Do you smell that?

What exactly am I smelling, you ask?  VICTORY!  ACCOMPLISHMENT!

Go ahead.  Take a deep breath of it.  It’s like that first scent of coffee when you open a new container.  The clean smell of fresh laundry.  That silent calm after a heavy snow when the air is pure.   Yeah, that’s it….

Today is November 30th.  The final day of NaNoWriMo.  Yes, I completed the 50,000 word goal this year!  It feels good to put that much effort into something.  I haven’t finished all of my short stories, but I am a lot further along than I was on November 1st.

The point of NaNo is to get in the habit of writing everyday, every opportunity.  You have to develop your writing muscles and exercise them regularly.  I may still not be writing every day, but the habit is growing.  I am looking forward to the challenge next year.

Now the question is what to work on next.  I do have stories to finish, plus all the projects I put on hold so I could focus on writing.  Of course, it might help if I managed to make it out of my pj’s and actually get dressed today….

 

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Rainy Days and Tuesdays….

Just not the same when you change the lyrics, is it?  Haha.

It’s cold and rainy and I just have no pizzazz today.  Maybe it’s the weather.  Maybe it’s pms.  Maybe I’m anxious for that second date since the first went pretty well.  Perhaps I have too many story characters in my head vying for position.

I’m not sure I would call this writer’s block.  In general I try not to believe in writer’s block.  I know for a fact I tend to procrastinate.  No sense in denying it.  Maybe I need to meditate more, now that’s a good possibility.  Might help me pinpoint what my malfunction is.

I am a bit distracted.  That first date I mentioned did in fact go quite well.  I’m looking forward to the next one.  I have tried to keep the words flowing this month but I admit I’m struggling.  I have several stories I’ve been working on.  Only one is actually finished.

My local NaNo writer’s group has our last write-in of the month tonight.  Let’s hope I can keep on track and actually write.  I may have to stop and pick up some extra chocolate to help with that.  Yes, I know I’m kind of rambling.  It seems appropriate for today.  At least I’m writing something, though, right?!

Whatever this malaise is I will get through it.  It aggravates me because I am trying to stop procrastinating.  It’s a hard habit to break.  But it can be done.  I will do it. Dammit.  Go ahead and tell me I can’t.  I like a challenge….

 

Structure

How well do you follow instructions?  Can you meet deadlines?  Do you work well under pressure?  I have been giving this some thought recently as I contemplate the end of NaNoWriMo.  I usually do work well under pressure.  And I definitely work better with set guidelines to follow.  Give me a set of rules and will make sure anyone involved follows those rules or dies trying.

NaNoWriMo is based on getting words on the page without worrying about structure.  Editing is not allowed. Just write until your arms fall off.  It sounds like a fun concept.  Unless you are the type of person who needs guidelines and structure.  Even with a loose goal of 1667 words each day, there is not enough pressure to perform.  So I am sitting here looking at half the word count I want,  still feeling the angst over characters who are waiting for me to bring them to life.  And what am I doing?  Yes, I know, I am writing.  And it is about NaNoWriMo.  Technically I could use the blog to add to my word count.  But that does not finish my story about a demon who is targeted by a jealous co-worker.  It does not help my aging super villain with her search for inner peace and romance.  My half elf/half giant yoga instructor is still a flop with chicks!

Yes, I will count my blog in my word count.  It is being written during November and the subject matter is NaNoWriMo.  I will keep trying to make myself stay in my chair, with extra pain meds and coffee, and keep typing until the words blur across my screen or my hands go numb.  One of these days I will figure out how to make NaNo more structured for those of us who need the extra support.  Oh, look!  Another 300 words!  So to paraphrase one of my favorite movies:  Just keep writing! Just keep writing! Just keep writing!

 

 

Open Your Eyes

Mirror, Mirror on the wall

Who’s the fairest

Of them all….

Does it really matter?  Does it really matter what anybody else thinks?  If you are honest with yourself and true to your own beliefs does it really make any difference in your actions and decisions?  I know we all have people in our lives we don’t want to alienate or hurt.  Within those parameters, are you true to yourself?  Do you show that in your actions and decisions?

I lost a friend recently.  He didn’t die, I don’t mean that.  He ended our friendship over a conflict of spiritual beliefs.  At least that is what started the argument.  I don’t have much tolerance for bullshit lately and I called him out for refusing help because of this conflict of beliefs.  I was very hurt and offended by his attitude.  But it made me stop and think.

How do you deal with people who believe differently than you do?  I grew up going to church.  I’ve always believed in God and what was taught in Sunday school.  The teaching itself is fine, once you find a way in your own mind to reconcile it with what you learn in science class.  And yes I think that is possible.  Who are we to think God would measure time in the same way we do?  It’s also pretty vain of us to assume God has nothing better to do than just make our one planet.

I don’t like pushy, in anything.  I don’t push my beliefs on anyone and I appreciate other people not doing the same.  My best friend is uber-Christian but she doesn’t push it.  She goes on her merry way, sharing what she feels is needed when it is needed.  We respect each other’s beliefs and just get on with being friends.  That was the problem I had with the friend I lost.  He had no respect for anything I believed in, called it all an illusion.

So I got to thinking.  Do I have to be wide open with my beliefs to avoid this kind of scene again?  Am I  expecting too much for other people to at least show enough respect not to disown me as a friend just because I believe differently than they do?  I don’t go out of my way to hide or broadcast my beliefs.  And even among others who believe like I do there are many differences in how people believe and how they experience their own spirituality.

I was told once that I was a very spiritual person.  I thought it was one of the best compliments I had ever received.  Still do.  My spirituality is my own business.  I know what I believe and why I do so.  I should not have to explain it to anyone unless they ask, respectfully.  I have experienced too many things to not believe the way I do.  Enjoy your spirituality, experience it in everything you do, share when you feel the need to.  Blessed be…

 

 

Soundtracks

Do you have a theme song?  Not just a favorite, we all have favorites.  Hell, I probably have a couple dozen songs I could claim as a favorite.  Depends on the genre and band.  I mean a theme song.  Something that speaks to your true nature, tells people “this is me.”  It has to say something about who you are.

Now there is the tricky part.  Do you really know who you are?  Honestly, brutally honest in your face warts and all, do you know who you are?  What about the stage of life you’re at right now?  That will affect the song, too.  Anything that speaks to your emotions will change the music.

We all have a soundtrack for life.  There are many songs on that playlist.  They change as often as we change moods.  But there is usually a theme that runs through them that defines us.  When you find the one song that sums up that theme, you have found your theme song.  If you’ve seen the pics of my tattoos you know I have a name inked at the base of my neck.  It sums up an attitude that I discovered the more I learned about myself after my marriage ended.  The stronger I get, the more that name fits me.  The attitude fits me.  It’s all sass and balls and sarcasm and it is so totally me.  I am one Foxy Bitch.

The song that sums it up is not so much about the lyrics as it is the feel of the song.  Don’t get me wrong, lyrics are important.  There’s a line out of this song that asks: What’s it gonna be?  That’s pretty much what I ask every time I look in my mirror.  What’s next?  What direction are you going in?  What will this decision mean?  I like asking those questions.  When I have to stop and think about the answers it means I am growing, I am learning something new about myself and my own motivations.  I find that very sexy, to know myself.  Everything is richer, tastes stronger, sounds louder when you know what drives it.  For now my song is about finding direction and adventure.  I’m curious what it will be when I finally find what I’m looking for.

Romancing the Word

It’s November.  That means many of us have lost all good sense and are attempting NaNoWriMo’s writing challenge.  In case you don’t know, it’s a personal challenge to write 50,oo0 words of a novel in 30 days.  It’s not impossible but it’s not easy.

Writing is like a relationship.  You have to work at it.  There has to be clear communication.  Conflict will happen and hopefully make your characters stronger when they survive it.  Sometimes you have to hurt people regardless to how much you love them.  Even the best characters need some type of torture now and then.  And yes, sometimes, you end up killing them off.  (This can be very therapeutic if you write your Ex into your story!)

NaNoWriMo is an abbreviated, accelerated version of the writing process.  You can plan ahead before November but no actual writing until 12:00 am on November 1.  Those who have attempted this before understand the tension, the stress of trying to get words on the page.

Think of it kinda like sex.  There is no time for romance or foreplay.  No flirting, no casual touches as you pass each other in the hallway.  It’s all about the passion.  When November 1 arrives it’s as if you look at your lover and suddenly have to have every inch of flesh right that very moment.  Hopefully you grab that person and devour each other with such intensity afterward you wonder… what just happened and why is my bra on the lampshade?

NaNo is not for the faint of heart.  If you only want to play nice you might as well just make some hot tea and relax until the fireworks are over.  NaNo is for writers with passion for the words on the page.  And sometimes we like it rough…