Category Archives: personal life

Interlude: Alaska

Spent a week in the northernmost state, and BOY was it amazing. Expect more on that later, since school starts tomorrow. (!!!) But I definitely had a lot of Thoughts and gathered a lot of Creative Energy (and explored lots of great settings for a series of murder mysteries, I think, not that I have time for that). I’m not a master photographer by any stretch of the imagination, but even a sucker like me with a busted-up phone can take a breathtaking pic in such a gorgeous setting.

You Again

I’ve been in one of those emotional fugue states where very little gets done that isn’t absolutely necessary – so I’ve definitely blown it re: this year’s resolution to blog weekly. Hmm. Perhaps, since it’s the solstice, I’ll have a mid-year reboot?

Or perhaps not.

I’ve been re-reading old favorite books, playing with a toddler, and watching my husband play the video game I got him for Valentine’s Day, so for once I’ve been busy with good things… but very busy, nonetheless.

I’ve also been doing some research for my WIPs and absolutely ignoring the fact that I should be prepping for the fall (I’m teaching English 10, which I haven’t taught in 10 years, so… basically a new class). It’s been great!

I keep telling myself that fallow periods are important for creativity, but it’s still a bummer. At least I’ve got a writing group to yell at me (in a good-natured way) when I fail to produce. Outside accountability is very important to me!

there’s that whooshing sound again

 Soooo yeah. That resolution of mine to blog more? Well…

Oh, and those ten pages I was supposed to turn in to my writing group… last Tuesday?

Hmm. And when is enrollment for grad classes for this semester? Oh. Really? Three months ago, you say…?

Yeah. I’ve been falling behind.

But I’m enjoying the ride and I haven’t fallen TOO far to catch up (I hope?) so here we go again!

Some things I’ve been putting off lately:  Continue reading there’s that whooshing sound again

The Magicians

I just started watching Season 1 of The Magicians (SyFy) on Netflix last week and have been steadily bingeing through all of it with C. Tragically, tonight he has choir and all we have left is the finale and Season 2 premiers TOMORROW and it looks like SyFy lets you watch things online live and that might (MIGHT) be enough to get me to forgive them for spelling their name that way (SyFy? Seriously?).

As we went through the episodes–“This is like if someone was writing Harry Potter fanfic and kept going further and further off course… in the best possible way,” I said, early on–I started Tweeting about it, made some friends via hashtags… I might or might not have followed most of the cast on Twitter. Um… uhoh. Am I joining a fandom??

I’ve been thinking about adding TV recaps to my blogging fodder. I think maybe #TheMagicians might be the show I choose.

Unless I just spend the next few weeks entering their writing contest (i.e. FANFICTION!). 1500 words by Feb. 8th…

Piece of cake. I’ve got plenty of time and tons of ideas.

…right?

Writing Dates

thanks, memegenerator.com!One of the things I constantly struggle with is finding time for writing. I work full time, have a toddler, and occasionally pretend to have a social life, family life, or marriage. When the heck am I going to fit in writing?

I jot stuff down from time to time, of course, but usually my best ideas come when–I’m way too busy to do anything about them.

And I’m not at a point where I can turn it on like a faucet and just squeeze in half an hour of writing every day. (Someday, maybe?)

So one thing that I’ve been trying to make time for is writing dates: times when I set aside time with some accountability partners to Get Shit Done.

Sometimes this is more effective–when I’m primed for it–and sometimes less (like tonight, when I’m tired after a three-day weekend where I was solo parenting while C worked). It can be really hard to hit that sweet spot. I think making it more regular might help, though, so my writing buddies and I have agreed on two more dinner-and-writing dates in the next three weeks–meaning that, hopefully, I’ll have 10 more pages to turn in to my writing group by our next meeting! Right?

 

….right????

 

D:

Late for Saturday, or early for Tuesday…?

Sometimes it’s so hard to tell.

The beginning of a new semester is always tricky, but especially when you’re sick (still? again? who even knows at this point).

I have a new bunch of students in Creative Writing this semester, and it’s about half the size of last semester’s class–and 80% male. This is the first time I’ve had enough kids sign up to teach it twice in a year, but with the smaller group I suspect it’s going to be a very different experience. Last semester had a lot of humor and several big personalities, and this semester seems like mostly silent students.

But our first unit is Creative Nonfiction, so I’m looking forward to having them write and design their own Six-Word Memoirs.

I just killed like an hour looking for the one I designed on Canva, but have now given up on that. My six-word memoir: “Learned more from teaching than school.”

What’s yours?

 

New Year, New Me? (Nah)

archer-wiki_characters_archer-vice_skinny-pam_01Well, after my flurry of November activity/NaNoWriMo, I sure did taper off on blogging, didn’t I?

And since today’s New Year’s Day, it’s a perfect time to resolve to blog more in 2017!

Among other resolutions, of course. But don’t worry, no “new me” stuff — as Pam says, I really like me. Continue reading New Year, New Me? (Nah)

Retreat to Move Forward

jackdonaghySo, tonight instead of writing words, I cut about 600 from the draft of the first chapter of the co-written Romantic Suspense WIP. (I need a better name for that. TCWRSWIP? Hmm, not much better, actually… And my writing partner and I definitely agree that I’m not allowed to come up with titles for anything else. Maybe I’ll see if she’s got any ideas.)

Anyway! I sort of can’t believe how much I’ve learned in the two-year fallow period I spent in between bursts of work on TCWRSWIP (for lack of a better title). I’ve been reading a lot about story structure, scene structure, beats, etc. at Jenny Crusie’s side project blog, and that has helped a lot; and, of course, the first version of this scene was sort of a trial balloon that Chel wrote to see if I had any interest in the concept (4 years and 143k+ words later, I think it’s safe to say yes–yes I did). But the story has changed very significantly since then in our minds.

So that draft did its job (get the writers interested).  Continue reading Retreat to Move Forward