Some Rather Than None

In a surprising turn of events, I wrote words.

No, really, I did. My spreadsheet even says so. I promise.

By the time this posts, I’ll be working towards my overall monthly goal of finishing with at least 40K under my belt, which will be relatively easy considering I’m closer to 36K at this point than not. This is a non NaNo month, in which I spread myself out over a variety of projects, so I am quite pleased with my work, even if my drive fizzled out towards the end due to life and its inconsistencies, coupled with my inability to focus after these unexpected events transpired. Still, I wrote words that mattered and which helped me grow. That is progress I can get behind.

Now that May is all but over, as I look forward to next month, believe it or not, I am aiming for the whole 50K, if not more. With a new spreadsheet in tow, I will be tracking my progress once again, because it seemed that method helped me to best stay on track, even if I did deviate for a bit. In preparation for the July NaNo, and each one after, I want to keep the work load steady, so that writing that much becomes as easy as breathing. Otherwise, finishing all that I want to may never happen.

On a semi related note, I actually read 5 books this month, as well as one graphic novel. April was the worst reading month I’ve had in years, so to read that much after the previous month, was a breath of relief. In terms of overall enjoyment – I loved each book that I chose. Two thirds of them were new releases, with the other two being books I’ve had on my TBR pile for a while. Not a single one disappointed, thankfully.

While I do not plan to set a definitive TBR for next month, I will say that I’d like to read at least 5 queer books, if not more. Massive monthly TBR piles, like I tried to set for each month at the beginning of the year, will not do it for me. At least, not while I’m juggling all that I am. Even so, I’m sure I will enjoy the next month, and whatever reads it brings.

So that’s my May in a nutshell, with writing and reading – two actions which are intrinsically linked. If you do either, do you have any goals for next month? Are you setting a definitive TBR for Pride Month, or winging it?

Either way, I hope that if you’re reading this, that you’re having a great day!

T.J.

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Almost 21K the 1st Week of May

My latest experiment with writing productivity has proven to be a success, as the title of this post indicates. I’ve been a bit absent again from this blog again, and as of now I still cannot say it won’t continue to happen, but it’s safe to say that I have still been writing.

In the first 7 days of May I wrote nearly 21, 000 words. That’s an astonishing amount, considering in April I wrote about that much for the whole month. I can only credit that though to the fact that tracking my writing with spreadsheets has forced me to acknowledge when and where my consistency is dipping.

Consistency, as I tell myself and often others frequently, is key. While I say that, I am the first one to admit I rarely am able to follow the aforementioned advice. I try, and manage it for a time. Unless it’s ingrained in my schedule though, it won’t ever stick. I’m rooted in schedule and routine, and if I don’t force myself to do it at certain times every day, it just will not happen. I know this about myself though, and that is why my new system has increased my productivity exponentially.

As of now, I would like to project writing at least 50K this month. Given that I’m nearly halfway there, it would be a shame not to make an attempt to reach a higher goal. If I manage to reach upwards of that, then I will count that as a bonus.

To Live In A Moment

To Live In A Moment

At some point in the future, I hope that all of my labor will bear fruits from the seeds that I have sewn. That is what all of us creative types, parents, or people striving for more desire, right? While that time is what I aspire to, even now I find relevance in the present that I am living.

The light filtering through the window, then splashing across the room that I work in, which illuminates the pages I have filled within my spirals, or the exuberant laughter of a small child often accompanied with requests for a story or a jaunt through the woods, remind me that while one day I do hope to have been published many times over, as that is my ultimate goal, I also have other objectives outside of writing. So for now, I will enjoy the mediocrity that is being unknown, for this time and my daughter’s younger years, are only here for so long.

I do not have a fancy desk, but a small functional one, where I can be found at various times throughout any given day, typing away with a fervent flame of desire that courses through me to tell the stories that are woven into the fabric of my soul. I do not have high end devices, but a laptop that has served me well in the time that I have had it. Scattered notes are written throughout multiple notebooks, and someday I may have them readily available in the way that I have witnessed professional authors do. Right now though, I am reveling in my amateur status, because one day I hope to have the privilege of thinking back on it fondly, with the knowledge that the best is yet to come.

Seattle & Stiefvater Seminar: A Recap & Travel Blog

Seattle & Stiefvater Seminar: A Recap & Travel Blog

A few months back, I stumbled upon an advert for Portraits & Dreams. I’ve never attended a writing seminar before, but I’m a writer. So, after reading about the class, I figured, well, what the hell. Why not? Following an early birthday gift in the form of a purchased ticket to the event from my spouse, I was then set to embark to the Emerald City for a class on writing by Maggie Stiefvater.

The day came on a windy Saturday when everything seemed to be against my attending. At least, that’s how it seemed from my perspective at the time. Looking back, there were a set of unfortunate circumstances that could have prevented me from attending, but thankfully, I persevered with the support of my loving husband.

After a dramatic morning of Uber screw-ups, and frustrated cursing, I left with a driver who could bring me to my first destination of the day – the ferry terminal. There, I munched on an apple tart and savored my coffee in a local shop as I attempted to swallow the memory of the morning from my conscious thought.

(Not the best picture I’ve taken, I know. Food and beverage made at Fraiche Cup.)

As one does when utilizing public transportation, I then sat and waited anxiously for the ferry to Seattle. The thrum of various energies surrounding me was both exhilarating and a bit nerve-wracking, but there was cascading sunlight and the promise of a wonderful day in the city. With that in mind, I queued in line when called, and then stepped onto the boat which would bring me closer to my destination.

As we boarded, clouds began to roll in and wind became sharper. It was gorgeous still, but a reminder that nature is not to be stopped by the wishes of humans. It does its will, whether we like it or not. Even so, I snapped a few pictures before I took cover in another viewing area on the upper deck.

One of the first pictures I captured while walking onto the ferry.
Closer to our destination, when the clouds and winds became more prevalent.

The boat rocked and swayed with the water, as it moved at the whims of the wind. Otherwise, it was a beautiful hour-long boat ride, which I quite enjoyed immensely.

About 30 minutes or so in, we had a decent view of the journey’s end. However, pictures were not possible until we were within minutes of docking.

Hello, Seattle!

Right after this pic was snapped, it began to drizzle. Still, the precipitation did not douse my parade of excitement. I had made it this far, right? I couldn’t give up now.

Then, we were docking.

Flurries of feet stamped and pressed against the floor as we each tread towards our separate destinations. The venue where I needed to go was not far from the ferry terminal, but it was an uphill climb.

After a few more minor mix-ups along with some anxiety, I finally arrived!

To summarize, as this is an experience best left unspoiled, in short, it was fantastic! Stiefvater knew how to teach, as well as work the room. Her upbeat energy, coupled with her down to earth attitude, made this class a joy to attend. I learned a great deal. I cannot wait to apply the knowledge I gained to current and future writing endeavors. Attending this seminar is one of the best choices I’ve made for my writing career so far. To be able to learn while also surrounded by over a hundred others who love the craft as much as I do, well, it’s energizing, to say the least. If there’s anyone out there considering it, then please, do yourself a favor and purchase a ticket to a future event! It truly is worth it.

Following the seminar, I captured this last picture as I found my way to the ferry terminal once more.

Again, not the best picture, but I love visuals.

Until next time, Seattle.