30 September 2012

The Back and Forth of Decision Making

Why is it that some days seem to linger on endlessly while others vanish in but a blink? The past week has been a strange blend of these kinds of days. I am left feeling quite accomplished and like I haven't done anything at all. I have a feeling that's just how it's going to be for awhile.

Right now, I am faced with a difficult decision. To NaNoWriMo or not to NaNoWriMo, that is the question. The truth is, I don't know that I'm going to have the time (or the sanity) to do it, the 50,000 new words in one month. My schedule from 10/15-11/15 is intense (and I'm not sure it will ease off until the new year) and I'm so worried I won't have the literal time to do it and sleep.

Every day I go back and forth, weighing pros against cons and every day I come up with a different answer. I want to desperately. But I'm afraid of failing.

You see, that's one of my flaws.

That fear of failing.

For the worse (or for the better?), I don't like to do things I can't be successful at. It's not that I don't take chances, because I do. I just don't like to knowingly set myself up for failure.

That is different. Right?

And what's the real harm if I don't finish? I've still started a new project. And if I only get 75 pages instead of 160? Isn't that still awesome?

But will it cause additional stress at a time when I'll already be pushed to my limits? Is that worth it?

In a few days I head off to my favorite coastal escape and am looking forward to breathing the salty air and walking along the Pacific. I'm hoping I'll find my answer there.

17 September 2012

Digging Up Memories

The last few weeks I've been digging through closets and boxes and unearthing all sorts of magical, time traveling things...like the adoption papers for one of my Cabbage Patch Kids...a musical I started (and never finished) in middle school...my Mock Trial notebook (and notecards!) from high school. So many memories from my thirty some years wrapped up in one box!

I'm not the kind of person who has to keep every sentimental thing. Moving around taught me how to let go. But for the last seven and a half years I've been anchored to the same spot and that has allowed for a bit more accumulation, which is why I've been reorganizing and purging. For me, it's really not so much about the thing, it's about the memories associated with that thing. When I pulled those adoption papers out of that box, I was flooded with memories of the day I took Cy Buddy home.

I had gone shopping with my grandma and grandpa in Fergus Falls, MN and we ended up in a store with Cabbage Patch Kids. I picked Cy because he had these wonderful blue glasses and he seemed like a nice kid. We went back to Wahpeton, ND and took pictures of me and my new "baby." I know those pictures are around somewhere...

All week long I've been thinking about those grandparents and all the wonderful things we did together over the years. My grandma died of cancer when I was a senior in college and this past January my grandfather passed away. For most of my life I have lived over a thousand miles away from all of my grandparents. But they were all a big part of my life. It could have been otherwise.

Growing up, I spent every summer (except the one I went to Germany) traveling between sets of grandparents. I got to know them, be spoiled by them, and full-heart love them. Same with my aunts and uncles. Distance is only a problem of you let it be and we never let it.

And today, I'm missing them very, very much.

09 September 2012

Enjoy the Silence

I've been feeling rather quiet lately. It's not that I haven't had much to say, it's more that I haven't felt like saying it. I don't think I can explain why. Nor do I think I want to.

Here are two of the things I haven't been talking about:

1) The other day, I think I finished my book rewrite. I'm not exactly sure, as I need to get some outside perspective before I'm ready to say definitively. This version is so very different from the last version and yet fundamentally the same. It is even closer to my original intention...funny how that can happen after so much revision and the cutting of over 150 pages from the manuscript. I changed a few character names (Holden and Jezebel will always be Holden and Jezebel), including one pretty major character. I don't recommend doing so on your third major rewrite. I found the old name slipping in repeatedly. So grateful for Find & Replace!

2) I've been on vacation. Unless you work with me, or are married to me, you probably didn't know this. This was my Calm Before the Storm vacation. It has been amazing and the time has been exactly what I needed it to be, bending to my will. I have done a great deal of writing. I went to the dentist (due to the notes in my chart about passing out (from the only other time I had a cavity filled) they gave me a totally awesome drug to take beforehand...and let's just say I will lock my phone away before I ever take that medication again). I reorganized virtually every closet in our entire house and some frustrating kitchen cabinets, donated two car loads of stuff to Goodwill, and made great strides towards uncluttering. I watched Dawson's Creek, new Doctor Who, The Daily Show, and the Colbert Report. I played Rock Band, sat in the sun, went for walks. It has been amazing.

Tonight I am relaxing in the library. My iPod is on shuffle. A bottle of wine has been opened. Socks (Socks!) have been placed on feet. Zelda's passed out behind me. It's a perfect night to cozy up with a good book...or two. And for those who are curious, I am jostling between Libba Bray's Going Bovine and Jess Walter's Beautiful Ruins. Two very different and equally wonderful books.