Wednesday, July 29, 2009

Good Quote

I like this quote because it emphasizes the importance of setting goals, not just in reaching them. I'm going to try to remember these words next time I'm hard on myself for not getting everything done that I want to...

"A goal is not always meant to be reached, it often serves simply as something to aim at." Bruce Lee

Who knew Bruce Lee was so deep? ;) Best Blogger Tips

Tuesday, July 21, 2009

Tri training and writing

So all this swimming, biking, running, and more swimming has knocked me out of any sort of writing habit. As my triathlon gets very close, I am feeling very frustrated about the fact that I have managed to fit into my weeks an absurd amount of workouts, but I cannot fit regular writing into my life with anywhere near as much intensity. I've thought about why and come up with a few theories:

1-Working out shows fairly immediate results. Within a few weeks, you lose weight, see more muscle, run faster, etc. Writing? Even with the most consistent writing practice, results (in terms of noticeable improvement or getting published) are few and far between.

2-There's much more social support for working out. I have lots of friends who will accompany me to the gym or go out for a run with me. Writing is so solitary--which I love, but which also means there's no peer pressure egging me on, and I can't kill two birds with one stone by writing while I chat with a friend I've been meaning to catch up with.

3- Similarly, there are many more people in my life who will pat me on the (sweaty) back after a workout than there are who will cheer me on for finishing a page of writing.

4-Did I mention the immediacy of results?

All that said, I am *pretty* sure that if I committed more to writing, I would see more results. So, even without the guarantee I wish I could garner from the writing fairy, I am going to commit to a writing routine in August. I'm still working out the kinks of the program, but I'm sure it will be just as grueling--and hopefully satisfying--as the tri training has been. Best Blogger Tips

Wednesday, July 15, 2009

Good Quote

"It is worth mentioning, for future reference, that the creative power which bubbles so pleasantly in beginning a new book quiets down after a time, and one goes on more steadily. Doubts creep in. Then one becomes resigned. Determination not to give in, and the sense of an impending shape keep one at it more than anything."

~Virginia Woolf

Words I hope to remember as I work on revising the first few chapters of my novel and then pushing onward! Best Blogger Tips

Tuesday, July 14, 2009

Revising on a Boston-bound Greyhound

Eek--it's been a while since I've posted. This summer feels very busy--actually, it's just a tad busier than I'd like, and I'm thinking that August will be the perfect pace. I'll be done with my triathlon training then, and hopefully relaxing will fill in the void that training has left. Plus, in August I get to spend a week at the Canada lake house, writing and hanging out with two of my favorite people in the world. Oh, how I am looking forward to that!

I have been getting a bit of writing done (not as much as I'd like--never as much as I'd like...). I printed out the two stories I've been sending around, and that have been getting rejected, and read them on the bus back from New York this weekend. Having not read them for a while, I came at them with the freshest eyes I have since writing them. I discovered:

1. The longer story (Cartes Postales) had a few typos! So embarrassing! I think what happened was the last time I edited the story, I didn't have the stomach to reread it purely for typos. Big mistake--and one I will never make again!

2. I found a solution to a problem that was plaguing Cartes--the transition from where the main character goes from wishing her husband were still alive to actually believing he is. Again, having some distance allowed me to find a simple solution. Once I make these small changes--AND PROOFREAD THE STORY--I'll send it out again.

3. The shorter story, Because We Can (a title that I might change), was cleaner--thank God! I still made a few small edits, though, and had a feeling that the ending wasn't quite working. But I couldn't figure out why. Then I read Lorrie Moore's recent story in the New Yorker and I had an idea-- the story needs some retrospection on the part of the main character. She needs to look back to be able years later to understand what the incidents of the story meant to her.

I journaled about this change this morning on my train ride to work, and plan on implementing it as soon as I can get some time in front of the ole computer. Then I'll PROOFREAD IT and start sending it out again. Best Blogger Tips