Monday, August 27, 2012

Get Organized. Keep a log book.

For a while now I've seen this Composition book lying around, one my daugther had when she was in college, you know, the kind of book with the black or blue cover and the pages have double-spaced lines. You buy them at office supply stores. (Hey, this would even work with your computer notebook or Scrivener, I think.) I've always wanted to put the Composition book to some use, but could never decide on what to use it for.

Then it came to me. When I was in the navy, we kept log books on the bridge. Everything that happens on the brige gets written down. No relying on someone's fuzzy memory about what happened three months ago, or three years ago. Just go to the log.

Now why wouldn't this work for a writer. Keep a log as you work. An idea comes up for the story you're working on, write in the log. You've finished for the day, write down in the log where you stopped, and what you need to do next. You realize you need to make a change to an earlier chapter, write it in the log.

Faithfully keep a log book and you should never forget anything. No sticky notes to lose (just don't lose your log book).

Here's the first entry in my new log:

What do you think? Are you already doing something like this? Do you think it's a good idea, if you don't already have some such method?

Tuesday, August 21, 2012

Life is always full of changes

I retired two years ago, but I've struggled to get any writing done, because I've been caring for my grandchildren. I love my grandchildren dearly, but it was frustrating not being able to get much work done, very frustrating. I always knew that they would eventually be in school, and I would have more time to write, but that wasn't enough to make me happy. Afterall, I'm getting older each year. Who knows how much time I have left? I certainly don't.

All of that has changed now. My daughter and her family moved to Georgia. And my grandson Kathan started preschool yesterday. I was so out of my element yesterday, I almost didn't know what to do. I had trouble letting go of the stress I've been under for the past two years. Believe me, if you don't know it, raising todlers is stressful, especially when you're in your early sixties. I rarely sat down for more than one or two minutes at a time without having to jump up and do something for one or all of them. My days of caring for them started early and ended late. I've listened to and watched more Sesame Street, Dorothy The Dinosaur, The Wiggles, Caillou, etc., etc., than I ever want to see again.

I was worried about Kathan going to school. I was afraid especially that he would cry when I left him, and his going to school would be stressful for me too and I'd feel guilty about it. No way. Not only did he not cry when I dropped him off at the school, he was happy and joined in with the other kids in their activities without even a look back. Last night, when I put him to bed, he said he wanted to go to school again. This morning, as I was unbuckling him from his carseat at school, he said, "Thank you for bringing me to school, grand pe." It almost brings tears to my eyes as I write this.

I'm still having trouble dealing with the freedom. I mean, I can really do things without trying to get them done in a hurry, without little kids hanging on me, without worrying that I've only got an hour to work, so I must get something done. I mean, this is unreal. I worked two solid hours on my writing yesterday, and I've worked for an hour or more this morning. It's just incredible. And I still have several hours ahead of me to do what I want. I mean, I feel like I'm free. And freedom feels good.

Monday, August 13, 2012

Writing versus Blogging

Lately, I've been writing more and blogging less. I still keep up with the blogs I follow and try to comment when I have something to say. But, honestly, I'm much happier getting some consistent writing done and blogging less. Hopefully, I'll have something new to post before long. I don't want to lose touch with other bloggers.

Saturday, August 4, 2012

Guest post on Strands of Pattern

Today I'm doing a guest post on Jeff Hargett's strands of pattern. Jeff has proven to be one of the sincerest and brightest bloggers I've come across lately. I had the pleasure of beta reading part of one of his novels, and I can say he writes at a high level of professionalism. I'm thankful for the opportunity he's given me to do a guest post. The post is titled "The Power of the Positive Reception of Critism". Hope you have a chance to visit Jeff's blog and become a follower of his if you aren't already. Have a great day today.