Time is Personal
I’m currently reading a mainstream NYTimes best seller. It is very enjoyable and the author is or has recently been on a tour to promote her two books and working on her third. I can’t really remember how I happened to catch the title, really, and when I went on Amazon, it was a bit costly so I didn’t buy it. Then I remembered that through my library I am able to “borrow” books electronically. I searched for the title and reserved it for at least two months. When the library informed me last week that the title was available, I promptly downloaded it into my app and began reading. I am finding it entertaining but I do notice that I am reading with an editor’s eye, rather than just enjoying the book for what it offers. It is a terrible thing.
My ambition is to write a mainstream novel this year. Whether or not it gets published is not really important to me. Getting it down on paper (well, in my case in Scrivener!) is what I really want to do. I spent the month of November 2018 participating in NaNoWriMo and got about 90 pages done, or more or less 30%. I did not “win” because I did not complete 50,000 words in that month, but I did write almost every single day. I have not written very much on the novel since December 1st. I find it hard to believe how the days and weeks just fly by.
Someone told me recently that “time” was personal…whatever that meant. Today I kind of got his message: I spend at least one hour every day on personal grooming. I try to make it go faster but by the time I shower, apply body lotion everywhere, comb and style my long, curly hair, find appropriate clothing that is clean, pressed and fits for the day, and then put on my makeup, an hour has gone by. Then I try to spend at least 40 minutes practicing my guitar, another 20 minutes watering or tending to my plants…right there are two hours that my friends who have short hair and wear t-shirts and jeans and no makeup, have no musical hobby or plants save…so I guess he is right.
My weight loss journey continues. I am pleased to say that I have been following the Whole-30 pretty closely although I have given myself a couple of “cheat” days and then begin anew. I am in a different space, at +60 it is no longer appropriate to be wondering if anyone is going to scold me for being overweight! I feel really good though and have lots of energy despite not eating any bread or added sugar. My problem has and will always be portion control! Each meal is an opportunity to practice, that part is fun, watching myself as if I were a stranger!
bing.com public domain image
About a week ago, I noticed a short story writing contest was being held by one of
the local newspapers just in time for Halloween. Although they offered a very modest
monetary prize, that was not my motivator when I sat before my computer and began
quickly writing the maximum 1200 words before the midnight deadline. I wasn’t even
sure what I would write about, the topics were pretty broad and the rules rather loose.
I amazed myself by accomplishing more in that few hours than I have had the discipline
to do each day to get a bit further on my “novel”. This is NANOWRIMO and many of us
are in someway participating. I hope I can do a little bit more this year, I belong to a
tiny writers group though we have not been able to meet for a while and we don’t write
during any of our meetings anyway so it’s not like I’m going to advance there!
Anyway, I did not win the modest monetary prize but it was nice to see my name in
print and know that when the pressure is on, I actually can sit and write. My story was
not terrific, too many characteristics mirrored my life closely and I was somewhat worried
that my friends would see themselves reflected but from an editor’s point of view, it was
a good job.
As crazy as my life has been the last couple of years, I am not sure how sane it was
to think I could do the Nanowrimo this year…but there you have it, I actually did begin
something. Now though, life is getting in the way more than usual and I am at a loss as to
where and how to restart a story I began two years ago. I am sure that back then I knew
exactly where I was headed, now I am not so sure.
Lots of people write good stories, compelling ones that keep us turning page after page.
I don’t really know what made me think I had a cute story to tell, I can’t seem to write
anything at all today.
It is Monday. I did have a busy weekend. I am not at a location where it is easy to
get inspired and I never really considered what a blessing my usual location has been
for gathering material together and putting words on paper. Where I am now is a busy
city where there is lots of traffic and noise of all kinds. Day and night seem to have
no real segregation, people are doing things at all hours.
What music inspires me to write? At the moment, I cannot even decide if reggae, salsa,
classical or jazz is my muse. I guess it’s another delay tactic of my not so sub-conscious!
I read a while ago that one of my favorite authors, Wayne Dyer, wrote his books longhand!
This is a challenge that I engage in only when I am somewhere that I cannot take my laptop
to. Otherwise, I do all my writing on my computer and edit there also.
Some years ago, I tried to write my 50,000 words on a November Nanowrimo! I didn’t get very
far before something (called life!) interrupted me and I discarded the idea. I tried half-
heartedly the following year but came away equally unsuccessful. I am trying again this year,
perhaps as the old saying goes, the third time’s the charm! Let me be hopeful.
Perhaps writing (not even sure the subject and tomorrow, November 1st looms…) will
take my mind and focus away from the ever present thoughts of weight, food and life.
To any who are considering sitting in a chair every day and writing, I know what it’s all about.
As my mother used to say, everyone’s life is worth a novel, let’s write ours this month.