Sunday, January 29, 2012

Welcome, Chair!

My desk chair is ridiculously uncomfortable. I mean, if I'm only sitting in it for a little while then fine, it's not SO bad, but considering that I'm sitting in it for like 8 hours a day, it's pretty bad. The problem is that the cushioning is so worn that I'm literally sitting on a metal bar. And THAT, my friends, is not comfortable. I've been dealing with it, but it's been like this (this=hard metal bar under my butt) for like a year, and I only bought it a year and a half ago! Very. Annoying.

Last week I tried sitting on one of those big exercise balls instead of my uncomfortable chair. It was...interesting. There was nothing to lean back on, obviously, so I got to strengthen my 'core' by sitting upright the whole time. I also bounced, which was fun. But the thing is that I usually sit with my legs pulled up onto the chair. Like right now, my knees are bent and my feet are on the chair and this is my Optimal Comfort position. Sometimes I sit cross-legged, but that's only if I've been in the Optimal Comfort position for too long and it stops feeling Optimally Comfortable. But with the exercise ball? That was NOT POSSIBLE. I did, however, master the cross-legged position, but the only problem with that was every so often I would lose balance and start to roll backward, and then I'd have to cling onto the desk until I re-situated myself. It was a nice change of pace, but not something I would want to do everyday.

But ever since three hours ago...I have a new desk chair! And it is AWESOME! Like seriously, awesome. I mean, any new chair probably would have been great, but THIS new chair? It's like sitting on a cloud! It's so fluffy yet also supportive! Even the arm rests have padding! I'll be able to sit for longer! And I'll be comfortable the whole time! I'll be a word-producing machine! Really, I think it's going to help me work better. I have high hopes for this chair. And if the padding wears within months and I'm again sitting on a metal bar...I WILL PROBABLY FLIP THE HECK OUT I'll probably buy the same chair again anyway. Because THAT is how much I love it.

So I'd like to dedicate this blog post to my new chair. Welcome, chair. I hope you enjoy your time as my chair. I hope you do some chair-exercises at night while I sleep to keep yourself buff and fluffy. If you do good, I promise not to throw you out like I did with the chair-that-must-not-be-named. If you need anything, I'll be here 8 hours a day, so just let me know. Alright, chair, I'll see you tomorrow morning, so be ready for a full day's work! LOVE YOU!!


Monday, January 23, 2012

Catching Up

Last week I got behind on my word count. WAY behind. It was one of those, "I'll catch up tomorrow" kind of weeks, until it was Friday and I realized "tomorrow" already came and went four times. Ah yes, the joys of procrastination. I tried to catch up over the weekend but I'm still 2000 words behind. That's not too bad, as long as I'm on top of it this week. WHICH I WILL BE.

That's right. I'm posting it here and now for all to see. This week, I am going to write 5,750 words. It WILL get done. If not, there will be serious consequences. Hmm, consequences, consequences...NO! Consequences aren't even an option, because it's getting done. See? All about the mindset :)

But I will have a reward for reaching my goal: I'm going to visit the place that inspired New Novel this weekend. I'm SUPER excited!! It's in Manhattan, and I've only been there once, and that one time I was so inspired by the place that I whipped out my notebook and started taking notes. It'll be fun to go back now that I have a whole story in my head. And no, I'm not going to reveal what it is. I know, I'm so lame! But I do write better when I'm being all secretive and I feel like I'm "alone" with the story.

So really, I can't NOT reach my goal, because I already have a reward planned, and that would just be cheating.

Do you guys set word count goals? What are your weekly or monthly goals? How do you stay on track and beat procrastination?

Tuesday, January 17, 2012

In Which I Discuss 'The Climb'

So, it's 1:42am on January 17th. I guess this means I'm officially 24.


Oh. Mah. Gah.

Okay, I guess it's not that old. It's just...I can't say I'm in my "early" twenties anymore. This is really approaching mid-twenties status. And you know what comes after that? Late twenties. And then? No more twenties. And there are THINGS I want to do before I run out of twenties, you know? I have vision for the future.

I mean, you can make things happen at any age, of course, but sometimes I see published authors who are about my age, or authors with X number of published books already and I think, "Why didn't I start to take writing seriously when I was younger?" And I get kind of jealous. I'm jealous because THEY have accomplished or will accomplish something at such and such age, and I'm still at this stage of the process and it's going to take forever and they're so much more talented and I'm going to be such and such age before anything happens and! and! and!

And really, it doesn't matter.

I'm tired of being jealous. I'm tired of comparing my non-existent writing career with established authors or authors with book deals or agented authors. I might have said this before, but the feeling that I get where everyone is on this happy writer's train and I'm standing in a field watching it go by? Doesn't matter. Because there's a whole schedule of trains. I might not be on the same train as some writers, but I'll catch another one later. Every author has started where I am right now, and right now I'm enjoying the view.

Well, I'm trying to enjoy the view. Really, I am. But it's something I have to constantly remind myself to do. And I have to say, the community of writers online is truly helping with this. I don't feel so alone in the process, and that makes all the difference. So thanks, writer friends, for being so awesome. I'm excited for what I'll do this year writing-wise, and I'm excited for you guys, too. I want to spend this year not thinking about all that I haven't accomplished but all that I've learned so far, and using it to push myself forward.

You know that song "The Climb" by Miley Cyrus (it's from Hannah Montana the movie which, I have to admit, I loved!)? Well, I know it's so cheesy, but it seriously reminds me of this whole writing thing. If you've never heard the song, look it up, or at least look up the lyrics. Again, you'll probably think it's cheesy but REALLY, it's so good! Okay fine, now I have to post a snippet of the lyrics. Here's the chorus:

There's always gonna be another mountain
I'm always gonna wanna make it move
Always gonna be an uphill battle
Sometimes I'm gonna have to lose
Ain't about how fast I get there
Ain't about what's waiting on the other side
It's the climb



If you don't mind me, I'm going to read a bit and then go to bed, and when I wake up tomorrow for my first full day of being a 24-year-old, I will make myself some coffee and write :)

Thursday, January 12, 2012

Thursday Things

Happy Thursday! Although today feels like Friday to me. Don't you hate when that happens? But it's all good, because I'm making cookies later. *Grin*

Alright, here are some THINGS:

1. I have 5,000 words written in New Novel so far. It's a scary, exciting place to be. Scary, because now I remember how hard it is to start a book, and because I want so much to get it right. Exciting, because I love this story! I'm also reminded of how I  have no method of writing a book. Really, it's just kind of a jumble of words and scenes which may or may not be in order, sometimes involving index cards but sometimes not, sometimes involving scribbled notes in the margins of notebooks but sometimes not. Sometimes it's accompanied by tea or coffee or wine. Sometimes it's morning, sometimes it's past midnight. And it's glorious! And hard. But mostly glorious!

2. I am eating a banana right now. It is ripe, and good, but I've come to realize that I prefer bananas when they are still slightly green. Weird?

3. Last night I finished reading Laini Taylor's Daughter of Smoke and Bone. Basically, it was disturbingly good. If you haven't read it yet I highly recommend it, because man, can Laini tell a story!

4. The Husband and I are thinking of buying an elliptical. If this happens, it will be a good thing, because my physical exercise is quite limited, except for crunches and such. But I'm talking cardio, here. I sit down a lot. I sit in front of a computer for work all day, and then I sit in front of a computer after work to write. If I'm not in front of a computer, I'm probably sitting down to read or watch TV. That's...a lot of freakin' sitting. Something must stop this madness!

5. THIS!: 

Monday, January 9, 2012

Writing Out of Order

This New Novel I'm working on is still a little fuzzy. I know the major plot points and characters, I know specific scenes that I want to write, and I know the mood and tone I want to portray. But, between all that, I don't know. I don't exactly have an "outline" for this novel, but I do try to brainstorm before writing so I have at least some idea of what's going to happen.

The first novel I wrote, the one that's taking a seat while I work on this novel, was written from beginning to end in that order. I didn't jump around and write later scenes first and earlier scenes last. I just wrote the whole thing in order until it was done. I wrote even when I had no clue what was happening next. I made myself an outline when I got tired of not knowing, and then stuck to the outline for the most part. The end result was messy, but it was a complete rough draft, at least.

Writing this New Novel is different for a lot of reasons, but one of them is that I'm writing it out of order. I wrote the first chapter, and then I started the second chapter and got stuck. I had an idea for how I wanted the chapter to go, but I wasn't sure if that was really how I would want it in the end. The writing was slow. The words would not come. So, instead of forcing myself to write that chapter, I skipped ahead to a chapter/scene I knew needed to be in there and the words flew from my fingers. Funny how that happens, isn't it?

After that experience, I'm convinced that a book does not need to be written in order. I'm not sure why I thought I had to write in order with my first novel, but I am officially converted to out-of-order writing, at least for this book. I'm sure it will be a pain to string it all together in order when I'm done, but the point is that I will have scenes I'm confident in, and not scenes I'm forcing myself to write. I plan on writing the scenes that speak to me first, the scenes that I already have in mind, and the scenes that I know will be important for the book. I will have a skeleton of scenes, but then I can fill in the rest with a better idea of where things are going.

This is weird and new for me, but I'm very excited about it. What about you guys? Do you usually write in order, or do you ever skip ahead and write later scenes first?

Tuesday, January 3, 2012


Helloooo! So, first blog post of the new year. Yay. Today, I would like to talk about an XTREME XPERIENCE I had. The last XPERIENCE, in fact, of 2011.


First, let me just say that I am not an athletic type. As far as exercise goes, I enjoy workout videos, pilates, and the elliptical. But sports? That's not really my "thing". My husband, however, played sports his whole life. He's all for XTREME XPERIENCES of the Sports variety (not the roller coaster variety. He will not get on a roller coaster). So when his family mentioned that they were going to stay at a ski resort for a few days, he was like, "LET'S BUY REALLY NICE SNOWBOARDING EQUIPMENT SO IT CAN BE OUR NEW XTREME HOBBY." (paraphrasing) And I said, "HECK, YES!"

So that's what we did. We BOUGHT snowboarding pants, jackets, boots, helmets, goggles, snowboards and bindings. Why would we rent this stuff when it's obviously going to be our new XTREME hobby?? So we were all set for the XTREME XPERIENCE. But this ski resort trip? Hasn't happened yet. It's happening this weekend. But we bought all this stuff last Wednesday in preparation and then decided to go snowboarding last Friday, like a pre-XTREME XPERIENCE XPERIENCE. You know? So my husband, my sister in law, my brother and I all hopped in the car and went to the ski resort to snowboard last Friday.

I was pretty nervous, but also excited because I had all this cool new equipment that made me look seriously XTREME. I imagined myself acing it on the first try, as did my husband. We were going to be awesome. My husband's new favorite word is 'shred' as in, shred some snow with our mad snowboarding skillz.

We got to the bunny hill. Everyone has to start at the bunny hill, even us XTREME peeps, just to get the hang of it before we do some serious shredding. Surrounded by small children and parents teaching these young ones how to shred, we fastened our front binding and hobbled our way to the top of the hill. Please note, trying to move with one foot strapped into a snowboard at a perpendicular angle to your free foot is XTREMELY CHALLENGING. But it was all good. We were fine.

Just to give you a visual, to the right of the bunny hill was a ski lift, to the left was a black tube thing which separated people going down the bunny hill from people going UP the bunny hill on some sort of moving escalator type thing. In my mind, the black divider was something to bump into to make myself stop if all else failed.

Anyway, it was time to go down the hill. I strapped my other foot into the binding and WHOAAAAAMYYYYGOSHHH. Snow is SLIPPERY, people! Like...really slippery. Especially while on a snowboard. I was pleased to see my companions having equal difficulty with the slipperyness of the snow. We were noobs together, and that made everything okay. So, okay, time to go down the hill. Little kids were going down the bunny hill no problem, so clearly this would be easy. I jumped/slid/waved my arms forward so I was at the edge, and was go time.

I am smiling at my speed, because speed must mean skill.
I look back to see my husband has already fallen. I am nearing the end of the bunny hill with TOO MUCH speed, and now I'm scared because I don't know how to STOP.
ME: AAAAAAAHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHH!!!!! (High-pitched girly scream)

*Um...that was me crashing into the black divider. HARD. Which made an XTREMELY loud noise.

ME: Yup. I'm fine. Thanks.

I got up and basically fell down the rest of the bunny hill. This happened three more times, except instead of crashing into the black divider I fell hard on my tailbone. Yes, all three times. After that I could no longer snowboard because I was in XTREME PAIN.

SO. That was my last XTREME XPERIENCE of 2011. My bruised tailbone is still healing. And we are going again this weekend.

I am scared.

But now I am equipped! With what, you ask? With HIP PADS. I vainly did not buy these when we bought the rest of our equipment because I didn't want my hips/butt looking ridiculously large, but now I DON'T CARE! I shall go to any lengths to prevent more XTREME PAIN. So clearly, I am serious about the sport. Serious enough to put my vanity aside, embrace the hip/butt padding, and ready to be an XTREME SNOWBOARDER ONCE AND FOR ALL!

Of course, I probably won't leave the bunny hill. But still.