Finding a routine

It’s been longer than I’d like to admit since I’ve sat at my computer. What little writing I’ve done has been with paper and pen, and part of the creative process has been lost for me. I finally pulled out the laptop, dusted it off, and turned it on to see where I left off. It was almost as if I were looking at an archaeological find. Everything I had been working on (months ago) was still opened; the webpages were still active. In a story I had all but abandoned, I was in the middle of a sentence. It was as if time had been frozen, and I was able to travel back in time. It was cool, but eerie. But I am back right now. For how long, I can’t say because life with a toddler and infant is unpredictable.

What I’m trying to work on right now is developing a writing routine. I’m committing to writing – or doing some part of the writing process – daily. I have a tendency, as do most writers, to think about writing far more often than actually writing, and that’s not how words get written. I’m taking the next 25 days to dig deep and take action toward my writing goals, even if it’s only fifteen minutes a day, and I’m excited to see how much progress I can make in that time.

My most recent project is something that largely deviates from my normal area. It’s a middle grade chapter book that incorporates time travel, history, and science. Since I normally live on the adult end of the spectrum with books, I’m getting in touch with some of my favorite children’s literature authors (hello, Roald Dahl!) and studying what they do. I’ve read several articles about the craft of children’s lit – and, yes, it differs wildly from adult literature.

What prompted this change – almost a life-crisis of literate proportions – was that I was rocking my infant and thinking, fearing, the day he would ask me to tell him a story. I’m a good storyteller – on paper. Or in my head. Not so much out loud on the spot. It was this that prompted me to think of what kinds of stories I’d tell him, what adventures they would go on, and what would happen. A character presented himself and a story started to unfold, and before I knew it the plot became bigger than I could have predicted and turned into a series. I’m excited and nervous about this new venture into children’s lit. It’s something I haven’t done before, and my fears of failure (and success) are right under the surface. I’m holding onto the age old wisdom that nobody comes to something new being perfect (or even decent). This will be a laughable experience, especially the first story, but hopefully, if I keep my mind open, I can begin to improve and hopefully succeed.




March Madness

After I typed the title, I realized how misleading it is, considering I don’t watch basketball. I don’t even have cable television.

In any case, it’s the tail-end of March and I haven’t posted on here yet. This month has been so chaotic with appointments and growing babies that while I have been writing, albeit sparingly, it’s been with paper and pen. Even now, I’m typing this using the WordPress App on my phone.

Since it’s nearly the end of the first quarter, I wanted to post an update on my literary life. I’ve been mostly reading. It’s difficult to write while holding a newborn all day, but reading comes naturally. I’ve even taken to reading to him aloud. I’ll find out later if he retains any of these murder mystery plots and if I need to shell out for therapy. I’m currently reading book #18 of a planned total of 50 books. I still have a long way to go, but I’m making progress.

My writing goal of 400,000 words is going even slower. I’m not sure how many words I’ve written this year since more than half were hand written in notebooks. I need to count them and add them to the total.

Camp Nanowrimo is coming up in a week. My goal is to write 31,000 words, or 1,000 words per day. My toddler still goes to daycare and my newborn is somewhat on a schedule, so I can find at least thirty minutes a day to sit down and focus on this story.

For now, I’m in the planning stages. I have a rough, one paragraph summary, but that won’t hold me over all month  – and beyond. Over the next week, I will be focusing on outlining and gathering materials for April. Hopefully I’ll be able to surpass my word goal if I have a solid plan to follow.

This blog has suffered quite a bit lately, especially the weekly series I started, but I’m looking to revive some of them. I’m still in a large adjustment period and need to take it a little slower than I had been. I firmly believe that creativity, true creativity, comes from solitude and a healthy ignorance of the watch. Taking that time off from the blog has helped me refocus and find what I’m looking for. Now that I’ve identified a goal and can visualize it, I can chase after it.

Happy chasing!

On being an adult

On being an adult

This week has been one of those weeks. You know what I’m talking about: those series of days when it seems nothing can go right, and everything that can go wrong does go wrong. Except there is nothing you can do except grin and get through it. Essentially, I’m learning what it means to be an adult, and I have two little people watching me so I need to behave. Yikes. Bad news first so I can end with the positives.

My toddler decided that it would be a great idea to flush one of those massive infant bottle caps down the toilet. I’m potty training (sort of) him, and I let him flush. Fantastic idea, by the way. Now he thinks that if anything is in the toilet, it needs to be flushed. My partner, bless his heart, watched video after video on YouTube then attempted to fix the toilet himself. It wasn’t pretty, but it got done. Except the kitchen sink is clogged now for no apparent reason. It happened the same time as the toilet. That has yet to be resolved, so we’ve been subsisting off fast food for the past few days. Oh, and I have a massive foot blister that makes it oh-so-painful to walk.


I finally finished a book that I attempted to read multiple times. There was a reason it took me three tries to get into it – it didn’t start getting good until page 200, of 311 pages. Anyway, I forced myself to slush through it and now it’s done. Yay!

I also managed to find time to write. In the midst of all this plumbing drama, my Muse was working overtime. The short story isn’t finished yet, but it’s coming along. Can I tell you how good it feels to be writing? Because it feels great!

I’m moving onto a much anticipated book – “The Bazaar of Bad Dreams” by Stephen King. I’m sure my dreams will turn to nightmares any day now.

Finally, I called the speech language pathologist to schedule my toddler an appointment. It was about time. While I’ve worked in SLP before, I’m too close to my son to work with him in a therapy capacity. Putting away my pride and calling took a lot out of me, but it’s what’s best for my kiddo. Hopefully his speech will be on target this time next year. I’m looking forward to his speech blossoming.


I mention all this because I need to apologize for the last of posts the last few days. My posting schedule is all wonky right now, and I hope in the coming weeks it’ll smooth out more. Even with the best of intentions, life still happens and it’s all I can do to keep wearing a smile. Like some friends of mine say, this too shall pass.




Well, this was unexpected.

So much for my weekly updates, but I promise I have a good excuse. Here’s a little update for those who don’t follow me on Facebook or Twitter.

I managed to finish the novel I had been working on during NaNo. This is huge for me! I had never finished a novel-length manuscript before, so I’m a little overwhelmed with all the editing that needs to be done. (Really, it should just be recycled, but I’m determined to see it through.) I finished it on January 3, just after midnight.

On January 3 in the evening, I went into labor. I had barely enough time to get to the hospital before my little guy was born just after midnight on the fourth. He was nineteen days early! I vowed to finish the novel before giving birth, knowing I would have significantly less time to devote to writing afterwards, and he didn’t wait much longer after I finished.

For the past week, I barely read and didn’t write anything. It was starting to really get to me, but I loved all those baby snuggles. My Muse was still on overdrive, so while I had constant ideas there was little I could do in the way of creation. Last night, though, I sacrificed precious sleep time so I could indulge my storytelling urges. I wrote a short story, and the best part? It doesn’t suck! I’m considering submitting it to a writing contest or online magazine after I edit it. After all, I wrote it at 3am on two days of no sleep. I’m sure even the best of them would need to edit.

So, that’s what I’ve been doing since the first. It’s a far cry from what I wanted to have accomplished – my January goal was to write 30k words – but I’m investing in some other areas of my life right now. I’m finally okay with going off-course and seeing what adventures I can find myself.

Since I’m posting this from my phone and I don’t have all the numbers (not to mention adding pictures), I’ll do a proper update when I can find time to get on the laptop. Until then, happy writing and reading!