ROW80 Check-in November 6, 2011

Happy Sunday to all!

November feels like I am at the top of the 10-foot-tall slide in the neighborhood park when I was a kid.  I have acrophobia, a fear of heights, so there is a mixture of excitement and fear in my stomach at the thought of the fast slip from top to bottom of the slide, but in the common way of that sort of thing, I enjoyed the flirt of fear.

As I get older, the years go by more quickly; November starts that end-of-the-year slide that glides by so breathlessly that it is January 1st in a heartbeat.  This year, I find myself lingering at the top of the slide, looking back to see the distance from where I was this time last year.  Along with my life goals, I am continuing to tinker with my writing goals.  To that end, I have a few questions at the end of the check-in.

Health: I lost 0.7 pounds since last Sunday; so I met my goal of 0.5-1.0 pound per week. I felt crummy for three of the past four days, so I have not exercised as planned.  I am eating well, though, resisting the temptation to “baby” myself.

Family:  I was in contact with both sons in the past few days; I also emailed my brother last Thursday.  Plans are still continuing to do the conference calls.
The “date night” with my husband was the two-hour drive from picking him up from the airport at 10pm last night.  Oh well, one takes the opportunities one can.  Actually, we have done so many long drives like that so often in our past, they are good times to discuss all manner of things, except during Atlanta’s rush hour traffic, where all we can say is prayers and imprecations.

My husband was very bummed that our plans to go see my eldest step-daughter this weekend were delayed by him having tests done; the surgeon has not yet called him back about the results, which heightens his nail-biting.   As much as I say that no news is good news, and that one of the top hospitals in the country is not going to spare his feelings if something is wrong, my husband is not the type to believe that.  He thinks the worst.  Even before the tests, he was telling me where to put his urn.  At least he responds well to my teasing him unmercifully about it.
Friends:  I did meet my goal of contacting one friend this week.

Writing:  A bit of a fail on the writing.  I need the books from the library, which I will pick up tomorrow, and I am not good at waiting for things like that.  I spent some time re-reading some of the books I’m going to review and taking notes on them, but am not as far as I would like.

Also, my dogs go into ninja protector mode when I am here alone with them.  There were a bunch of football-related parties over the weekend, so the dogs reacted to the slightest noises in the night.  A car door slamming?  Grab the extra magazine, Brigid, the Armageddon is here!  I will admit, however, that when someone (probably a drunken someone; the condos all look alike, but c’mon) put a key in the front door at 2:30am on Saturday morning, releasing the Krakens of my dogs, I was happy that they were here, no matter how much sleep I lost in the process.

Creative writing: I continued to mull over blog themes and topics, but have only taken notes, not completed any posts.

Day job:  There is some plague going around work, and I seem to have picked it up from shared workstations.  I will no longer smile behind my hand at the people who wipe down the keyboard and desk; they are not sick and I am.  Hmm.

Also, I was “invited”  to a meeting on Veteran’s Day, which is a holiday for us, and I said no.  It is the first time in many, many years that I have done that, so I feel that was a big victory.

So my question for you is:  When deciding what topics to post on your blogs, did you follow your interests, poll your readers, track which posts got comments, or a combination of some of these tactics? I have read a lot about tailoring the blog posts to the potential readers, but I think there are genres that fit more easily into that than others.  I may just post some ideas on Lapidary Prose, but I wanted to get your ideas first.  Any comments are welcome!
For easy reference, these are my goals:
Health: Lose ½ pound to 1 pound a week
Exercise 45 minutes a day 5 days a week
Stop purchasing and eating empty calorie foods.
Family: Contact each of the kids every week.
Devote one weekend evening to time with my husband.
Friends: Contact one friend a week until contact is well established.
Continue to contact my closest friends at least once a week; unless that is unworkable for them, and adjust accordingly.
Writing:  1½ hours a day, 7 days a week, on the articles I have to publish.
½ hour a day, 7 days a week, on the dissertation.
½ hour a day, 7 days a week, on creative writing.
2 hours a week writing a book review until I am caught up. I have read 10 novels or novellas by RoW80 participants and will write those first; I have 6 written by other authors which will come next; I have 6 more by RoW80 participants that I need to read that will be next.
Day job: Disappear from the face of the earth on days off, vacations, and evenings. That means do not answer the phone, do not check work email, do not go to the office “just to finish up this one little thing.”
Work 40 hours a week.

16 thoughts on “ROW80 Check-in November 6, 2011”

  1. You have so many goals! It’s hard to keep this many things up to par all at the same time – don’t be too hard on yourself. Best of luck for this week! Keep up the good work!

    1. Thanks, Lauren. I have to remember I’m not a superhero, but tell my perfectionist side that! Thanks for coming by and being so supportive! I see you blazing through the sprints on Twitter–good job! I hope you have a great week 🙂

  2. Nice job on your goals Elizabeth despite life’s hurdles. I so know what you mean about November, I used to hate this time of year but so far I’m feeling pretty good about it. For my blog posts, I followed my interests and am trying to do a few different things with it, hoping to get a supernatural themed post going which is the genre my longer fiction falls into. Hope all goes well with your husbands tests, it is the not knowing that plays on your mind.

    1. Thanks for the encouragement, Katy. I think your suggestions about the blog posts are good ones. I spent some time this past week finding things that better fit the historical fiction bent. I hope you have a lovely week!

  3. Good for you for trying to read. Now I am reading more blogs than anything else. I really need to get back to books.

    When I blog, I blog about what I’m thinking about (as it related to writing mostly) I blog to get it “straight in my head” when I learn something, and I find that a lot of people enjoy reading my “rants” because they are learning too. It’s a win-win.

    1. I find that reading helps with the writing, and not just things in my genre. I have gotten a lot more critical, but there is a lot of good writing out there. I do find that I have less patience with bad writing, though. I like your suggestion about the blog posts; I often write about things to figure them out. Have a great week. 🙂

  4. Wow, so many goals! And nice job on working on them 😉
    As for blogging … I go with my gut. If I see a topic that interests me going around, I might post something about it on my blog, or I take note of it to maybe write about it later.
    I would like to blog more about writing but don’t fell confident about it enough … so I mostly blog about things that inspire me to write … and hot topics going around the publishing/writing/reading industry 😉

    1. Thanks, Juliana. I think I’m a bit of a scatterbrain, so the more goals the better, lol. I am the same way with the blog–I sometimes see things that I have a reaction to, and want to write about, so I note where I saw it for later use. I don’t feel confident blogging about writing either–I’m glad I’m not alone.

  5. It sounds like you’re doing well on the goal front! Good luck with the upcoming week.

    I’m still trying to find the balance for my blog. Right now I’m running a Meet the Cards series for the Gaian Tarot but don’t really have any themes or series otherwise. I don’t do a lot of writing related posts mostly because there is so much out there and I feel I’m more at a learning point than a teaching point. So in the end, no advice 🙂

    1. Thanks, Raelyn! And I’m loving the Meet the Cards series–and that is advice, despite your thinking it isn’t. It’s something that interests you and that you know a lot about. That’s good! I’m definitely on the learning side of writing, too, unless it is freshman English–wow, wouldn’t that be exciting! 😀

  6. ROWsis, I’m so proud of all that you’ve managed to accomplish this week! Congrats on being able to say no to the Veterans’ Day “invite,” and yay on meeting your weight loss goals!

    I have such a love/hate relationship with November. When it rolls around, I greet it with a bit of excitement, but all I want to do is just skip over the first three weeks or so, and get straight to Thanksgiving, the end of the quarter, and Winter break. I want the holidays, darn it!

    I will be sending good vibes and prayers your way as you wait on the results of your husband’s tests. Have a great week!

    1. Thank you, ROWsis! I appreciate the good vibes and prayers. Luckily, it looks like my husband will not need further surgery, so that was good news.

      I want the holidays, too, and there is all this time between November 1 and Thanksgiving. What is up with that, LOL! I see you blazing on those sprints on Twitter, and have popped by on the NaNo site you and Em set up. I hope the time between now and Turkey Day go well for you!

  7. It is really nice to see lots of life goals creeping in there and well done on your weightloss.

    With regards to blog posts I enjoy anything to do with writing and reading but that is what my focus is on at the moment and what I want to learn more about. I think anything that interests you is bound to interest others so write about whatever you find interesting.

    Have a great week!

    1. Thank you, Em. I just needed to find a balance in my life, or at least try to! I appreciate your thoughts on the blog posts; I don’t feel confident giving writing advice, so I’m tending toward your advice of writing what interests me. I have a lot of book reviews to do, too. I hope you have a wonderful week, too!

  8. Hoo-boy, you’re a busy, busy lady! Sounds like you’ve got some great balance/prioritization happening (do a detect a soupcon of Franklin Covey in your goals?).

    Good luck this week–and don’t tire yourself out!

    1. Franklin Covey, moi?? Ha, busted. I just found myself spending way too much time on things that weren’t that important to me, so I changed things to fit better their importance to me. Thanks for coming by, Cate. as it happened, I got a massive cold, so I may have over-extended a bit (oops). Have a great week 🙂

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