Until I looked here today, I hadn’t realized that I’d not updated on my writing for some time – more than a month!
I’ve been busy:
- No flu, but nasty respiratory infections – both myself, and my husband. We’re better now, but still not up to full recovery.
- House! I’ve been working on organization, clearing out old paperwork, and preparing for taxes. I’m really looking forward to next year – we may even try the short form.
- Writing. I’m still not finished with the edits – I’ve frankly neglected them for many weeks. However, I did start a short story (never wrote one before), and I’m about 2/3 finished. When I’m done, I’ll put it up as a freebie on Amazon, and set the download link here.
That’s really it. No major catastrophes, no really GOOD excuse for not being busier. Just home stuff and laziness.
It’s been interesting. Lots of little accomplishments (my house has reached a level of clean/organized that it hasn’t been in ages), interesting experiences – the Eclipse (it was amazing!!!!!), getting to know my grandson, learning to handle unstructured time, and slogging away on the first book.
That last has been the most challenging. Not the writing – that’s relatively easy.
No, the problem is that I have discovered that I contain massive amounts of insecurities. I doubt that I can write anything worth reading, I worry that I will be a failure at something I deeply and earnestly want to do, and that I will not be able to find an audience that wants to read what I write.
In short, the possibility of being judged, and found wanting, is paralyzing my progress.
I’ve been curiously unable to get down to the revisions (fear? doubt? laziness?), so I’ve been catching up on other things – home organization, fitness, cooking, reading.
That last thing, reading, has led me to some interesting authors, including:
- Kat Howard – here is a link to some of her short stories – quite engrossing.
- Kristine Kathryn Rausch – she blogs at Kriswrites, and has put together a Holiday-Themed Bundle (bundles are an opportunity to get LOTS of reading for a small price – a very good deal). BTW, don’t stop with her fiction (good as it is). She also writes with a cold and clear eye about the business of writing.
- Michael Connelly – on both audio and book (Kindle) format – I’ve been catching up with some of the backlist, and it’s been great!
I got right to work today on my writing. When I had finished my day’s quota (self-imposed), I was delighted to see that I had reached a percent completed of 21% for Alien8, and 10% for Retiring Without Falling Apart.
I’ve set up a Google Sheet to track my work. It’s simple, just 4 columns:
Date Words that Day Total Percent Complete
I’m big on tracking progress. I think it’s hard to keep focused on big projects (which a book is, generally), unless you can see how your efforts are paying off. It’s the same with weight loss – those who don’t keep track get discouraged. So, along with the numbers being updated, I also added a pie chart, which is a nice visual image of where I am in the process.
So, I have good reasons to be proud of myself. In addition, I got up early and:
- Made my bed
- Got dressed – NOT in sloppy clothes
- Ate nutritiously
- Paid some bills
- Organized paperwork
I’m feeling just GREAT!
Well, we’ll be dining on leftover turkey tonight. We didn’t take any cranberry sauce or stuffing, so – I’ll be making the stovetop versions of both this afternoon.
I got very little done over the holidays. I was visiting my daughter in Chicago, then on to Cleveland, then, a long drive home to SC. It makes me tired just thinking of it.
My eldest child was in a community theatre production of Godspell – the video is here – she’s the petite one in pink.
It was great to be in my own bed this weekend. Not to mention that my eye problem completely cleared up. (Due to cats and dogs in Chicago and Cleveland, I was stuffy and with red, itchy eyes. It made reading and writing just about impossible).
Picture is from the Asthma & Allergy Foundation of America.
A few breeds have the reputation of being non-allergic, but – after last week’s experience, I’m not hopeful.
I’m working on clearing out the clutter, unpacking, and getting the house in order today. I’m going to get to the gym this afternoon, followed by intense cooking, and a relaxing evening.
Writing will NOT be on the schedule today. I’m hoping to get back into my regular routine by Tuesday or Wednesday, at the latest.
How was your holiday?
Man, has this been an exciting month!
I visited Cleveland, to babysit my newest grandson. What a treat! He’s 19 months, fully mobile, and loaded with energy. I took to napping every day, and still he wore me out.
I headed back home just a few days after National Novel Writing Month started, and had very little time to write on the road, so – I’ve had to spend most of the last week catching up. I’m just a few thousand words down today, and have plenty of time to work, so I’m feeling confident that I’ll be on track to finish on time by early next week.
The novel is going well. I’m having no trouble writing or plotting, just some serious lack of time. When I decided to retire, I thought I’d have more time to write.
Nope. Turns out that retirement gets a lot of tasks dumped on your shoulders. It also means that, with spending more time in the house, you get sucked into organizing and cleaning. Well, the house really did need it, but it cuts into my writing.
Less that a week to go till the start of NaNoWriMo2017. I’m spending about half my writing time getting the first fourth of the book planned out. I may have to do the rest next week.
I want to have the broad outlines of the new book in place, so I can know the ending point I want to aim for. Yes, I am basically a Planner – at least, I prefer to know the general direction of large projects, and draw up benchmarks for my work, so I can finish at the time and place I want to be.
Here is the working cover for the new book – I’m thinking about using my initials – LS – and turning that into a name for my sci-fi books. Not to hide as a man, but to differentiate between my mystery/suspense books and the sci-fi ones. If I end up writing in another genre, I may do the same for it.
I’m planning on using this site as a general Author website. That means:
- Talking about my WIP – Work in Progress – I will occasionally post short excerpts from my novels or nonfiction books.
- Using it to promote my new books – if I don’t tell everyone, how will they know I’m done and the book is out of the gate (to use a horseracing analogy)?
- Posting about Things I’ve Learned About Writing, starting with this, that was accepted by the Writing Cooperative on Medium.
- Links to other sites that I’ve found helpful – writing, publishing, managing a business (which is what writers do).
Look for updates at least once a week, on Thursday morning.