Monday, September 2, 2013

Returned, Refreshed, and Setting Some Goals

Hi, all! I'm back from Oregon, where I had a lovely time, though I must say that I am officially too old, broken, and sleepy to sit in a car for 21 hours straight. I routinely made that drive years ago, but I'm thinking this was my last straight-through shot.

I got to act like a twenty-something, enjoy some time with my mom and my two youngest siblings, who were 4 and 5 1/2 when I moved out to get married, see friends and family I often go years without seeing, sight-see and take tons of photos (over 800 by the time I got home--yes, I'm a photo slut). We extended our time at the beach and cut time out from later in the trip to do so. I got a short story written, got a few ideas for others, and best of all, I got to forget my troubles for a little while, pretend they didn't exist. It was nice.

Though I did miss my hubby and my babies. And my bed. And my laptop. And you guys, of course!

Now I'm back, refreshed (after a couple days recovering from the drive), and eager to jump back into my writing. Unfortunately, I have a whole lotta' work to catch up on, seeing as how I was gone for a week after just having come off five weeks of school and investing all of my attention into that class. I came back to find my test date waiting for me. It's not until October. Ugh. I'm a fan of just getting things over with, but hey, now I've got over a month to study (and obsess, and worry, and forget details, and, and, and...)

Back to that eagerness to get back to writing. Did you guys see the results of the Hugo Awards last night? I'll be honest. I had forgotten they were going on, but then an acquaintance posted a picture of his shiny new Hugo Award, so I went to check it out. Reading through that list of names, all the categories, I was inspired. I've been letting work, volunteer work at that, take the place of my writing time. I can't let that happen anymore. Yes, I'll still do my jobs, and I'll do them well, but I will also set aside time to write. My kids started school, and I can now create a schedule for myself.

So here's a little non-New Year's goal setting: I will create a schedule that provides for time to write and time to exercise. I've gotten out of shape while battling depression and doing an awful lot of sitting at my computer, sitting in meetings, sitting in the car, sitting, sitting, sitting. Work the body, work the mind. Once a week I will go somewhere other than home to write. I will make time to go on hikes when I can, because I enjoy them, and because I always find inspiration while out hiking and/or walking. I will finish Wendigo Nights. I will submit short stories for publication. I will take my writing seriously.

What about you? How are you feeling? Where's your inspiration level right now? Have you looked at your goals for the year, examined them, adjusted them for your current needs? What's looming over your head? Work deadlines, writing deadlines, test deadlines? Are you making time for yourself? For your writing? 

May you find your Muse.


  1. I'm glad you got a much needed break and time to renew! It's so hard to balance it all. Keep taking time for you.

  2. Glad to hear you had such a good time!

    I've set some goals for September - both writing-related and personal. It's never too late to start - who needs New Year's, right? Good luck with yours!

  3. My health (or lack thereof I should say) left me sedentary all summer. So frustrating. Gained weight, lost self-esteem, my depression increased. Sigh. I need to set goals and follow through and all that, but it seems overwhelming right now. Thanks for the gentle nudge, though. Best of luck with yours!
    Tina @ Life is Good

  4. Welcome back. I always feel optimistic in the beginning of the summer (those long days) I think I can get tons of things done. By September reality sinks in and I see what's left.

    I'm working on a Bk 2 for a scifi story and an alternate history novel. They've been on the back burner for a while.

    Writing is the most important priority right now for me. Good luck with getting back into your schedule, and stick with both those excellent goals (writing and fitness).

  5. I saw that Scalzi won something, but I haven't checked what.

    Welcome back.

  6. Hi, Shannon. Skimmed your blog only today. Got the grandson. Signed up to follow you by way of email. Can read at the salon between heads of hair.

    Hugs and chocolate,

  7. Welcome back, Shannon! I know I'm too old to do a drive like that now. Didn't notice the Hugos.

  8. Welcome back. I don't think I've ever been young enough to do a drive like that. Even in college, four hours was my limit.

    I'm feeling pretty hopeful as I finish this, what I hope to be last, round of edits.

  9. Its nice to see you back! I need to set more goals for myself to write, but I never keep my goals. I think I need to come up with some way to make give me something to look forward to, besides the fact that I would be getting things done.

  10. Sounds like a wonderful break, and yeah, I couldn't do that much driving either. Age does have a way of taking the fun out of things. Love your goals, always set goals, my to do lists are vital - probably a bit anal, but hey, I love checking off the items, what can I say.

  11. Man, I'd love a nice break like that; beach and friends/fam and just general chillaxing...sighs.

    Good for you, with your goal setting! This striving for balance between writing and everything else conversation's been running through the blogosphere for months, it seems. I've taken the step of buying a planner, since I seem to manage some productivity when I write down what I want to accomplish. The next step is sitting down with that sucker to determine a stick-to-able schedule for myself. Baby steps, yo. :-)

  12. The Loerzels, thank you, I will try! I hope you do the same.

    Madeline, I hope you meet and exceed your goals!

    Tina, do only what you can comfortably do. Pushing yourself too much will only worsen it, I'm sure. Hugs out to you, my friend.

    D.G., good luck to you with your writing! I hope life lets you stick to it. I feel that way at the beginning of fall, thinking kids back to school means I'll have ALL this writing time, and then reality sets in and I have five billion things I have to do that I was putting off.

    Andrew, thanks! I don't remember what he won.

    Shelly, I hope all is well with the little guy.

    Alex, oh yes, it did my mother and I in. My sister, on the other hand, went to work that night and just jumped right in, and I'm not sure about my brother. Probably just fine.

    Jenn, good luck with those final edits!

    Rachel, true, an outside reward is often a good idea. When I was submitting short stories (which I need to get back to) I set myself a reward and will fulfill it after I take my state boards! A friend of mine picks herself a fun new shirt as her goal so she has a visual on the reward. Good luck to you!

    Yolanda, I love that feeling of checking items off, as well. Feels good to have visual proof that you accomplished something.

    Mina, good luck with the planner; I hope it helps! I need to carry around a planner with me wherever I go, but I'm terrible about updating it.