Thursday, July 8, 2010

What's Going Right?

So often, my blog posts seem to revolve around writing challenges. Things that aren't working for me as a writer.

But for the past two weeks things have been going pretty well. As I write this, I'm up to page 28 of my current work-in-progress, the middle grade novel I was so uncertain about how to start in my blog post of two months ago.

It's actually flowing!

So for today, I thought I'd write a different sort of a blog post. I thought I'd try to analyze what's going right:

The first thing that's going write is that I decided that I would write for 15 minutes a day. (Thanks, Tricia!)

Finding time to write with two young children has often seemed impossible. But the first day that I had promised myself to write for 15 minutes, I sat down after my oldest went to bed and started writing. And, when my 15 minutes was up, I had no desire to stop. In fact, I have kept on writing in every spare moment I can find for the past two weeks.

I discovered that even in what sometimes seems a crazy busy life there are free moments. It's up to me to choose what to do with them. Do I turn on the t.v. and watch something I could care less about to relax after a hard day or do I curl up with my computer and work on my novel? The choice is up to me (and lately I've been making the right choice most of the time :o) ).

And then there are chores. Endless chores. Sometimes it seems like I shouldn't work on my writing because many items on my "to do list" remain undone. But, no matter how hard I work, there will always be items left to do. If I want to be a writer (and I want to be a writer!) I've got to write. I can't make my writing dependent on getting everything else done first or I will never have time to write (which felt like what was happening for a while).

But most of all, what seems to be going right for the past few weeks is that I'm having so much fun. There are times when I'm writing and it feels like tough, hard work and there are times when it feels like play. Right now, it feels like play. I'm not letting myself stress about how perfect it is, I'm just having fun telling a story.

So, the next time I'm having trouble getting into a flow, I'll try to remind myself some of the things that worked for me now. And, if I get too stressed to remind myself, please chime in and remind me.

So, what's going right for you? (And, if things aren't going right for you right now, what worked for you in the past that might work again? :o) )


  1. Good question!
    Right now my son is taking a class, which leaves me a few hours every morning just to write.

  2. What's going right for me is we're leaving for vacation tomorrow and because we're going to have company for all but two days of the next two weeks, with good conscience I can bag writing and enjoy our yearly gathering of the whole family.

    Of course, those grandchildren may spark ideas to work on later!

  3. Glad to hear some things are going right!

  4. Whoops! Pressed send too early this time (after my comment disappeared the first two times I tried to post-- maybe things aren't going as well as I thought ;o) )

    Lily Cate-- The same thing is going right for me too. My oldest is now busy in summer camp four mornings a week. Hopefully my productivity continues when camp ends for the summer!

    Gale-- Have a wonderful vacation! A gathering with the whole family sounds fantastic. (And those grandchildren sound sure to spark some good ideas!)

  5. oh my god, good for you!!!! It's not so bad when you get moving, huh? told ya. Recently I was having such a HARD time staying motivated to keep writing b/c my kids were whiny, my house unkempt, and I was very very tired. So here's what I did--an hour every morning, kids eat their cereal in front of the tv watching Dora while Mommy gets "work" done, aka trying to finish up my manuscript. Then during the afternoon, kids follow me around and "help" with chores. I am feeling MUCH more at peace and less like a failure that my house is in such disarray while my WIP is STILL NOT DONE! But it's getting there. Hit 20K words today, woo hoo! And outlined the remainder of the book so I know where it's going. Good luck and be happy for getting such great work done. Good for you!!!!!

  6. What's going right with me is that I'm consistently writing at the same time practically everyday.

  7. What's going right for me . . . I leave tomorrow for my third VCFA Residency! Whoo Hooo! I'll get a new advisor and will be back with new motivation and guidance!

    Also, life is just good, so everything is going right, really.

  8. Over the past few weeks, I've had a hard time with routine, and I thrive on routine with my writing. But between school ending, my older son moving into his first apartment, work being done on my house, etc., I haven't gotten back into my rhythm. But here is the good news. Younger son goes to sleep-away camp for two-and-a-half weeks. No one home but my husband, me, and the dog. I'm looking forward to massive word counts!

  9. This is really fun to hear what's going right with everybody!

    Ammie-- Thanks so much for the cheering section! Your plan to get writing done sounds great! (And I totally understand about trying to balance household organization and writing. My house went completely crazy when I really got started writing. I just took the time to straighten up when I couldn't stand it anymore. Now it's pretty good and I'm back on a roll with writing! :o) )And congrats on hitting 20K! Wow! I'm just above 6K now and this already feels really long to me!

    Medeia-- Wow! Consistently writing at the same time every day is an incredible accomplishment! That consistency must be really helpful.

    Meg-- Have a great time in Vermont! Can't wait to hear about your residency when you get back! (And so glad to hear that life is good! That is also one of the things that seems to be helping my writing productivity. It's a lot easier to write when I'm not super-stressed about other things.)

    J.A.-- Sorry your routine is off. I definitely know how hard those times are! Sleep away camp sounds wonderful! (I'm already imagining the day when my guys will be old enough. :o) )

  10. Your post inspired me to take a bite out of my WIP! Okay, maybe a nibble. My first chapter is being critiqued by my writer's group tomorrow! After a few weeks of feeling derailed...I definitely feel like I'm back on track!