Wednesday, September 30, 2009

Day -32 and counting

Autumn is definitely here. We haven't started the woodstove yet and it's really cool this morning so I'm wearing a sweatshirt while I'm working. I've gotten caught up from the weekend and I wrote four articles yesterday which is a really big deal for me. One in and one in as well as here in this blog and Simply Living. I've committed to writing another book after A Coward's Solace. This other book is a nonfiction book called: Wraps--Coming Full Circle in Weight Control. I'm planning to make this a self published book. I want to market it myself and I'd like to assist others with an affiliate program where we can help each other sell our books by writing reviews for each other and placing them all over the internet. If it works with a nonfiction book, I'm going to try it with my novels as well. If anyone is willing to work with me on this project. (I'll start this after the NaNoWriMo with Coward's and after I finish writing WRAPS which should be around the first of the year. ) If anyone is interested in working with me on this project where not only you help me sell my book but I'll help you sell yours, contact me at my email address: and I'll get back to you with more information when January rolls around. If you're writing a novel for NaNoWriMo, maybe we can market that book. Maybe this will give YOU the incentive you need to get your book written so you too can get it published. If you already have a book published and need help marketing it on the web, Let me know that too. Maybe we could make an arrangement where I can begin helping you sell your book online even before the first of the year. We writers don't have to work alone. If we learn to work together and pool our resources and skills, we can make more money than we would have going the traditional route of going through an agent and then publishing through a traditional publishing house and do it in less time. With some of these self-publishing companies, you can have an ebook out in less than 24 hours. Sure beats the 12-24 months it usually takes to get a book published. Most of the online marketing success with books has been in writing nonfiction books. I think the novel has been overlooked as a source of online book sales because it's still in its infancy. I think there's a big potential for marketing novels online without being ripped off if we writers learn to work together. I'm here right now just open for dialogue with other writers who want to keep more of the money that their booksales and sell more books than they might otherwise have sold EVEN THROUGH A TRADITIONAL PUBLISHER. The potential is there if we'd just birth it.

Tuesday, September 29, 2009

Day -33 and counting

I just wrote a blog on my other blog: that tells about Myrtle Yester-daze and what it's like living here in this area. I'd be honored if you'd check it out.

It's been a bit of a let down for my daughter now that her BIG event is over. Although she's still a princess to her family, the kids at school are reminding her that she's still just Boni Brown their classmate.

For me, the weekend was a practice of living in the moment. One of the things I have a habit of doing is to live in the future even when what is going on is a big event. So this weekend I decided I was going to not think about writing (much) and concentrate on making the memory with my daughter. I find it amazing that not only did my relationship with my daughter improve but it gave me more prospective on my writing. I've got several things to draw on to write about that I didn't have Friday.

Yesterday I didn't get much writing done. Because we were out all weekend, I didn't keep up with the housework so I needed to get the house whipped back into shape before I threw myself back into writing. It took me most of the day yesterday to finish that. My husband is enough of a male chauvinist that getting the house back in order benefited our relationship. So now that my relationships with my husband and daughter have been reinforced, I can selfishly return, unashamedly back to my writing.

It's hard to believe that in just 33 days, the 2009 NaNoWriMo begins.

Monday, September 28, 2009

Check out my New Book Store

I'm so excited about my new bookstore. Follow the links to my new online bookstore affectionately known as Cygnet's Bookstore!

Day -34 and counting

Wow! It's been a busy weekend. You wouldn't know it by the fact that I haven't written in here, but maybe you would. I think I mentioned in my last blog that my daughter was to be a participant in a beauty pageant that night (Friday). I really didn't think she'd win. Those things are usually rigged right? The judges get bought off by wealthier families or well known families in the community who can afford to give a lot toward a cause. A seemingly noble gesture but one with a price. Their darling daughter must win the pageant. Well guess what? That didn't happen in this pageant. My daughter won in the 5-9 year old age division and there were ten other girls competing. The largest number of girls in any of the categories. She was so happy.

I was talking to the school's art teacher after the event and we were discussing our views on pageants in general. Though neither one of us, would have considered participating in this type of event ourselves, we didn't fault those who enjoyed this type of competition.

Don't think that there isn't skill involved in pageant competition because there is. If you'd have seen the difference between the skill of the winners and a lot of the once who didn't place, you'd see that there truly is skill involved. A pageant contestant has to think in a lot of the same ways that a writer has to think. Not only do they have to think about what feels good and natural to them, but they also have to think about and cater to their audience. Not only does a contestant have to do her moves flawlessly but she also has to relate to her audience (which includes the judges) in a way that draws the audience in. In the same token, a writer has to not only get into the flow and feel good about what she's doing while she is writing but she also has to (at least in the editing stages) has to reel in her audience--the reader.

The other day I read two different articles on the same topic and the first one was okay. I enjoyed it but the second was much better. That article had an undercurrent that sucked me in and wouldn't let me go. Most of my articles I would say are more like the first. It's alright but it doesn't draw you into the current. I need to consider my reader more. As a writer, I want to be more like the winners and less like those who didn't place.

Friday, September 25, 2009

Day -37 and counting

Today I didn't do much in the way of writing. Instead I opened a bookstore. That's right. I opened a book store on my website There's still construction Cygnet's Writer Approach but you should be able to find the link to the bookstore. The bookstore looks great. I'm selling bestsellers, Christian books, Bibles and makeup--Avon and Bare essentials. I also started writing on hubpages today. I got in trouble there though because I copied off of my blog from yesterday and pasted it in my hubpage. I won't be doing that again. But I will be writing about authors there. I'm taking the idea I had two days ago and running with it. I'm learning a little bit about how to get information and how to get it out on the web. It's a great learning experience and the best part of it is that I'm not spending any of my husband's hard earned cash to do what I'm doing. There's so many things I probably could be doing with my writing on line but I'm really still trying to get my footprints all over the web. My head is buzzing with all the new information I'm accumulating. I just hope that it adds up to something in the pocket book and soon. I'd like to be able to discover at the end of November that not only did I finish my newest novel but I also made more money than I'd thought possible during that month.

Thursday, September 24, 2009

Day -37 and counting

I read a quote today made my Ursula K LeGuin that made me go look her up. The quote was this:
"The creative adult is the child who has survived."

I think this is part of my deal lately and why I've been whining. I haven't been allowing my inner child out to play much lately. There were a couple of days there where I let it go and let my inner child just say what she wanted to but then the editor in me had to go to work and put the child away to play quietly in the shadows while the adult editor got to work. This whole thought process got me to wondering more about this woman.

I googled her. I found that she is an author of more than 3 dozen books. She was awarded the Newbery Honor for the second Volume of Earthsea Cycle, The Tombs of Atuan. Among her many other distinctions are the Margaret A Edwards Award, a National Book Award and five Nebula Awards.

Her work includes six volumes of poetry, twenty novels, over 100 short stories, four collections of essays, eleven books for children and four volumes of translation. She calls Portland, Oregon--home.

I read an interview about her at where she was describing her views on writing and the part of the interview that really impressed me was when she said:

"I have never heard a dancer asking for advice about how to stay focused on her footwork, or a painter complaining about the dull day-to-day task of painting. What task worth doing isn't worth daily effort? Do you think Michelangelo was having fun the whole time he was on his back painting the Sistine Chapel's ceiling?

What is it with writers, anyhow? If you've done it long enough to have some skill, the making of any art or craft gives you continuous satisfaction. But the satisfaction is seldom a thrilling or instant reward. There is rarely a moment of "Ooh wow, look, I just created a masterpiece!"

I am going to be rather hard-nosed and say that if you have to find devices to coax yourself to stay focused on writing, perhaps you should not be writing what you're writing. And, if this lack of motivation is a constant problem, perhaps writing is not your forte. I mean, what is the problem? If writing bores you, that is pretty fatal. If that is not the case, but you find that it is hard going and it just doesn't flow, well, what did you expect? It is work; art is work. Nobody ever said it was easy. What they said is: "Life is short, art is long.""

I read this and I know that writing is what I need to be doing and I realize too that it's not for everyone. I've seen people who've written here on the internet and couldn't put two coherent words together. I've read others who when they didn't make instant big money on the articles that they wrote, they left whining blaming the site for their inadequacies. The truth is writing is work and we owe ourselves and our writing the time it takes to pay our dues.

Wednesday, September 23, 2009

Day -38 and counting

Time seems to be flying by. Do you realize that there is only 100 days left in 2009? Wow! Where has the time gone. I looked over my New Year's Resolutions for this year and although I've made progress since the beginning of the year in the areas that I resolved to change, I don't think I've met one of those goals yet. In writing, I've written quite a lot buy I haven't got much to show for my work monetarily. I'm also disappointed that no one has picked up on my book When God Turned His Head. I'm thinking seriously about self-publishing. It's not necessarily what I really want to be doing. I'd rather be writing but I've got to do something to get my writing before the public. In times past, a starving artist was considered a noble thing. Now, it's considered stupid. If I don't have someone willing to publish my book by the time A Coward's Solace has been written then I know I'll have to do my own self publishing. My mind keeps going back to The Shack. Because of the kind of novels I've written, my books could be self published and self marketed and the market could grow over time. I could get affiliates to read the book as an ebook then review my novels in press releases all over the internet. Maybe I could develop a system where I could take one step further for novels and become an online agent to help others promote their books both on the net and in the real world. It seems like a wonderful idea but I think I'd better finish A Coward's Solace first. Then I'll have the trilogy finished so that I will be able to focus my time at marketing the trilogy. (Of course, I'll just put out one book in the triliogy at a time that way I'll build readership over time) I'm thinking though, if I get the book polished and ready by the first of the year, this whole idea could be a reality within the first quarter of next year. Anybody want to join me and help me promote my books and have me help you promote your book?

Tuesday, September 22, 2009

Day -39 and counting

Just 39 more days until 2009 NaNoWriMo. It's a lot like waiting for Christmas. A couple of times I asked for books for Christmas when I was growing up. So the idea of getting into this new novel of mine reminds me of that. It also reminds me of Michelangelo who when asked about his statues said that what he planned to carve was already in the stone. All he needed to do was remove what wasn't part of the statue. I guess it's not quite like that. But when I start writing, the characters take control of the story and they make it happen. All I've got to do is write down what I see them doing. Sometimes I've been known to get stuck and not see what happens next so I throw a scenario at them to solve. Sometimes it works, sometimes it doesn't but when it does work and the characters make the story their own, magic happens. I can't wait. It's like an addictive rush. It's like reading a story with my fingers. I see the scenes played out in my mind and all I have to do is write what I see. A fascinating road of discovery. Maybe that's why I'm antsy about writing this articles and why I'm stuck because I have the book in my brain and I can't let it out. It's taking too much space in my brain for me to function properly. But I'm so ready to write the book. So ready to see how much different the actual story is from the plotting that I've done for the book. But I must wait. I must wait.

Monday, September 21, 2009

Day -40 and counting

I didn't write anything yesterday. Didn't have anything to say. Today I don't seem to have much to say either. The temperature is hot and muggy. I baked garlic bread and I baked sweet rolls today and I worked on house cleaning. How boring. I've got writing projects to finish but no motivation to get much done. I did write on article for infobarrel though. I'm not getting down on myself for the lack of motivation. Even famous writers had their lulls. My mind is so full of the projects that I'm working on that I don't have a lot of space left to be creative for this blog but since I promised myself that I'd write in here almost daily, I'm writing. See, I'm writing.

Saturday, September 19, 2009

Day -42 and counting

That wonderful sunshine that we had yesterday is hid behind the clouds again. I've worked on writing four articles that I want to finish before November first. I think I'm looking forward to burying myself into the fiction world soon. I'm getting tired of the real world issues that I've been dealing with and writing about.

Friday, September 18, 2009

Day -43 and counting

The month of September is slipping away into October quite quickly. Today is already the 18th and I've still got a lot of projects on my writing and household chores list that I hope to have done by November first. The sun is out today but there is a nip in the morning air. I worked on more research for my book yesterday and I've agreed to write an article for a new magazine that is being put out this fall. Again I don't know if I've bitten off more than I can chew. (Don't you love the cliche?) But I'm doing what I love so I'm okay with it. I really don't have much to write today and I hate boring people with nothing so even though this post is short, I hope it doesn't bore anyone too much.

Thursday, September 17, 2009

Day -44 and counting

The rain appears to have stopped but there is still an overcast to the sky. I'm looking forward to the sun returning so that I can hang clothes out on the line again. I wrote one article today and I was going to put it in eHow but decided to go ahead and write it for infobarrel instead. I haven't seemed to have gotten much done today except read a lot of emails. One does look hopeful. I'm discussing with a magazine the possibility of writing for them.
I haven't worked on a lot of the projects this week that I listed that I want to get done before I begin the NaNoWriMo in 44 days. I know this doesn't sound good, but it is the truth. I just don't feel like doing it. I'm not so interested in doing that right now. Maybe it is because it has been raining and the weather is depressing. Maybe tomorrow the sun will be out. Reminds me of a song from the musical Annie "The Sun will come out tomorrow! Bet your bottom dollar that tomorrow, there'll be sun!"

Wednesday, September 16, 2009

Day -45 and counting

Today is a dark dreary day. The clouds are heavy and rain is pouring down.I haven't gotten much done today, I did listen to a teleseminar that was very helpful but I haven't written anything yet.

I've been thinking about my new novel that I'm starting in 45 days and I have been looking at the title. I've decided that the coward that the book is about isn't the man in the book who thinks he is the coward. Actually the coward could be one of three men. I've got my main characters pretty much identified and have a pretty good idea of who they are. It's the minor characters that I still need to flesh out and help appear real. Maybe fleshed out isn't the right word because no character is fleshed out until they are put into action within the realm of their setting. It's like of like the difference between the character in a script and the actor acting out the scene. The actor brings life to the character and makes them real. They put their own interpretation on the character sort of like happens when a writer takes the character in the character sketch and puts them in their situations. That is when the character is truly fleshed out.

Tuesday, September 15, 2009

Day -46 and counting

What's really strange when you start writing is when your own family falls for your BS and starts asking you advice on various subjects. Today my own sister who was raised in the same home that I was raised asked me how to store onions and how to store carrots for the winter. I have some ideas, but I'm not going to depend totally on my own knowledge of the subject. I'm going to be looking the information up in books, I'm going to be researching on the internet. I'll use information that follows my own philosophy that is basically about doing things as organically as possible. Then I'll write articles on the subject and I'll send my sister the link and she might be really impressed about what I know about storing onions and carrots for the winter. In the meantime, I'll be learning about it myself through my research.

I did some more research for my new book A Coward's Solace yesterday. I'm really enjoying what I'm learning. Remember when I said that Andrew Lewis was an interesting character but I thought I had the wrong person? Well, as it turns out, I really did have the right person and it's really amazing the connections he and his brother Thomas had with George Washington who plays a big role in part of this book. It's like I'm really putting my main characters into a real situation, where the characters really did know one another where they actually had history and the lives are interrelated. The best part of this is that it really could have happened this way. My characters could have been involved with the situations as they are played out. I love it.

I'm starting to get really involved with wanting to begin working on the actual writing of this book but I'm holding back, trying to get these other projects completed before November. The other projects are starting to seem like work. It seems harder now. It's like blackberry picking. I'm in the middle and the work is going show. I don't see the beginning of the projects any more but neither do I see the end. To use another metaphor, I'm in the middle of a long tunnel and I can no longer see where I came from but neither can I see the light at the other end. If I keep walking and putting one step in front of the other, I will see the end. But it sure is dark right here, where I am now.

Monday, September 14, 2009

Day -47 and counting
Above is a link to some pictures of when the Beatles stayed at the Pigman Ranch 45 years ago this month. I can see the Pigman Ranch from my house Which is just across Y highway from the Ranch. John, George and Ringo flew in a small plane owned by Reed Pigman from Walnut Ridge Arkansas to the ranch while the more conservative Paul drove to the ranch. The Beatles stayed at the ranch for 36 hours for a mini vacation between engagements on their first US tour in 1964. In the biography of George Harrison, I, Me, Mine he recalled that they didn't get much rest. During the day they went horseback riding and at night they played cards instead of resting. The Pigman Ranch is currently being made over into a Baptist Christian Retreat.

Sunday, September 13, 2009

Day -48 and counting

We don't have a television in our our home so we have to find other ways to entertain ourselves. Our daughter fancies herself to be an artist and she does a lot of artsy stuff. She started a club called the Sparklie Girls' club which is a girls' club (of course) where the girls work together to clean up the environment and learn about not littering. My daughter has written a cute little book called The New Sparkle which is the magazine for the Sparklie Girls' club. I think it's pretty impressive for an eight year old girl but I wish she'd apply some of her enthusiasm toward cleaning the environment toward her bedroom.

My husband and I share the computer and when one is on the computer, the other is reading or doing housework. (You can guess which one in doing the housework. I'll give you a hint, it isn't my husband.) What's really funny is that he used to make fun of me for reading all the time now he's doing as much if not more than I am.

Our chickens and cats are quite entertaining too. Quite often I'm sitting in my corner office. (My computer desk is in the corner of the livingroom) and I will sit and watch our kittens playingor one of the cats confronting one of the chickens. Yesterday one of the kittens (about 8 weeks old) came nose to nose with a young rooster. It was the rooster that backed away. It's not always the chickens that back away though. Usually at breakfast time the chickens are a ravenous hoard and they think that everything that I put out there is for them and if I didn't stand out there and protect the cats food while the cats ate, the chickens would eat the cats' food as well as their own. I can imagine what it must be like for anyone driving by seeing a woman shooing chickens away from the house with a broom. They probably think I'm crazy. (I may well be, but that isn't the point.) A lot of people may also think that life here in a little house in the middle of a field is boring too but we enjoy it. Especially when the little house is within eyesight of a place where the Beatles once stayed but that is another story for another time.

Saturday, September 12, 2009

Day -49 and counting

Wow just 49 days until the beginning of the 2009 NaNoWriMo! Today my husband, daughter and I went grocery shopping and for the first time I used coupons. I saved eleven dollars! Ten percent of my total bill! Today I also wrote out my basic menu for November. No, I haven't written one out for October yet nor did I make one for September but I really like what I did to enable myself to do it. It's kind of hard to make a menu for an entire month at one sitting unless you've got a strategy. My strategy started with the fact that we eat basically three types of meat around here. chicken, beef and pork (others might eat fish instead of pork but the idea would still be the same). Then I considered the fact that we eat primarily three types of complex carbohydrates--potatoes, rice and pasta. I took the three different kinds of meats and matched them with the three different kinds of complex carbs, I had nine combinations. Next I thought of a meal that had chicken and rice, I wrote it down, I thought of one with chicken and pasta, I wrote it down. I continued down the list until I had at least one meal for each combination. I thought of some meals that don't fit into those catagories, I wrote them down too. For instance, pizza doesn't fit in those categories and neither really does ham and beans and corn bread, nor does chili. those are all meals we enjoy eating in November. By the time I finished adding up all the meals I could make, I came up with 40 different meals that our family would enjoy during the Autumn season and November only has 30 days! It wasn't hard to take that list and figure out 30 suppers for the 30 days of November. And now that I have the list of different meals, I'll be able to buy my groceries ahead and precook some of the components of the meals in October for November so that I won't have to take the time when I'm writing my novel to think about what I'm going to feed my family. I'm so proud of myself. I think I'll pat myself on the back.

Friday, September 11, 2009

Day -50 and counting

There are days when life hits an ebb where everything that seemed okay yesterday seems really irritating today. When you don't feel like doing anything. When you wish you could just stay in bed but that just isn't possible.

Today is one of those days for me. I feel like I have to force myself to simply move. This happens to me on a regular basis. (I should mark my calendar if you know what I mean) so I don't worry about what's going on, I've just simply got to deal with the inconvenience of the next couple of days. I'm not going to worry or force myself to do anything. I'm simply going to do what I know I must. I'm not going to berate myself for my frustrations, it will only make matters worse. Instead, I am accepting what is going on in my life today and know that in a few days I'll have the energy that I need to continue working in the way that I want. I will be patient with who I am today.

Thursday, September 10, 2009

Day -51 and counting

In the Musical The Sound of Music, Maria was not a very good nun so the Reverend Mother at the Abbey sent her to be a governess to the Von Trapp children. One of the things that Marie said when this was beginning to transpire, was that whenever a door closes, a window opens or something to that affect. In my case, I'm having to go through open windows quite a bit lately and it's interesting what I'm finding on the outside of those windows. I'm glad that last week I discovered that taking the easy route often the better idea. Why is it that young boys who would rather be outside in the real world, where they'd rather be, are forced to sit in a class room at the age of 6-8 when they have no desire to be there where all learning is a struggle when if they can just wait a couple more years, the same material will be easier for them?. Then these same boys are diagnosed with ADHD and labeled for the rest of their lives simply because they weren't ready to learn what teachers wanted to teach them? As adults we too are stuck in this same rut. We are told to work on our weaknesses rather than accentuating our strengths. All that does is lead to feeling like a failure and we don't have to be failures. We are not failures. We are just putting our attention on things that aren't working for us. Already, since my resolve to walk around stumbling blocks rather than being tripped up by them, I'm making progress. I'm doing what I really want to do first and amazingly, I'm not procrastinating and I'm even getting things that I wouldn't necessarily want to do done too. I wonder why that is? Maybe it's because when the focus is taken off of the idea that it is not something that I want to do, I actually do want to do it because I know that by doing it I will be benefitted. Or maybe like the little boy, I am just ready to do it.

Wednesday, September 9, 2009

Day -52 and counting

Yesterday after writing my blog, I decided to work on research of the book that I'm writing in November. I finished the outline of the book last week and since it's a historical novel, I've got to be sure that all of my information about the actual event is true. Also I want the real people who actually present at the event to be as genuine as possible. The event is the signing of the first peace treaty between the Native Americans and the newly formed United States government. Finding research material on the internet is so easy. I quickly was able to find the actual document on the internet with the names of all the signers as well as the persons of interest who attended. (of course, my characters were also there, a point of interest in the story but not to the document.). In the possess I found information about the Delaware chief that was there and I thought I'd found information about one of the States signers but as it turned out there was more than one Andrew Lewis in history and the one I found was a different Andrew Lewis. This Andrew Lewis had such an interesting life however that I'm thinking that I might just use him anyway, unless of course the Andrew Lewis at the signing was even more interesting. During the next month or so I'll be learning more about the historical figures who are portrayed in this book. The more I know about the actual historical events and the people who participated, the more depth my story will have when I get started and the easier it will be to write.

Tuesday, September 8, 2009

Day -53 and counting

Just 53 more days until the 2009 NaNoWriMo. It happened again today. eHow wouldn't let me post another article so I went and started an account on This means that I'll be needing to do more work on yet another site to try to get it going. I rewrote the article that I was going to put on eHow so it wouldn't have the same content exactly so I'll still have the article for eHow. I'm beginning to wonder if I'm not planning to bite off more than I can chew with everything that I want to do. My husband and I got several home projects done yesterday. I won't however let too many things get in the way so I'm not able to do the NaNoWriMo like I plan. That's still a go.

Monday, September 7, 2009

Day -54 and counting

Today was Labor Day.
They say that Labor Day is second only to New Years for making and creating goals. I'm not sure why that is. Part of it might be that a lot of people are going back to school. Part of it might have to do with the fact that people are starting to think about fall and the coming major holidays and they are realizing that the year is quickly coming to a close so they decide that they really need to do something quick before another year has gone by. Part of it might just be the changing of the seasons.
Another think they say about Labor Day I learned from a friend. He used to work at a home improvement center and he said that Labor Day and Memorial Day were the busiest days for home improvement. Those two three day weekends are the weekends that people are either starting or finishing home improvement projects. Maybe that's why Labor Day is second only to New Years in Goal setting. Today I kept my husband busy with a honey-do list and his goal is to never let me con him into doing another home improvement project.

Sunday, September 6, 2009

Day -55 and counting

Just 55 more days until the 2009 NaNoWriMo begins. I was thinking this morning about how I chose the name Cygnet and I thought I'd share. It's really quite easy to understand when you know the facts. A cygnet is a young swan. My maiden name was Swanson so you see, it's quite understandable how I chose that name.

I've always enjoyed the story of the ugly duckling. There are actually three possible endings to this story. The first one is the ending when he sees the older beautiful swan early on then sees his reflection in the lake. The second is when he sees another Swan and his owner tells him that he too is a swan. The third one is when the cygnet sees the older Swan, and wants to be like the older swan and then begins to copy the older swan. He then realizes that all along he always was a swan.

What I really like about the third ending is that the younger swan always was a swan. He stopped listening to the crowd (ducks) and started living his life on his own terms. When he emulated what he admired, he was simply developing who he really was. I think that's what I'm doing too. I stopped listening to the crowds and started emulating the person that I want to be. Am I the swan that I want to be? Not yet, I am Cygnet and I'm emulating the swan.

Saturday, September 5, 2009

Day -56 and counting

It rained last night but it did more than rain last night. It was the beginning of the passage from one season to the next. I feel the changes in the weather and there are the changes in the daily patterns as well. My husband and daughter are already back at school and my husband is talking about setting up the wood heating stove and bringing in firewood. This morning I woke up and made blueberry pancakes and bacon and the family sat down to eat breakfast together. The first time we'd done that since the hot weather settled in. This afternoon I'll be baking a German Chocolate cake and making blueberry muffins for tomorrow. I don't think it's quite cool enough to bake bread just yet but soon stoking the fire and baking bread will be part of my routine again.

It's just 56 more days until the 2009NaNoWriMo I am making my way down my list of projects I want to get done before then and I'm happy with my progress. It's amazing how much more easily things move when I have a plan and I work the plan using the paths of least resistance. There's something to be said about taking the easier path, the path that the fewest obstacles are in the path. At least I think it is for the creative side of me anyway. I associate this side of me with my inner child and a child doesn't work, a child plays but in the process the child is always learning, always growing. A child is always growing and learning faster than adults ever could no matter how hard they work at it. Maybe that's why we adults don't learn as fast, because we are trying to make things too hard, too complicated. Maybe we should lighten up and stop trying to fight the changes but accept them and flow with them, learn and grow with them. Maybe then we like children can learn and grow faster than we ever dreamed possible.

Friday, September 4, 2009

Day -57 and counting

Yesterday again I had a very productive day and today I plan to have an equally profitable day. Yesterday I wrote a lot on the projects I plan to have done by the end of October and I've got several things crossed off my house cleaning schedule. Today I've got dreaded monthly refrigerator to clean. Because our refrigerator is old, we have to defrost it at least on a monthly basis. The problem is that it takes all day to thaw out so I've got to start it early in the morning which is what I did this morning. I started by unplugging the refrigerator and taking all the freezer stuff out and putting it into our deep freeze. Then I took the milk out of the refrigerator and put it in the freezer compartment so that the milk would stay cold and actually the milk because it's a liquid that's warmer than the freezer will promote the thawing process. At least that's my theory. I'll then progress throughout the day by doing something else for a while then clean part of the refrigerator then go back to doing something else for a while. This way I can get the refrigerator done as well as other projects that I have pending. It's one of the percs if you can call it that of working from home. I can do housework like that that needs to be done over the course of the day and still keep up with my business.

Thursday, September 3, 2009

Day -58 and counting

I had a great day yesterday. I got a lot of projects on my list completed yes, that' right, completed. I also listened to a recorded teleconference about organizing your time. It's amazing what we find when we align our goals with our own value system and style. Information comes to you like someone is feeding you this information. I was listening to the information saying yes, that's me yes! That's what I needed to know. Yes, I'm going to do that.

One of the things the speaker said that really was great information was that every billionaire that she knows (she says she knows 4 personally) does this every day. They have what is called focused time. Every day they schedule time to work on projects that will accomplish their goals. They take their to do list for the day and prioritize the projects 1, 2, 3 etc and do them in that order. The most important things they allot to special times called focus time. this is time that they refuse to be disturbed. They don't accept conversation, they don't take phone called, nothing but an absolute emergency (Of the the building is on fire variety) will keep them from their focus project. I tried that Tuesday before I knew about doing that and I found that I had gotten a lot done then and then yesterday when I worked on getting things done, I got it all done so quickly that I had plenty of time to listen to that teleconference.

I got information this morning from an editor of the magazine that I send an article to that she couldn't use the article as is, that I needed more current information. She took the time to edit the material before she sent it back to me. This in my opinion though a rejection is a good sign. I'm going to keep trying to work something out but I'm not exactly sure of the direction I need to go with this right now. I'll put this on a backburner to simmer for a while and see what happens. The idea of taking the road of least resistance seems to be working for me right now so I'm going to follow my current path.

Wednesday, September 2, 2009

Day -59 and counting

Day minus 59 and counting. Here it is the second day in September and less than two months until the 2009 NaNoWriMo begins. There are so many directions I can go in right now that it's really hard to focus on getting things done and not trying to start new projects. If there is one lesson I want to learn before the November project starts is that I want to be able to focus and get the job done. I have this habit of loving starting the new project, the excitement of this new idea keeps me focused for a while. Often though I'm focused for just a few days and then I'm ready to start something new. It reminds me of blackberry picking. It seems like I fill up the bottom of the bucket I'm using very quickly but then when berries get up to the middle of the bucket the going goes slow. It feels like the bucket will never get full. I just keep picking and then suddenly I'm near the top and the bucket starts to fill seemingly faster. Any project that takes more than a few minutes is like that. In the beginning it seems we get quick results but then when we get to the middle the project bogs down and it isn't fun for a while but what keeps us going and what must keep us going is that there is a prize at the end of the project. A job well done and a finished product we can be proud of.

Tuesday, September 1, 2009

Day -60 and counting

Yesterday was such a bad day for me that I decided to make today a day of least resistance. For me a day of least resistance is a day that if I come against something that leads to difficulties I stopped and decided to do something else. This worked well for me because I got a lot more than I thought I would done. I actually finished projects and started a couple that I had on my list of things to do. I also decided to use a timer to help me focus on the project I was working on. I used the timer for a number of my household chores. I set my timer for fifteen minutes and them focused on that one thing until I was done or until the timer went off. I got caught up with a lot of the chores I didn't do yesterday. I also used a timer in some of my writing. I timed myself for five minutes of writing time and found that I was writing 184 words in five minutes. That's about 35 words a minute which doesn't sound like much but I was creating while I was typing. The second and third times I timed myself I didn't do as well but I think whenever I'm going to try to write new material I'm going to try to use this technique. I think it will probably help me in November when I'm writing my NaNoWriMo.