Finished!

>> Tuesday, January 29, 2008

This is going to be a really short post, as I'm very tired and need some sleep. I finished my story today. Editing was touch and go, because I was trying to do other stuff around the house as well, so it took me pretty much all day to do. I basically edited sections of it on and off, until I finished at about 11:00pm. Then, I printed out a hard copy and double-checked my work. I caught one or two minor things that I wanted to change, such as a comma where I didn't need one. Other than that, the piece was definitely finished, and as polished as it was going to get.

I'm just very thankful to my friends and my husband, who proofread my story and offered their input. My poor husband read about five or six drafts, I think. He saw it go from very rough and messy to something much more coherent and polished. I don't think it would have turned out half as well as it did, though, if not for my friend, Maria. She suggested some structural changes that I wouldn't have thought of, and my story is much better for those changes.

Anyway, I turned the story in around 11:30pm or slightly later, and then I took the rest of the evening off to knit and watch TV with my husband. Tomorrow I will decide which writing projects to tackle next, besides my fairy tale re-telling. I can start scribbling out some rough drafts of the fairy tales and see which ones I think have the most potential, but I have some time before I need to make a final decision on that. In the meantime, I want to finish the book review and perhaps turn my attention toward my poetry. I have some ideas for new short stories that I've written down, but I'm not sure when I will begin those.

The important thing is, I met my deadline by the date that I wanted to--a day earlier, even. So I'm happy. And my future is filled with many other projects, stories, and poems to keep me busy and help me develop my writing career. It's a good start.

Edited to Add: I'm going to travel down to my hometown for my baby shower this weekend, but I'm leaving a little early to avoid bad weather, so it may be almost a week before I'm able to update this blog.

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A Change of Pace

>> Saturday, January 26, 2008

I'm not sure of my exact word count today. I kept track for about the first 140 words, and then I just never tallied them all up for the day. I began a new poem today, and that's where I wrote 140 words. It isn't finished yet, though. I'm hoping to write a few more stanzas to wrap up the action of the poem and finish. I just hope I can write a decent climax to it.

The other writing I did today was a book review. I haven't finished that, either. I only wrote about a page and a half (wide ruled paper...all I could find at the time). So either I came close to my word count or I actually made it. I'm not sure which, and I'm too tired to go back and count now.

Anyway, I started writing a summary of the book I chose to review, drawing from some notes that I took while reading it. I know of a publication that takes book review submissions from writers from time to time, and I figured I would give it a try. It's a non-paying publication, but the experience and everything would be good, if they like my review. We'll see how it goes.

Today was a nice break from editing. I think it was good for me. And it certainly gave my poor mind a little bit of rest (as bad as that sounds!). It was a decent writing day.

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To Write, or Not to Write? There is No Question!

>> Friday, January 25, 2008

I am really tired today. I don't know why. I got plenty of sleep. Maybe it's because I've been working so hard on my editing the last couple of days (no, I haven't deprived myself of sleep. That would just be stupid. I can't imagine trying to edit anything, much less well or even coherently, without plenty of sleep) and that's taken a toll on me. Or maybe it's just the pregnancy hormones doing a number on me today. Whatever it is, I feel mentally sluggish and physically exhausted. I just want to go back to sleep, and I know that would be very, very bad for me. Even if I told myself it would be a short nap, it wouldn't. I know myself, and it never is. I don't desire to waste a couple hours of my day that could be spent more profitably, so to speak.

So, here I am, blinking at my computer screen as if I've never seen it before in my life--even as I type this. I don't think I'm going to edit today. Not unless I wake up, anyway. But I think maybe I should take a break from it for a day, maybe two. I need to finish the story and turn it in on the 29th, however. I go out of town at the end of the month for my baby shower, and since the deadline is the 31st, I need to make sure my story is edited and polished and turned in before I leave town.

Maybe I'll try to write some poetry today. I'm not sure whether it will be any good or not, but then, I never am. At least I would be writing something and not feeling like I'm wasting the whole day away, writing-wise. The most productive I've been today is research. If you can call it that. I'm reading some articles on how to better promote yourself as a writer, and things of that nature. I'm learning some useful stuff.

Ever since I took some of the Writer's Digest Writing Workshops (www.writersonlineworkshops.com), I've been getting offers in the mail for subscriptions to writing magazines and publications--at a professional writer's discount. The only one I've signed up for is Writer's Digest, and that was early on when we weren't so short on money yet. However, I've recently received another offer that looks interesting. And while it's cheap, I'm not sure I can bring myself to do it right now. Maybe I'll treat myself to something like that after I get something published at a paying publication or in writing contest. Although, who knows when that will be. I'm hoping it's soon, but who knows. If there's anything a writer has to learn to deal with, it's waiting and rejections. And I've had experience doing both for some time now. It's nothing new.

Still, at least I feel like I'm moving forward a bit in my writing career. The writing goals help. It keeps me on track, and I feel like I'm accomplishing a lot more than I used to, in some ways. This blog also helps. Accountability to someone or some thing (both, if you can get it!) helps.

I'm off to write now. I feel a bit more alert after typing this.

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Feeling Like A Winner!

>> Wednesday, January 23, 2008

I. Kicked. Butt. Today. I did a ton of great work today in my editing, I think! After struggling most of the day with the rough draft, trying to add more description to various parts of the story, my creativity finally kicked in this evening as my perseverance paid off! I'll have to type up the changes tomorrow, but I'm really pleased with my work. I think it has promise as it is, and once I polish it, I think it could definitely win the contest. I don't know if it will, of course, but I'm hoping it will!

Yesterday was some of the same. I spent it editing. Mostly, I fixed grammatical mistakes or misspellings. I even went through and changed some words that I had been overusing. I added a little bit of new writing to it, but not a whole lot. In addition to the editing on the story, I began two new poems. One of them...I really don't know exactly where it was going. It sort of turned into a ranty piece about how I feel, being stuck at home without a job. But aside from one or two salvageable lines, it really sucks so far. I can't seem to capture the things I want to say with just the right words. I have a feeling it'll go through a major rewrite. The other poem I started is about writing. It kind of rambled along until it developed the theme of writers block and trying to meet deadlines. I dunno that it's all that great, but it sure pleased me a heck of a lot more than the other poem.

In the meantime, I'm enjoying my new book when I get a chance. I've been pretty good about not letting it interfere with or distract me from my writing so far. It's kind of like when I was in college, or grad. school: I sneak a little of my pleasure reading in during lunch time, or right before bed, to help myself relax. That way, I can read something that I really want to, but not at the expense of my work.

Now if only the book weren't so hard to put down at the end of lunch, or my bedtime...

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Progress, Progress...

>> Monday, January 21, 2008

Well, this evening I gave my rough draft for the story I'm working on its first edit. Had I used a red pen, it would look much like it had been dipped in blood. As it was, I used a pink pen since it was closest to hand, and as a result the rough draft looks like someone's bubble gum popped all over the pages. I found a lot of things I want to add, change, or expand upon, in addition to fixing the minor errors such as misspellings or repetitious use of certain words.

I know it sounds weird, and I don't know if it's just me, or if writers tend to be like this in general, but I'm quite pleased by how messy the draft looks right now. The messier a draft starts out in its initial editings, the better the finished result usually is, I've noticed. But perhaps that's just me. I don't know. I take editing pretty seriously. Editing is something I have mixed feelings about. While part of me enjoys editing, another part of me loathes the whole process, since it gives me a headache.

And I mean that quite literally. Sometimes editing actually gives me a splitting headache. But that usually happens when I pull out the BIG editing guns, so to speak. I have, somehow, developed a technique of editing that I can do in "desperate" circumstances, such as when I'm waaaaay over my word limit on a paper or something, and I really have to trim it down to size (it's always been my theory that it's better to have too much to say than too little!). It's very slow-paced, time-consuming, and ultra-anal. But it works, and it gets the job done.

I doubt I'll have to use that particular technique with this story, though, since I've still got some room for leeway, in terms of word count. But, we'll see. I'll reserve the final verdict for whenever I get some of the new description added and stuff.

I have some other editing techniques, one of which is very unusual, but it's the perfect thing for trying to see how the different pieces of your story fit together and whether you've left out important plot details, or whether certain things should go in a different order. In other words, it's a great technique for checking the structure of your story, or for correcting any structure problems you might have. Plus, it helps you to catch a lot of details and little mistakes that you might miss otherwise. I'd describe it here, but this entry is getting long already. Perhaps I'll devote another post to editing some time, and I'll go over the various techniques I use then. I'd be interested to know the different techniques other writers use to edit, and why. To me, different types of editing are necessary for different situations. You use the appropriate tool for the situation, much like a writer often agonizes over just the right word to convey a very specific meaning. After all, despite what my husband thinks, all words are not equivalent in meaning. There are subtle shades of meaning, nuances that can tip the balance and cast a whole different meaning on something, when used in combination with certain other words. My husband just doesn't get that. I suppose a lot of people wouldn't. It drives me up the wall. I could write a whole post just on this subject alone. But I digress, as I usually do...

Anyway, I accomplished a decent amount of work tonight, and I'm fairly happy. I celebrated with a carmel ice cream sundae with everything on it (mmm!) that my husband bought me, and a new book that I've really been wanting to read--which my husband also bought me. I used them as bribes to get myself to buckle down and work tonight, so I was really (over)excited to reward myself with them afterwards.

Now if I can just tear myself away from my new book and go to bed so that I'm not too tired to write or take care of some other things I want to accomplish tomorrow...

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Drafts, Editing, and Weaknesses--Oh My!

>> Sunday, January 20, 2008

Well, today I typed up my rough draft of that short story. I'll begin editing it tomorrow, but I can see already that I need to add some more description here and there. The middle is kind of narrative-heavy in some ways, although with what little dialogue and action takes place between the characters, I think I captured the emotion pretty well during the middle of the piece. I just need to work on my description and expand upon things a bit. Description has always been a weak area of my writing.

It's not that I can't do it, mind you. It's that it takes work, for me. See, my problem with description is that I get so caught up in the plot, dialogue, and action, that I tend to forget to describe the setting or much of what's going on around my characters. I'm better about this flaw than I used to be, but it's still a weakness I have to watch for and catch--usually during the editing phase.

I'll turn a keen eye on the piece tomorrow, though, and mark it up properly, nasty comments and rare compliments to myself and all. I'm too tired to start right now, though. I'm sure I wouldn't catch half of what I needed to, even if it is only a first editing.

Didn't write any fresh material today. I'm concentrating on this story, since the deadline looms near at the end of the month. So, I'll probably be working almost exclusively on this piece for a while, with only a few scrawls toward other projects in the meantime. I may try to continue my research on the fairy tales, though. I have my list narrowed down a lot more, but I'm still unsure as to which one I should re-tell. I may just have to play with some of them after I finish my current piece and turn it in.

Well, I'm off to get some sleep, no matter how interrupted it may be by the cat, who wants to cuddle every few hours, and several nightly bathroom trips--which are frequent enough, being pregnant, but are now guaranteed to be even more so, since I was stupid enough to drink an entire pot of decaf tea by myself today while working on the short story. *sigh* But tea helps me to write when I'm having trouble getting started, or when I'm stuck. And it's just plain comforting.

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A Feeling of Accomplishment

>> Saturday, January 19, 2008

Aaaah, I'm done! I started a rough draft rewrite of that autobiographical piece that I wanted to fictionalize and turn into a short story today, and I actually finished it today. Of course, I have a lot of editing and rewrites to do, but the point is, I managed to get the whole rough draft done in one day. This makes me very happy. I feel like I accomplished something big today, even if some of the material was only somewhat rewritten and inserted alongside the totally new material I wrote for it.

Better still, I think I managed to capture the essence of the autobiographical piece without losing any of its power in the fictionalized setting and story. I was afraid the ending and emotions wouldn't be as powerful, but as I wrote the ending to the story just a few moments ago, I found myself smiling. Actually smiling. I'm pleased with it in terms of its conclusion, I think. And when I go back to edit and tweak, I think this could really turn out to be an excellent piece. I just hope it wins the contest. Besides kind of wanting the money I'd get for winning (it wouldn't be much), I just want to start getting somewhere with my writing.

And perhaps it's the adrenaline rush from producing something with a lot of great potential, but I feel excited about my writing for the first time in a long time. Don't get me wrong, I love writing. I always have. But for a long time now, even back before NaNoWriMo, I've been in a writing rut. Besides having trouble writing at all, or totally not liking anything that I did write, I just felt very blah, uncreative, and unenthusiastic. I'm not sure what it was, but it seems like (I hope!) I'm getting a reprieve from it now, at least for a little while.

I think I'm going to go write some poetry now. I've been producing more of that lately, although slowly, in bits and pieces. But the only way to improve any kind of writing is to write.

Today was a good day. Produced a lot. Way more than 500 words. I'm tired, excited, and happy. It gives me hope for the future, and that's something I need very much right now.

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Does It Ever Stop?

>> Friday, January 18, 2008

To answer the question in the title...No, I don't think that it ever does.

I only managed a little bit of writing today. Started a new poem, which petered out when I couldn't find a rhyme for a word I really want to use because the imagery is very pretty. Typed up an old piece of my writing so I have a copy I can change and edit, instead of marking up the only hardcopy original that I seem to have. That's about it. Didn't get anything else done. Wasted day, in a lot of ways. I tried to do some writing, and I was well on the way, but basically I got some bad news when my husband came home from work, and I can't get past it enough right now to write. I'm too worried and depressed.

Basically, despite the fact that the company said they were going to hire him on permanently this week, they called him into their office today and told him that his handle time needs to go down, and they're giving him a probationary period to work on this and fix it.

I'm worried he's going to lose his job, the only source of income we have. And there's little enough of that as it is. And it's not like I'm going to get a job, being pregnant and about to have a baby. If he loses this job and we're out of income again, I don't know what we'll do. We're struggling to pay bills as it is.

Why can't anything ever go right for us?

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Writing, Interrupted.

>> Thursday, January 17, 2008

Well, I didn't get any writing done today, but it was for a very good reason. I went in for my Gestational Diabetes test, and while I was doing that, I had to go to the bathroom. When I got in there, I discovered I was bleeding, so I called my doctor. The nurse told me to go down to Labor and Delivery because they wanted to make sure it wasn't preterm labor or something like that.

So, I had to leave in the middle of my Gestational Diabetes test (which means I will have to reschedule and go do it all over again, next week). Luckily, the center where I was having the Gestational Diabetes test was just down the street from the hospital that I'm going to while I'm pregnant. So, I drove myself down and went up to Labor and Delivery. They had me give a urine sample because they wanted to see if it was a urine infection, and then they took some information, my vitals, and hooked me up to the monitors so they could monitor the baby. I was there for hours.

Long story short, they ruled out several things and they think they know what caused the bleeding. I'm on rest for a week (I can get up and move around, but I'm supposed to take it very easy and not do any bending, etc.) and I have to do some other things, but the baby and I are fine. I feel bad for my husband, 'cause he called me from work just as I was going to Labor and Delivery, and when he found out where they sent me, it gave him a scare. But, I told him to stay put until we figured out what was going on, exactly (which, of course took several hours). So, I got periodic phone calls from him throughout the day, as he got breaks at work, to find out what was going on.

Finally, around four thirty or so they released me. I got home around 5pm, and I warmed up some food to eat dinner because I was very hungry by then. I was really tired at that point, so after finally talking to my husband when he called me again, I went to lie down for a while and took a nap. I wasn't even going to try to do any writing after everything that went on today. And, so, that's why I haven't reached my daily word count or anything else. Maybe tomorrow I can get some stuff written, since I'm supposed to be resting anyway. I'm just glad the baby's okay. That's all I care about.

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Busy, Busy Day

>> Wednesday, January 16, 2008

In stark contrast to yesterday, I accomplished a lot today. True, I spent most of the day cleaning, but I did manage to do some writing and writing related stuff today. First, I researched some writing markets and publications a bit and found a contest with a theme called "Goodbye to All That," which I think I'm going to enter. The deadline in January 31st, however, so I need to get to work on it soon. I think I can do it, though. I'm going to rewrite an old piece of mine for the contest, and I already started some notes on the different changes, deletions, and edits I'm going to do to it. Plus, I'm going to completely change the scenery, and change the ending a bit, plus add a whole new beginning. Sounds like a lot of work, and it is, but I'm going to keep the essence of the original piece while making the necessary changes to the piece to make it a short story and fit the guidelines of the theme for the contest.

I'm hoping to begin work on it tomorrow.

While I was going through my writing files looking for the aforementioned piece, I came across one of my old sheafs of poetry. Long story short, I found a few good or relatively decent poems among them that I might try to submit for publication. And since looking at the poetry put me in the right frame of mind, I finished up a poem tonight that I had started a week or so ago.

I also did some reading today on those fairy tales, and I'm starting to narrow the list down a bit. Some of them simply aren't suitable for a humorous re-telling (or at least I can't think of any way to make them so, given the subject matter inherent to the stories. I mean, how do you make something like the story of the Ugly Duckling funny? Not in any good way that I can think of). So, I'm crossing some off of the list here and there. Besides the Ugly Duckling, I'll probably eliminate Little Red Cap, simply because the story of Little Red Riding Hood might be a popular one to submit. But, I'll reread it when I get to that place on my list, and give it a thorough consideration anyway. Rumplestiltskin, which I thought might be a good candidate for a humorous retelling, was crossed off my list today. I'd forgotten how creepy the end of that story was, somehow. But I do recall vague memories of that ending as a child, so they must have read the original version to me from that old book of fairy tales we had when I was a kid. But, I digress.

The story of the Frog King, or Iron Heinrich, has possibilities. I don't have any specific ideas in mind on how to implement the humor, but I think, given the structure, and stuff, it COULD be done. I might have to just mess with it and see. I have a feeling that when I get my list narrowed down to the last candidates, I'll just have to try writing them to see what happens and if they work out or not. Good thing I have until the end of March for this deadline. I'm going to need all that time!

Finally, I wrote a bit more on my NaNoWriMo novel (yes, it's not November, and all of that is over by now, but since the story still lacks a title, that's how I'm going to refer to it until then). I've been doing most of my writing to meet my daily word count on this novel. Tonight, I only wrote a little bit on the novel, but I did meet my word count, because my word count was split today between the preparatory notes for the short story I'm going to rework/write, the poem I finished, and the NaNoWriMo novel.

All totaled, I reached 551 words today.

And now, I'm going to sleep because I'm tired and I have an appointment tomorrow.

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Unproductive Day

>> Tuesday, January 15, 2008

I'm in a very bad mood today. And by bad mood, I mean everybody duck for cover, it's going to be worse than World War III.

Why am I in such a bad mood? Well, the short of it is that I didn't get any writing done today, and that really, really irritated me. Now, why didn't I get any writing done today? Because I decided to finally start undecorating our Christmas tree and taking down Christmas decorations because it's been put off all too long, despite assurances otherwise that we would get around to it soon. So, annoyed, I hauled the boxes up from storage myself, undecorated the tree (which was an irritating experience in itself considering our tree is beyond dying by now, and kept shedding millions of pine needles as I took the ornaments and then the lights off of it), and took down some of the other decorations.

But even all of that wasn't as bad as trying to put the stupid Christmas lights back in their packages. It's much easier to get them OUT of the box than back IN to the box, I've discovered. So, I spent hours wrestling three separate strings of lights back into their boxes, and got no writing done whatsoever. Thank goodness we had a smallish tree and I didn't have even more lights sets to put away!!!

Anyway, I failed to reach my 500 words for the day, and I didn't get a chance to read fairy tales to retell for that contest, either. The most I managed to accomplish today in terms of any of my goals was to apply to a job position that I've been considering for a while now. Today was the deadline for application, so I finished getting all of my materials prepared and gathered and faxed it all over to my potential employer's office. Now let's just pray that by some miracle I get the job...

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Perseverance Pays Off

>> Monday, January 14, 2008

Ugh. This post is going to be short because I'm really tired. After watching the third Terminator movie with my husband this afternoon and doing a couple loads of laundry, I spent a few hours making homemade pizza. Considering we have little to no counter space in the apartment, it was both frustrating and interesting trying to knead and roll the dough out to the appropriate size not once, but twice. Yep. I made two pizzas, as my husband and I don't see precisely eye to eye on toppings. But I digress.

By the time the pizza finished baking and we ate, it was already getting kind of later in the evening, and then I still had to do the dishes. After all of that, I finally got to sit down and write. But boy, was I tired. And, being pregnant, my back ached like crazy. But, I did manage to get about three hundred and some words by time my husband went to bed. I felt almost like going to bed then myself, but I forced myself to continue on sheer determination. After all, I was almost there!

So, I forced myself to keep going, and lo and behold--I reached 657 words for my daily total. I think I've more than earned my rest, considering the long day I've had and the work I accomplished. Tomorrow I plan to leaf through my fairy tale collections and reread some of the tales from the list of potential candidates for re-telling that I drew up. I just hope I can retell it well enough for it to be published. There are some strict guidelines and stipulations regarding it, and I'm a bit nervous about it.

Well, that's tomorrow's worry. Time for bed.

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The Beginnings of Progress

>> Sunday, January 13, 2008

Well, I'm very tired but happy. Today I managed to reach my daily goal of 500 words. In fact, I went slightly over it, and managed 560 words. I probably could have even managed more since writing was coming somewhat easily tonight, but my husband wanted me to watch all of the Terminator movies with him (we managed to get through the first two, and we plan to watch the third tomorrow, before the premiere of the TV series), so I was pretty distracted for the majority of the evening. Still, I at least managed my daily word count.

In other writing news, that website, http://www.duotrope.com/, that my friend left in a comment to my previous entry is both quite interesting and helpful. I recommend it highly to writers. It makes finding markets for various types of writing a lot easier. Through my own efforts at detective work, I had managed to hunt up some publications for fantasy, but my discoveries were only a handful compared to the treasure trove that this site pulled up for me. To that end, I began poking around some of the websites of these publications and I found a call for submissions that interested me. It's for short stories, but since I'm hoping to improve mine anyway, I figure why not give it a shot? And since they want fairy tale re-tellings, I figure that it's a good place to start, since I will have a loose framework for my short story to build upon. I'm hoping that something like this will help me ease into writing short stories, and that I will soon feel more comfortable writing my own completely original material (I have already begun a list of ideas, which I hope to further develop in the future, after I finish this project).

So, I'm starting to chug (or is it slug? *wink*) along, writing wise. The momentum is slow, and I don't expect it will speed up noticeably any time soon, but maybe one day later this year, I'll be able to look back and say to myself, "Wow, I've really come a long way and accomplished a lot."

Now why is it I'm having flashbacks to that story my mother read me, The Little Engine that Could? Oh, yeah...that's right. I'm the little engine.

Who says books never teach you anything, eh? That's at least one lesson from a book that I guess I picked up well enough.

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2008: The Year I Will Be Published, Or At Least Accomplish Something Worthwhile!

>> Friday, January 11, 2008

2007 was a hard year for me in many ways, so I wasn't altogether sad to see the back of it. Of course, the new year has thus far been off to a less than steller start for me, so I'm desperately hoping and trying to hold it together and try for a better year. To this end, I have made some resolutions, or goals. I will begin my blog by posting these goals in hopes that they will serve as not only a reminder to myself of what I want to accomplish for the year, but also give myself something to look forward to in my current dreary life and motivate me to keep trudging toward a better future.

I have further subdivided my goals for the year into two groups: small goals and large goals. My reason for doing this is because it's easy to get discouraged when you don't seem to be reaching those highly coveted big goals and you often begin to wonder if you're getting anywhere at all. That's where my small goals come in handy. They are designed to instill confidence in me and give me a sense of accomplishment. The small goals are something I can point to and be proud of, saying to myself, "There! See, I am getting somewhere, and I am accomplishing something, even if things aren't moving as fast as I want them to!" The small goals keep me sane, and they help stiffen my resolve that I will reach my large goals eventually, even if it isn't this year. The small goals help me to know that I can do it; they keep me chugging along, putting my nose to the grindstone.

So, my small goals include:
-Writing at least 500 words a day, whether it be on just one writing project or spread out amongst several. The point is, I should be able to easily reach 500 words a day, considering I pushed myself to do much more every day during NaNoWriMo this past November.
-Learn how to write decent short stories, as I've never been good at them, since my ideas always seem to work better as novels.
-Explore some new genres or areas of writing that I've never tried before, like Horror or Mystery, or something else that catches my fancy. Perhaps it will shake my creativity into gear, if nothing else!
-Write more poetry. Although I consider myself a novel writer, since I tell stories much better than anything else, I dabble in poetry, and I'm hoping to improve what is, admittedly, a weak area of my own writing.
-Submit said short stories and poems and other items of writing for publication as I improve my abilities.

Large goals:
-To finish the book I began for NaNoWriMo. I reached 50,000 words during this first year that I chose to enter the November writing marathon, and after a decent break from it, I'm ready to work toward completion of the novel, though I know from my outline and the current state of my story that I have a long way to go. This is shaping up to be a long book.
-To get a book published.
-Keep up with this blog! Part of the reason I'm starting this blog in the first place is to help keep myself accountable. Yet, it's very easy for me to forget to post and not keep up with it, so, I'm hoping that over time it will become habit as much as some of my writing goals for the year. If not, perhaps at least some of my readers will poke me every now and then to remind me that this blog does indeed still exist and needs to be updated as soon as possible.
-To get a regular job again! Though it does not pertain directly to my writing, I do need to pay bills, and money is tight with only one income. Worrying about money, I've noticed, often distracts me from my writing and hinders my creative process somewhat. So, the sooner I'm employed again, the better. Though I doubt it will be before the baby comes, in April. *sigh* Still, here's to hoping and working toward that goal in the meantime, just the same!

There! That wasn't nearly so awkward as the usual introductory post of "Hi, my name is ____," and "I like ____," etc. This was a lot easier for me to type up. There is much to be said for just diving in to something, sometimes. After all, it's a question of beginning at all, no matter how tough or awkward it might be, versus never beginning and thus never getting anywhere you want to.

I need to make that my writing mantra. Only more wise-sounding, I think.

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