ROW80

Round Two Sunday Six Strange Freedom

Happy just-past-midpoint of Round Two, everyone. It is a strange Round for me, in that I have worked every May since my youngest was a year old, and that was 24 years ago. It is a strange, but lovely, freedom. I wake up at 5:30 and start editing or writing, and fight the feeling that I am forgetting something.

Although I am checking in, I do feel I am letting my blogging and social media lapse. Yesterday was the May meeting of my local RWA chapter,  which included a lovely presentation on branding and an author platform, which, if you glance at Elizabeth Anne Mitchell, you will see needs some of my love and attention. I garnered some great ideas from the presentation, and want to try some of them out.

I also had a heartening chat with the chapter president after the meeting, where she had some suggestions in response to my whining about being such a nerd. I hope to overcome my discomfort with some of social media I tend to avoid, and try some of her suggestions as well.

As for my goals,  I have fallen down on my organizing the sabbatical space, as well as my reading criticism for a half-hour.  I had eye surgery on my right eye last Friday, and babied it for the day. However, I plan to make myself read something this evening, since I spent most of today updating my bibliography, and found a few articles I actually want to read.

I am not sure when I will get back to the office on campus, since finals continue most of this week, and campus will be nearly uninhabitable. I am working on my study space at home, making small improvements.  

Finally, since it seems our May cold snap may have ended, *speaking softly so it doesn’t return to spite me,* I will add a goal of walking at least 1 hour a day. I am spending even more time crouched over a keyboard than I do at the day job,  and I am feeling it.

I hope everyone has a wonderful, productive week. Please visit the other RoWers hereat the hashtag #row80 or in the FB group.

 

ROW80

Round Two Wednesday Six Slightly Obsessed

My thought this afternoon was How in the world is it Wednesday already? However, here it is, and here I am. I’m feeling slightly guilty this week, because I have not written my reflection post for the A-Z April Blogging Challenge. Honestly, I am having trouble balancing life and sabbatical project, and not in the way I expected. I am having a lot of trouble doing anything but the project, and have spent more than 10 hours a day on it since Sunday. Therefore, I must thank Eden for dragging me out of my hermitage for live classical music and lunch yesterday, and more importantly, for keeping me slightly sane about the project.

So, it is painfully obvious that I am meeting the write or edit at least five hours goal, to the detriment of the other goals. I did spend an hour Monday organizing the sabbatical space, but I have not touched it since then. I have not read criticism for a half-hour, but I have not given up on either the organization nor the criticism, but I am pushing them back slightly. I have been thinking about the reflection post for the A-Z April Blogging Challenge, and may write it whether I meet the deadline or not. It was an interesting experience.

Today was the last day of classes, and campus has been a nuthouse, even invading my quiet corner. I have a regional library annual meeting “do” to go to tomorrow, and have surgery on the right eye Friday morning, so I am going to take it easy for a bit.

Here’s to a lovely, productive rest of the week. Please visit the other RoWers hereat the hashtag #row80 or in the FB group.

ROW80

Round Two Wednesday Five Borrowed Digs

Although I may seem over-confident, I am checking in today, my sabbatical has started, and I think that I can keep up with check-ins for a while. Goal One, done. My A-Z blogging challenge got off to a rocky start, when I wavered about doing it this year. However, after catching up by C or D, I hit the mark all the way to Z. I’m looking forward to writing the reflection post next week.

Sunday and Monday were still under the old Write or edit for at least two hours five days a week goal. Although I spent about four hours packing my former office on Sunday, I also spent two hours transcribing notes. Monday was blessedly less busy than last week, with only one short work meeting, and a couple of staff wanting to say goodbye, which was nice. I managed to get in two hours as well on Monday.

Tuesday was the first day under the revised Write or edit for at least five hours five days a week goal. It took some time for IT to move and set up my computer in the office I am borrowing for the six month sabbatical. I also spent some time to move the books and pens and other writing accoutrements. Even so, I managed to edit for five hours, despite there being no chair (!) in the borrowed office.

Today, I wheeled my chair from the former office to the borrowed office, sat down, and sighed contentedly. I have done at least five hours today, and plan to go back to it after I finish this post.

And the last goal is also accomplished. Plan the move into the sabbatical space, for at least an hour a day for the next ten days, can now change to a short-term goal: Find the most efficient and least obtrusive organization for the sabbatical space.

Have a productive rest of the week, everyone. Visit the other RoWers in the FB group or here.

ROW80

Round Two Sunday Four: Freedom ahead

Where the magic happens
Writing Desk

The old saying, pride goeth before a fall seems relevant at the moment. I did not post last Wednesday, the first check-in I have missed since I started this Round. Why did I miss it? The major reason was last week was off the rails. Everyone at work suddenly realized I was going to be gone May 1st, and panicked. I had back-to-back meetings last Wednesday from 9am through 4:30pm, with a 20-minute break. Someone actually asked to meet with me in that 20-minute stretch, but I took joy in telling them I planned to eat lunch and I was not going to meet during my lunch. Even so, I was completely exhausted, and couldn’t even muster the strength to put a comment on FB. I fell short of the Work toward more consistency in my check-ins goal.

However, I did post T-Y in the  A-Z blogging challenge this week. I looked at my draft for Z, and decided that I needed to find a different subject for Z. I wrote the post yesterday, and it is scheduled to go up tomorrow. Therefore, I did meet the goal: Post the A-Z blog challenge posts.

Despite the ridiculous work week, and a day spent in medical appointments, I continued transcribing handwritten notes into the sabbatical project, meeting the Write or edit for at least two hours five days a week goal.

As for the goal, Plan the move into the sabbatical space, for at least an hour a day for the next ten days, I finished that packing last week, and got most of the packing for the permanent move done as well. I am going to my office today to finish up what is not going to the sabbatical space.

Finally, I will be able to increase my writing goal on May 1 to Write or edit for at least five hours five days a week.

Have a lovely week, everyone. Please visit the other RoWers here or in the FB group.

 

ROW80

Round Two Sunday Three

Wow, folks, I am on a roll. Here I am checking in again. I am still posting more consistently, even beyond the A-Z blogging challenge. Since all the posts were 90% written before April started, I can’t count them as proving consistency now. However, I am checking in more consistently than I have since, oh, 2016 or so. I have to tweak Y and Z, but T through X are scheduled.

After a rocky start last week, I did manage to write or edit for at least two hours a day Wednesday through Saturday. A lot of it was transcribing handwritten notes into a piece, but no one was going to magically do it for me, so it counts.

On the theme of life finding reasons to give one perspective, I looked back at the goal I set last Wednesday: Plan the move into the sabbatical space, for at least an hour a day for the next ten days. My perspective was altered by my boss, who told me Thursday morning that I have to vacate my current office by close of business April 30. Although my current office is a cubicle, it is a large “Head of Department” cubicle, with floor to ceiling windows. I have to move to a cubicle about half the size, with no windows. I regret even more how much I have accumulated in this office over the past six-plus years.

Need I say that I am looking forward to my sabbatical? I met my goal of planning for the move today, after 7 hours of packing. I am now going to concentrate on maintaining my writing goal: Write or edit for at least two hours five days a week, and increasing it on May 1.

Excelsior, everyone. I had to learn Longfellow’s poem of that title in third grade–imagine my surprise when I moved to New York State and saw the motto on the flag: Excelsior. Have a lovely week. Please visit the other RoWers here  or in the FB group.

ROW80

Round Two Wednesday Three

 

Here I am for my second check-in since posting goals. Therefore, I am meeting my first goal, of posting more consistently. The A-Z blog challenge posts are posted (today P was posted) or scheduled (Q-S are scheduled tomorrow through Saturday).

Unfortunately, I did fail to meet my third goal, of editing or writing for two hours a day. I managed to get at least one hour a day, so the habit is still there, but I spent most of my writing time pulling together the books and papers I will need for the sabbatical. There are many in my office at work. And those I do not need, I want to return so that I don’t get notices to return them. While I will be in town most of the time, I do not want to keep traipsing into my office to get things I forgot. Since I realized that I had so much preparation to do, I am going to add another goal for the next two weeks: Plan the move into the sabbatical space, for at least an hour a day for the next ten days.

I am going to keep my writing goal, (Write or edit for at least two hours five days a week) for now, in hopes that I can adjust my schedule to allow for both goals. I think I was caught by surprise by the amount of books, articles, and the like I have squirreled into my work office.

I feel confident that I can keep to my other goals of posting more consistently, and of completing the A-Z blogging challenge.

Have a lovely rest of the week, everyone. Please visit the other RoWers here or in the FB group.

 

ROW80

Round Two Sunday Two

 

Although it is officially the fourth check-in for Round Two, I only posted my goals last Wednesday, so I have not made the progress of my compatriots. Even so, I am going to stick with the official check-in numbers. Otherwise I will confuse my compatriots, and myself in the bargain.

I had minimal goals for the beginning of this Round, for several reasons. The day job has been brutal since the beginning of this Round (April 2nd), and will not lessen in intensity until I walk out on April 30th for a six-month sabbatical. Also, I have eye surgery in May, which should not affect my sight for a long time, but I would rather increase the goals once I am past it than have to scale back.

All that said, I have done quite well so far. I can see that I would not be able to keep up with the Blogging A-Z challenge had I not drafted all the posts in advance. It is also good in showing me what amount of posting is comfortable for me.

Finally, I find that I am more able to edit than write new words during these last few weeks at the day job. I feel quite sure that I will move more toward composition once I am on sabbatical.

Work toward more consistency in my check-ins. Well, here I am after my first post last Wednesday. So far, so good.

Post the A-Z blog challenge posts. Yes, I have posted A through M. N through S are scheduled to post this week, and I will do final edits on T through Z next weekend.

Write or edit for at least two hours five days a week. More editing than writing, but it counts.

On another note, I am sitting by my fireplace in my woolies. The high today was 35F, and freezing rain is forecast for tonight. Sigh. I just finished a woolen scarf for my son, and woolen socks for my husband. Who knew they would be so welcome in mid-April?

 

ROW80

Round Two 2018 Goals

I am starting this Round late, although I know that late is better than never, especially in the challenge that “knows you have a life.” I am starting very small, and will add more goals when my day job calms down in a few weeks. So, here they are, in all their simplicity:

Work toward more consistency in my check-ins.

Post the A-Z blog challenge posts.

Write or edit for at least two hours five days a week.

 

Please check out the goals of other ROWers, which you can find here.

 

 

ROW80

Round One–Week Eight in the Rear View Mirror

The past few weeks have not led to any blogging, so I clearly am not meeting that goal. Things are generally better they were when last I posted, so I’m pleased about that. My sleep is still not where I want it to be, but there is definite progress. In part, I was thrown off by having a conference in Denver. The change in time zone was exacerbated by getting back to town at midnight; my poor psyche didn’t have a clue what time it was for a day or two. I have been using essential oils (thank you for the suggestion, Chris Kincaid), as well as turning off screens an hour before I go to sleep. Both methods help immensely.

Despite not blogging, I have been continuing to plan the A-Z blog posts for April, so that goal is coming along. I have also put in many hours on the sabbatical project. I have been hyperfocussed (ADD is sometimes handy), and spent over twelve hours this weekend working on it. The fiction is simmering in the background, but I can’t seem to give more than a few minutes a day to it. The good news is that I will be at the point where the non-fiction and the fiction intertwine in about a week, so there may be more synergy there.

I’m not at the point of giving up any goals, although I am falling behind on keeping the day job at bay as well as neglecting the blogging. I believe both goals are still within reach, if I just stretch a bit.

How are you doing with your goals? Just in your grasp, or still just beyond your fingertips? Whichever it may be, I hope everyone has a productive week.

ROW80

Round One, Week 3–Slow Progress

Last week was somewhat slow, but I managed to be purposeful and to do some writing in the evenings, which is very unusual for me. Last Wednesday, I decided to change my routine slightly, and posted WIPpet Wednesday as a stand-alone on my Lapidary Prose blog, rather than folding it into a RoW80 check-in. Monday, I posted a quotation from Eleanor Roosevelt for Martin Luther King Day on my named blog, and Friday I posted a video as part of resuscitating a Friday Laugh tradition, also on my Elizabeth Mitchell blog.  Here I am with a (almost late) Sunday check-in, so I have more than achieved my goal of two posts weekly.

I’m still hobbling about a bit, and not sleeping well, since my knee is still swollen from the fall last week. The only good thing about waking up at three a.m. is that several of my characters also like to ruminate in the middle of the night. The main male character in a piece I’m writing for the WIPpet was a peripheral character for the past decade in my 14th-century novel, but he swept out of the shadows with gusto a few weeks ago.

The A-Z planning is coming along, although I have to fight the scattershot brain that can think of four to five more topics that would be fun and interesting. I try to calm the brain by writing these ideas down for further exploration.

I have no problem this week writing five sentences of fiction a day. Happily, I’ve been able to write some non-fiction as well. Sleeping three to four hours a night helps immeasurably with that, although I don’t think I can keep this schedule up for long.

And, for my last goal, I have been very good about not working this weekend, except for my research, which doesn’t feel like work, honestly. In continuing to look through and consolidate my electronic files, I was delighted to find a copy of over thirty pages I wrote about fifteen years ago, which I had thought lost. Although it needs editing and updating, it was such a boon to find it.

The capstone of the week was a conversation last night about alternative histories with my younger son, who mentioned several scenarios that he thought would make great stories–and I agree. Now all those plot bunnies are floating around in my head, which is a very nice feeling.

I hope everyone is having a good week.