I’m sort of at a writing loss this fall. First, I fell behind on mindful52. Recently, I’d been trying to catch up, but noticed that the organizer lost some steam as well and posts and responses have become fewer and far between and maybe even stopped completely in October. Then, I gave up on NaNoWriMo (although I’ve kept up with NaBloPoMo).
I was really looking forward to Reverb, which last year took place during December. But today I received an email from the main organizer who has decided not to host it this year. She encouraged everyone to write our own Reverb prompts and then comment on them throughout the month, possibly inviting others to respond to our prompts. I can tell the community feels a little abandoned and irritated that she waited until the last minute to let everyone know, and I certainly feel this myself. It’s just not the same as being given a new prompt each day, with several thousand other people responding to the same prompts on the same day in a sort of collective group meditation. And tomorrow is already December 1—not a lot of time to come up with our own list. However, there are a few people seeing this as a challenge: brainstorming ideas and posting them on twitter. Maybe I’ll end up following one of those, or come up with a list tomorrow morning…
Although it’s disappointing, I can’t really blame the organizers for petering out on mindful52 or reverb. They put a huge amount of time, energy, and resources into creating and maintaining these challenges, and who knows what is happening in their personal lives?
If not for December, I like the idea of writing the prompts ahead of time for my February light box month.
Pretty tired after two nights in a row at the station working on our Nov 8 show. Also, have done zero NaNoWriMo yesterday or today. I really thought I was going to get a great start. But, weekends are for catching up, right?
I had an impressive baking fail today. I tried to make the scone recipe off the back of the Bob’s Red Mill millet flour package. I thought it would be easy to veganize. I used chickpea flour and water for egg replacer (even though it said egg whites), and I subbed ½ the white flour with white whole wheat flour. I’m not sure what happened, but the dough wouldn’t stick together well, the scones turned out flat, and they had this weird aftertaste, which I think is from the chickpea flour. I’ve made similar types of substitutions before, and have had success, but not today. Even Ruby didn’t want the scones. Also, it seems that whenever the weather changes (it’s finally turned winter and we had our first snow flurries today), my oven temperature has to be adjusted—the oven seemed to be running about 25 degree hot today, according to the thermometer. The bread loaf I baked after the scones was a little off too—it browned too quickly.
It’s time, once again, for National Novel Writing Month. I’m utterly exhausted from work, and so very sick of sitting in front of this laptop, but how could I resist signing up for the craziness that is NaNoWriMo? Won’t you join me? Or, do National Blog Posting Month (NaBloPoMo) and post daily to your blog. I’ll be doing BOTH, because I like to punish myself that way.
Tomorrow marks one year since I began posting a daily blog post! I only missed two days out of the last year: One crazy long day when a friend of mine and I drove to Portland and back and got back in the middle of the night and I just forgot to blog, and one deliberate day of silence. Although I’ve enjoyed the blogging habit, I’m looking forward to some longer private writing sessions again, with some public contest fun thrown in to make it interesting.
Last year we didn’t have kids here in November, and the show was just starting. I’m not sure if I’ll be able to handle it all—we’ll see!
reflect on this year and manifest what’s next
5 Minutes. Imagine you will completely lose your memory of 2010 in five minutes. Set an alarm for five minutes and capture the things you most want to remember about 2010.
Busy activism, yoga, turmoil, shock, betrayal, absence of step-kids, fear, doubt, goodbye Connecticut, anger, dark cloud, illness, climbing out, acupuncture, resignation, doubt, so long Big Kitty, disappointments, busy activism, hello mountain biking, challenge, fun, goodbye yoga, hello garden, hello ladders and paint, vegan podcasts constant voices in my head, busy activism, NaNoWriMo, NaBloPoMo, fear, doubt, farewell Deimos, hello writing, radio show.
Details… and more…
What I’ve learned from obsessively writing for participating in NaNoWriMo & NaBloPoMo during the month of November, 2010:
- It’s OK to do something goofy and impossible sounding once in a while.
- It’s not a good idea to do both NaNoWriMo & NaBloPoMo at the same time. (Even though I completed both!) That being said, though, it was sometimes refreshing to take an idea that I had meandered on about four hours, and have to distill it down for a public blog post.
- Writing is a habit I’ve missed.
- Writing brings up painful things. Which is why, although I had kept journals almost since I’d learned to write, I gave it up for a number of years after my mom died.
- Writing can get you through tough times. I could have just quit and disappeared into my grief when Deimos grew sick and died this month. Instead, I was able to work through it much better than in February when I lost my friend Connecticut. Why did I ever deny myself this outlet?
- When you do too many things at once, something has got to give. What I didn’t let give, was eating well and getting regular exercise. However, I had to dial back my volunteer advocacy efforts just a little, while still helping the major events to go smoothly. (Less meetings, a little less time at the studio.) And it’s nice to have an understanding hubby who picks up some of the slack around the house.
- Write in the morning before work, and before the day gets away from you. Even if you’re not a morning person.
- Write way more daily at the beginning of the month than you think you need to. I thought I did this, but it wasn’t enough. I hit a distinct plateau mid month, then had to write like a crazy lady over the holiday and almost up to the last-minute to catch up.
- Writing is sometimes lonely, but that’s OK.
- It’s hard to be pithy and/or eloquent every single day. Especially when you’ve just spent several hours trying to get your word count in for NaNoWriMo. And it’s 11:45 p.m.
- If you consistently post your blog post right before midnight, not that many people will see it.
- My smart phone doesn’t take great photos. It lacks a flash, and I took most of my photos at night. It is conveniently available, but if I want engaging photos, especially of food, I might want to learn how to use the nicer digital camera.
Here’s hoping that I’ve created a blogging habit and I won’t wait until next November to post again.
Always room for nic nacs
A marathon writing spree and I have finished NaNoWriMo today: 50,234 words written during the month of November. To be fair, I wouldn’t exactly call it a “novel,” but a possible memoir and/or fantasy story was born, and a habit was resurrected, which is good enough for me. Now I will go collapse.
But first, I leave you with this followup. I have found a picture of the actual console radio on my Weird Things list. It’s not identical to the one on eBay, but pretty darn close: notice the horizontal paneling on the eBay one, and the vertical paneling on my childhood one. Also, I remembered incorrectly about not being able to set anything on top. There are plenty of lovely items on top of the console radio in this picture.
By the way, I don’t know what possessed me to do both NaNoWriMo and NaBloPoMo in the same month, especially after failing at both last year, but I would not suggest that to anyone. Ever.