A Little Something

It’s been a few weeks since my last post. When I entered this round, I’d hoped to get in one post a week. It just hasn’t worked out that way. I have to be okay with that especially considering that I was on the fence about participating at all. I knew my life was about to get very hectic for a while, but I chose to participate anyway. So, I can’t expect perfection. At least, I am still here.

I’m still getting some reading in. I recently finished Emma Holly’s book Fairyville. That is my second read from Ms. Holly’s arsenal and she has been an awesome discovery. I’m sure I’ll continue to read her work. I’ve also started checking out library e-books on my smartphone. Um…yeah….squeeeeeeee. Talk about like a kid with a new toy! I am currently reading like three books. Neil Gaiman’s American Gods. Faerie Tale by Raymond E. Feist. Out of Body by Stella Cameron. They’ll all be put on the back burner when I get the next installment of A Song of Ice and Fire. I’m expecting A Feast for Crows any day now.

As for my own writing, I’m still not doing much worth mentioning. I’m just letting it go for now. When things calm down a bit. It will be there. I will say that my new job introduces me to all kinds of possibilities for names. That’s a plus.

With our work schedule, we found it easier just to buy boxes. So, the packing has commenced. We also have our new apartment narrowed down and put on hold.  We are on our way to fill out the paperwork now. I hope that all is well with you guys. Until next time. :)

Slow Going

It’s been a little while since I’ve checked in. That’s due to a couple of reasons. One is that my mind is mostly focused on two things right now: working and moving. I’ve officially graduated from the training program on the new job. So, all that time spent doing book work and taking assessments is over. No more eight hour study days. However, that also means that I’ve entered the transition phase. Now, I have to apply what I’ve learned. That’s the new challenge. And being the recovering perfectionist that I am, I expect a lot out of myself. Despite my  amped up expectations, I’m doing pretty well. I have ninety days in transition. That’s enough time to get  a handle on things.

As for moving, it’s getting down to the wire. We’ve given official notice to our complex that we’re moving, but I haven’t started packing yet. The roomie and I have bought a few packing supplies, but that’s about it. We need boxes.We were supposed to get some free ones from the grocery store, but that hasn’t worked out so far. I get the feeling that we’re going to end up buying some.

As to Row goals, there’s not much to be said. That would be the other reason for not checking in. I’ve been a bit exhausted lately. While I see little spaces of time when I can get some writing in, my mind just hasn’t been in it. I’m starting to really miss my writing too. I’ve still been reading. I just finished a book today called Prince of Ice by Emma Holly. She’s an author that is new to me and I enjoyed her work.  Last week, I finished up that last George R. R. Martin book that I was reading. I’m glad that I’m at least getting read, but good books make me long to write them.

Hoping all is well with you guys! Happy Rowing!

Check in on the go

Quick post today. I am on my lunch break at the moment. My new schedule is taking some getting used to. I am working from noon to nine pm. Before this, it was eight to five. So now, my work day gets started at a time that used to mark
the halfway point. Even my meals are off schedule.

As for my ROW goals, that has been going a little slower. There hasn’t been as much writing as I would like. I did finish reading A Storm of Swords though. Reading just one of those huge epic fantasies is like
reading three average length novels. On to the next. Hope all is well with you guys. Until next time.

Rowing, Rowing, Rowing

I was gone all day on Sunday. Mother’s Day festivities had my complete attention. And so, I skipped Sunday’s check in. Tempted as I was, I just couldn’t let today pass without posting.  Things are going well. I’ve been getting good feedback on the job and I couldn’t be happier about it. My roommate and I have found a new apartment complex. We love the floor plans and the complex is much nicer than our current one. Moving there would be cheaper. It would put us closer to work. Best of all, there would be no highway time necessary. I soooo hate traffic. Packing has been added to my to-do list. As for ROW goals, I’ve been doing well there too.

Last week was actually pretty awesome. I had four strong writing days. The word counts weren’t extremely high, but that hasn’t been my focus for quite a while. It’s more about consistency for me. Next week, my schedule will change again. I’m hoping that this new regime will be more writer friendly. I finally had the bright idea to check for a WordPress app today and downloaded it. That should make posting easier. If it works out the way I’d like, then I’ll go to posting twice a week again.

I am still reading A Storm of Swords. I’d be done already if I still had time to sit and read for hours. That’s not the case. I get my reading in where I can. Luckily, reading is relaxing for me. So, it counts as stress management too. :) Well, that’s all for now. I hope things are rolling along for you guys too. Until Sunday.

Progress

Good news. I actually got some things done this week. I am so excited. This week has been much more progressive than the previous ones.  I got a workout in every day before work. I was able to meditate every day too. Those two accomplishments had me jazzed because they keep my stress levels down. It is easier for me to write when I’m clear-headed. I was able to hit my goal of two writing days during the work week. I think I have a story coming together.

I’m finally learning the ins and outs of my new phone. I am looking for apps that will allow me to write on my smartphone and easily sync up documents with my computer. Any apps that help with inspiration or productivity would be awesome too. I’ve been doing some research, but I’d like to get any opinions that you guys may have. I have an android phone by the way.

As for reading, I’ve started the third installment of George R. R. Martin‘s A Song of Ice and FireA Storm of Swords has gotten off to a brilliant start just as the others have. I am totally stoked and engrossed. It’s awesome watching the show and reading what happens next at the same time.

I feel like I’ve got my momentum back. My schedule will change again in the next two weeks, but I’m not worried. I starting to get the hang of managing it all. I hope that all is well with you guys. Please hit me up with any suggestions for apps. Best of  luck to you all.

Let’s try this again

Okay, so my plans went totally wayward.  In my first week back, I didn’t get anything done. I didn’t even check-in to admit to my inability to follow through with my goals at the time. Epic fail. Yes, I know. I guess some part of me wanted be ready to come back more than I actually was ready. I can see that now. When I get away from things for too long I lose momentum. I was afraid that my writing life would revert back to nothingness.

In the second week, I got some reading in. That’s a start. There has been no writing as of yet. I should probably think smaller in that area for now. It was suggested that I try five sentences a day. I like the sound of that. That’s something I could do on a break or the ride home without too much fuss. And perhaps that daily activity will give me the jump start that I need.

That’s all for now. Still trying to get the ball rolling again or rather the pen moving. Hoping for better progress this week. Catch ya next Sunday.

 

Ready to ROW Again

Hi all! How I’ve missed you so!

The last couple of weeks have been hectic as I adjusted to my new schedule. Things are going well at the job. Training is hardcore, like taking summer classes in college. It is fast paced and intense. Being the nerd that I am, I am really enjoying the learning process.

I committed myself to participating in this round. By the end of my first day at work, I was questioning that decision again only to arrive at the same conclusion. I need to be here. So, I gave myself the first two weeks of this round off just to work things out. I am learning the art of efficiency. And I’m ready to get back into ROW life. This is my day one of round two.

Goals…

Check-ins: I am only committing to Sundays for this round. I’m sure I’ll pop up on a few Wednesdays, but they have to be optional for now.

Reading: Things have really slowed down in this department. I can’t expect myself to read as much as I did before. So, I am aiming to read two craft books and all the fiction I can get my hands on.

Writing: This is tricky. My inclination is to go back to the every day goal. After having success with that last round. Anything less feels like a copout to me. When I’m honest with myself, I know that’s asking for too much right now. My days are filled with study. My mind needs downtime. With that said, I’ll commit to four days a week. That’ll give me the weekend and two and days during the work week.

Commenting: No specific goal here as far as numbers. I’m aim to make the rounds on both days. I’ve got a smart phone coming my way. I hope it will make that easier.

I hope all is well with you guys. I am so glad to be back. TTYL

Round One Wrap-up

Round one is officially ending today. It’s amazing how fast these rounds go by. It felt like we just got started, but we’re actually more than half way through the third month of the year. So, let’s get to the wrap-up.

Goal: To write every day.

Result: This went really well. After Kait Nolan’s post about choosing a test mile number, I found a groove. I can hit 250 words pretty easily. And so, I did write most days. I haven’t been this consistent with writing at any other time. I count this a success.

Goal: Make every check-in.

Result: Absolute compliance. I haven’t missed one check-in this round, even though there were certainly days that I wanted to do so.  The accountability that comes from always checking in keeps me grounded and on track. I know I’m carrying this goal over to next round.

Goal: Write a short story.

Result: Ehhh, not so much. I wrote a lot. I worked on two different story ideas. Neither resulted in a finished product. This round I learned that I don’t really have a problem writing often or hitting numbers. I need to do more planning so that I have actual projects to work on. Free writing is great, but it’s time to move on to specifics.

Goal: Analyze four novels. Later adapted to one.

Result: Epic fail. I didn’t complete any novel this round. I got through roughly half of one and a quarter of another. The only thing I’m sure about at this point is that I don’t have the will to finish the plot drill. Maybe at some point down the line, I’ll go back to it. I doubt it though. I find that I’m learning what I hoped to learn from the drill in other ways.

Goal: Read.

Result: There was no specific quota set for reading. I’ve done a lot of it though. So far this year, I’ve read fourteen books. In that lot is one nonfiction book, two books on craft, a collection of short stories, and ten novels. With all the changes happening in my life, this pace will likely slow down.

Overall, I’m really happy with what I’ve accomplished this round. I’d give myself a solid B+ for my efforts. I can see what my weaknesses are and I’m devising ways to strengthen them. My goals for next round will reflect that. For now, I’m going to enjoy the days off until round two starts. Until then. :)

Inspired

The last few days have been writing light and reading heavy. I’ve blown through the rest of The Hunger Games trilogy. I’ve been totally engrossed in a series before, but none that made me so emotional. I can’t recall ever crying over a book. Some movies, but never a book. And I’m not a cryer, but this series did it. The first book was just a good read. The second one, Catching Fire, left me a little melancholy. By the end of Mockingjay, I was a complete mess.

My first creative writing teacher used to always say,”Your writing should say something important about living and dying.” Suzanne Collins achieves that. I am used to reading with a certain level of detachment. It’s that part me that knows no matter what happens in a story, it’s fiction. It didn’t really happen, at least not that exact way. While I know that’s the case here as well, I was unable to maintain that distance from the story. I felt it all.

And so, I am totally inspired. Good writing always does that to me. It amps up my ambition making me want to do more than just write. I want to write something great which takes me right back to learning the craft.  I’ve been deep into John Truby‘s The Anatomy of Story. Of all the last minute things I wanted to accomplish by the end of round, finishing it is probably the only one that will get done by Thursday. I’m cool with that.

Hope all is well with you guys. We’re almost at the end. Until last check-in.

A Few Kind Words

In better spirits today. Gave myself a nice pedicure. That always cheers me up. Things have been moving along since Sunday. I’ve gotten my writing in every day. I have read another novel, The Hunger Games. My best friend is determined that I see the movie with her. So I figured it would be good to read the book before hand. I don’t know what I was expecting, but I was pleasantly surprised by how much I got into that story. I started book two last night, to the delight of many of my fangirl friends.

Monday I found out that my start date for my new job has been pushed back until April 2nd. That also just happens to be the day the next round of ROW 80 starts. I was considering skipping the round, but some wise words from Gene Lempp ( sponsor extraordinaire) have left me with a different perspective.

It would be so easy to just put certain things on the back burner for while, especially my writing. Ultimately though, that’s not what I want or need. I’m going to have to be able to juggle a number of things. The only way I’ll know for sure whether or not I can actually do it is to try.  It might not be pretty, but it doesn’t have to be. So, I’m moving ahead with the original plan to participate next round. I just have to set reasonable goals and adjust when necessary. Duh! Isn’t that the whole point of this challenge?

It’s good to be surrounded by smart, caring people. Thanks again Gene and ROW family.

Until Sunday.

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