Got my two pages in this morning. I also ran in the morning and went to yoga tonight. That cut my short story time down. I’ve been working on a villanelle. What’s a villanelle? Don’t ask. I don’t even know if I spelling it right. It might be the death of me.
(I missed Day 4. Moving on.)
Every Sunday I lay out goals for the week. Usually my goals are fitness related. I like fitness goals, because I’ve taught myself to stick to them most days. The days I miss seem like a loss, but I’ve been an athlete so long I never worry about getting back on track.
Writing goals are different. I don’t know what I can get done in a day. I have big ideas and goal ideas come easily. It’s fulfilling them that’s tough. One day off track and I decide I’ll never be a writer.
A few months ago, I discovered Scribophile. It’s a critiquing website for writers. There’s a group in there called a Story a Day in September. I joined it without a clue whether that was realistic for me. So far it hasn’t been. Today I sat down and went through all of my started stories and jotted-down ideas. There are more than nineteen of them. It’s September 11. If I were to work on making each of these into some sort of story, I could pull it off.
Goal #1–Two handwritten pages of novel every day.
Goal #2–Blog post daily. If for no other reason, to remind myself to write and up the habit.
Goal #3–One 1000 word or less story taken from the list of ideas I created. Doesn’t have to be great, just has to exist. I’m lapping everyone on the couch.
By the end of the week, I should have
*14 new novel pages (which for the word counters out there is around 3,000 words)
*7 new blog posts or 7 days closer to a daily habit of thinking about writing and actually writing
*7 new short or flash stories
When I look at the total, that would be an excellent week for me. Here I go to get it done!
I know this. I know I’m too old to eat a bunch of junk food and then function well. In my twenties, I could drink all night and get up the next day. No problem. Now I eat birthday cake after lunch and I need a nap.
Although I question how well I actually operated in my twenties, I know that I eat too healthy to do what I did then. The only people I know who eat junk, drink all night, and still perform are all addicts. I don’t believe their doing their best at life. They’ve just been doing life long enough to seem like it.
This is the first blog post I’m writing at home, because my boss filled my office with pizza and cake today. Afterwards, I could barely look at my computer. My whole body hated me.
In the evenings, I’ve been working on my novel and a short story. I should be doing that right now, but lunch killed my brain. I won’t do this again. Everybody says that, I know. It seems untrue, but I’m pretty good at sticking to this stuff for a long time. I’ll do it again, but it might be six months or so. I hate this feeling of a wasted afternoon. That I must remember.
Goals are only fun on day 1 and the day completed. All the middle days suck. Occasionally, a good day will sneak in there, but you can’t count on those. If you could, you wouldn’t need the goal. You’d just move forward in fun and silliness.
There is kind of belief out there on the internet and maybe in writing books that writing should be fun. I agree with this thought to a point. I wouldn’t want to do it if there wasn’t some joy in it. But fun? Every time? Define fun. I know there is joy in a challenge. Any runner can tell you that. You won’t find that joy every day. Otherwise it wouldn’t be joy, it would just be meh.
So, today I had to drag myself over to this page. What am I going to write about today? It’s kind of funny, because yesterday, I was convinced I could find something to write about every day for a year. This is day 2 and I’m out of ideas.
Actually, I’m full of ideas. I have too many ideas for too long. I don’t know where to begin. All I know is this is the beginning. It feels like a beginning at least. Where it will go is so hard to say. Luckily, for you invisible readers who do not exist, I’m logging it all here.