This weekend, I did the unthinkable. I took a day off. Not at my paying job, but at writing. I was up for a full 23 hours, since I actually had an opening shift at the day job, which meant no time for my usual morning writing routine. The boyfriend and I carpooled, and my shift ended earlier than his, so I started at seven in the morning and didn’t get out of that place until six that evening. Then we went to Blaze Pizza, our go-to place for pizza celebration when I get an acceptance (this one for my recent Bards and Sages Quarterly news, and by the time we were done with that, we had about an hour or two to get ready to go out to a Halloween party at a friend-of-a-friend’s place. We were vampires (I looked a little cheap, but the boyfriend was pretty much Bela Lugosi reincarnated, it was creepy cool), and we only planned on staying for a little bit, but we didn’t get home until three in the morning. I had woke up at 4;30 that day to get ready for my shift. So, yeah, it was a long ass day with absolutely no time for writing.
And the world didn’t end. Imagine that.
I’m such a workaholic that it’s difficult for me to sometimes let days like Saturday happen. I feel guilty, I feel lazy, but, you know what? It’s all in my head. I’m still working hard and getting stuff done, and it’s important to sometimes just have a day where your attentions are focused on other things. Still, I was thankful to get back to my routine this morning, since it was still a little off-kilter from me sleeping in to recover yesterday. Unfortunately, there won’t be any Halloween shenanigans for me tonight, as I’m working again, but a good chunk of us have decided to dress up as one of our store leaders, so that should be interesting.
As far as what I’ve been working on and what I’m going to be working on?
Reading: I finished up Terry Pratchett’s Witches Abroad, which is Discworld and therefor awesome. I’ve read it before, and I highly recommend it to anyone who is interested in the retelling of fairy tales. Pratchett’s witches bring something truly unique on that scale, and brought The Princess and the Frog to a New Orleans setting long before Disney did it (by nearly 20 years!). This week, I’ll probably finished Galápagos.
Meanwhile, I’ve started reading through my contributor’s copy of Potters Field 6, which includes my short story “Sleepwalker.” I’m really excited to finally read what else is in the book, and I’ll definitely be letting you know what I think.
Writing: I finished two stories last week, which was exciting because I haven’t finished many lately. One is a piece I started a while ago that I was worried would never finish, and the other was a submission for The First Line. This week, I started up a cute little tale about a girl and her elephant (who happens to actually belong to a bloodthirsty warmonger), and tomorrow I’ll be forging ahead on my NaNoWriMo piece. I have decided to use the next…hahaha….26 years of NaNo to start my lipogram series. That’s 26 books, each written without using a certain letter of the alphabet, all of them somehow connected. I’m going for a magical-realism feel with these stories, very Twin Peaks, Terry Gilliam, Neil Gaiman, with a slice of The Twilight Zone. I haven’t worked out too much of a plot for this one yet (I’ll be trying to do some outlining tonight), but I have decided resolutely that it’s going to revolve around “Jenny with the red curls.” And the letter omitted will be A, of course, because I have to do these in order.
Yeah, it’s a little crazy, probably, to constrain my writing more when I’m already doing a project that is already a difficult thing to do, but I like challenges. I’m the type of person who makes up a lot of arbitrary rules for herself, and that actually drives me to accomplish something. It makes it a game of sorts. By challenging myself to try to write 50,000 words of a book without using the letter “A”, I’m creating an environment where I’ll actually manage to succeed, or I’ll just crash and burn. There’s no middle ground with these things for me.
Only three rejections this week, bringing my total up to 44, and I’m 100% sure I’ll reach fifty by the end of the year. Halfway to the 100 goal, even though I started in August, meaning I pulled off half a year’s worth of rejections in a mere two/three months. It’s going to be really interesting next year when I get to start from January and see just how many I can collect. Still no new acceptances since last time, but I should be hearing back on an anthology any day now. Fingers crossed! I really like this story in question, so I’m hoping they did, too.
‘Rithmatic: Besides the Halloween fun, there really isn’t a whole lot going on otherwise. I’ve been stressing out about money a bit lately, but I think that’s just because I’ll be doing payout for Volume III soon, and that’s always a nice little dig in the resources.
Speaking of which, today is the LAST DAY for World Unknown Review submissions! Get me those last minute manuscripts! Otherwise, you’ll have to wait until next year for Volume VI!
That’s all for now. I’ve got an earlier shift today, so I better wrap this up so I can get all my other stuff done!
Who else is participating in NaNo this year? What are you writing about? Anyone else out there ever try to tackle a lipogram?
I can’t remember the last time I took a day off from writing. I really need to, all work and no fun make C.S. a dull girl T_T
Errr. yes. Taking a day off every once in a while is important. My boyfriend’s always giving me crap for being a workaholic, but I can’t help it. The fact that I was able to take a day off without feeling guilty about it is a huge improvement! And I’m always so eager to get back on the horse again, tool.
Oh yes, I can totally relate
I try to take weekends off from writing, as long as I haven’t fallen behind on my goals for the week. Otherwise I’ll use it to catch up. Then, by Monday, I’m usually refreshed and eager to get back to it. Unless we’ve had an especially busy weekend(which is another reason I tend to take off from writing then, it’s when we do a lot of running around).
I’m participating in NaNo again(I haven’t missed one since I started in ’10). I’m being a rebel, though, and working on multiple projects. All but one were already in progress. I’m writing a minimum of 500 words a day on each of them. If I do this every weekday, I’ll end up with at least 55,000 words at the end of the month. I can’t seem to focus on only one thing at a time, so this tends to work best for me.
That’s the tricky part with working shift work: there’s no such things as weekend in retail! My days off are almost always different and it’s rare to get two days off in a row. But I have worked it out that I only work nights, so I still have my mornings for writing, especially since those are my best writing hours. Since the other job is so random, the writing bit’s got to be the consistent anchor.
I, too, have trouble focusing on one thing at a time, but I’m hoping to get good enough this month to work on the NaNo novel first, reach the goal, and then still tackle something else. Probably a bit too ambitious, as are all my NaNo goals, but it’s worth a try, I guess?
Good luck with yours, Fallon! I know you’re going to get out some really good stuff!
I did the same! And it wasn’t as great as I expected lol!
Right? I’m always left with, “Man, I can’t believe I wasted a perfectly good day off!”