My Journey to Become a Writer 01/13/2024 Post #13

What Did I Accomplish Today to Be a Writer?

Not a lot – I unboxed my printer; but don’t yet have internet, so my attempt at set-up was a dud. 

As for actual writing, I did Day 13 of the 100 Words a Day Writing Challenge 2024 through LA Writer’s Lab

The morning started out well; but I had a conversation that was unexpectedly brief and left me wondering if I’d said or done something wrong, which then made me fall apart for a while. 

Sometimes I can be a little too sensitive.

I’m trying to remind myself, “It’s not always about you, sometimes it’s them” (though not always). 

Anyway, I went from pretty peppy about accomplishing stuff to rather shattered.  Maybe I need a nap to help put the broken pieces back in place.

I do think by the end of the week I’m too worn out to face major projects, and it’s probably best to schedule in the sixth day as a day to piddle on little jobs instead of anything too intense. 

I’m still definitely needing some physical recovery from so much stress and lost sleep over the past year (or several years) with being a caregiver and consolidating my parents’ house – but I forget that easily and go back to berating myself for not getting everything marked off my To-Do List.

I guess I’m writing about that now, right here, so does that count as an accomplishment toward becoming a writer?

What Am I Afraid of Doing Next in My Journey as a Writer?

I’m afraid of my To-Do List snowballing.

Stuff I find myself saying:  I’m so tired.

– Jody Susan

How Am I Balancing the Different Aspects of Being a Writer?

Nudging myself to write on a regular basis; but not forcing it, if I’m really not up for facing creative work.

What I’m Doing About Building a Body of Work as a Writer

Still keeping up with these.

What I’m Doing to Complete My Manuscripts as a Writer

Trying to get my printer set up, so I can pass out some copies and get feedback.  In February, I intend to attend a conference and pitch my story to some agents.  I want to get more comfortable with doing that.

What I’m Doing to Grow My Website as a Writer

I was going to head to a coffee shop to figure out the “Alt Text” and “opening tabs in a new window” issues; but then I had that super-short conversation that stung so badly, and I wound up hitting “Control/Alt/Delete” on my original plans.  Another reminder to get my work done early, before there’s drama in my head that distracts me from my intended tasks.

What I’m Doing to Build My Blog as a Writer

Keeping up with these posts.  I definitely still feel like I’m in the “small potato” realm.  I’m hoping next week to start making headway on the pile of rough drafts sitting neglected on my WordPress dashboard.

Not so Fun Fact About Me:  I am overly sensitive.

What I’m Doing About Networking as a Writer

I don’t know.  I haven’t seen another human being today, unless they were driving by, and they barely saw me – just a pair of eyes in basically a Burka with camo print, cause it’s so cold and windy here.

What I’m Doing About Monetization as a Writer

Nothin’ yet.

What I’m Doing About Social Media as a Writer

I looked a little at Instagram – as a consumer but not a producer.  It didn’t feel like a good use of my time, and maybe that’s the main issue I have with posting – will I really be benefiting anybody, or will I just be wasting their time?

What I’m Doing About Artificial Intelligence (AI) as a Writer

Not today.

That thought seems incomplete.

Most of my intelligence is seeming to follow suit today – I don’t even want to try to concentrate.

Maybe my mental capacity has gone with the wind – which is blowing incredibly hard. 

Half the barn door fell off during the night.  Does that make the doorway half full, or half empty?

Anyway, that phrase “gone with the wind” puts me in mind of The Bellamy Brothers, so why don’t I go ahead and do a little song break here to appreciate some lyrics about slower times, when “Social” meant sitting on the front porch, instead of staring at our phones.

I’m wondering if historical revisionists will soon ban this song.  Maybe AI won’t even allow it.  I don’t know.  Either way, it reminds me of a time when I rewrote the words – back when I was filling vending machines…

She’s tired from the vend

‘Bout to complain

Get ready here comes the whine

Exhaustion she does not feign

She won’t drop a soda can

If you’ll only take her home

She’s tired from the vend

She’s tired from the vend

Anyway, I’m digressing even from my original digression.  I’ve always loved rewriting songs – but I still haven’t finished the trilogy-tune project that is taped up on my living room walls.

Hopefully that will be done soon.  I just didn’t have it in me today.

What I’m Doing to Stay Organized as a Writer

Today I got a grocery list together, using actual real-life recipes from my recipe box.  I don’t think I’ve really done that in about five years, ever since life changed so suddenly with my uncle’s diagnosis of a glioblastoma brain tumor.  From there, it’s been one caregiving situation after another, with needing to recover in between. 

I’m so thankful to have my recipe boxes out of storage and be able to have space to start cooking again.

Maybe that doesn’t sound like it has anything to do with writing; but I do a lot better with a meal plan.  It takes away the stress of trying to think of what to fix when I’ve forgotten to eat, and if I can spare myself extra trips to the store, I tend to save a lot of money. It seems to get exponentially more expensive every time I have to run in for “just a few things”.

Looking Back at My Writing Journey

I just received “The 90-Day Memoir” by Al Watt in the mail.  In 2019, when I first determined to start writing, I watched the following interview, and decided to take a risk by investing in “The 90-Day Novel” and a little tiny laptop on Clearance at Wal-Mart, that really was just a tablet with an attached keyboard. 

This video Jennifer L Scott did with Al Watt was part of me deciding to go ahead and do what I’d dreamed of for years.

When I watched this interview, I had nearly no money, and even less confidence that I could write something worth reading; but it was something that had been burning inside me to do for a long time, so I bought that tablet and Al’s book, and here I am. 

I haven’t gone hungry. 

I have to laugh, because it’s about 21 degrees, and I’m sitting in my car, borrowing Wi-Fi from the Honeywell Center, since mine isn’t set up yet. I’m still not exactly what I’d call “successful”; but I have survived.

Maybe I should change the title of these posts to “How to Not Get Hypothermia While Trying to Become a Writer”.

Any Other Thoughts on Becoming a Writer, Random Rants, Tales, or Trials…

This morning, I realized all the and pillows and cushions from my benches had been blown away by high winds.  Five of eight were missing in action.  I knew I should have brought them inside before we got all this weather; but they’d been wet, and I just didn’t want to deal with storing them. 

So – I had to take off across the field today to fetch them in the freezing cold.  Some were nowhere in sight. 

The jet stream had strung them all the way into the next corn field, where two deer spotted me, and took off at a sprint. The force of the wind was so strong that I could only carry one at a time across a distance I’d guess to be the size of a football field. 

I couldn’t see the fourth until I had reached the third, and the fifth was invisible to me, until I got the fourth and looked around over a small embankment through the slit between my hoods and scarf.  As I carried them back, I could feel freezing rain hitting my eyeballs like pieces of sand; but it was kind of a fun adventure, and I was grateful to find them.

It made me think about when something goes wrong – or seems lost – sometimes it’s in the seeking that we brave the bounds of our comfort zone.  I hadn’t been beyond the small square of my yard, and this mishap set me on quite a journey I never would have ventured to start without the disappearance of those cushions. 

It reminded me that so often it’s in what goes wrong that the most growth happens.  I would have never learned to repair vending machines, if they’d not malfunctioned – or if I hadn’t dropped a drink and had to take everything apart to clean the sticky mess.

It didn’t take long to learn that if I drop a soda can, the smartest thing to do is launch my body upon it, like I’m trying to cover a grenade – maybe there will be a vending machine memoir in my future – I’ve got quite a few tales to tell.

Anyway, I was talking about going after those lost bench cushions and pillows and trying to bring it around to a metaphor for trying to make my website work and improve my writing. I am seeing that it’s my mistakes that make me venture beyond my comfort zone – and it’s in loss that I have learned to step away from warm comfort and go searching. I’m not sure if that makes sense, or not.

Thanks for reading what I’m writing (you might just be the only one),

Jody Susan


I'm not sure what to say here: I once got second place in a dog-look-alike-contest? I know how to fold a fitted sheet? I'm pretty much a poster child for social backwardness - at least as far as social media is concerned; but I have some stories I think I'm supposed to share and am attempting to do that here, in this space.

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