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If you’ve been following this series, you know that I take a day off at seven-day intervals; but go ahead and pre-write these posts to say so, because I think it’s important for writers to discuss rest.
Sometimes “creative work” doesn’t seem like work to other people, so “taking a day off” for a writer may sound to some people like “just more loafing”.
Perhaps everyone in the world but me knows who Ethan Hawk is – I tend to have my head buried under the sand when it comes to famous people. Recently, I watched this video. I don’t know of his other beliefs, or actions, so I’m not holding him up as some kind of life role model; but I like what he says in the following clip:
God is a Creator, and we are made in His image, so wouldn’t it logically follow that we are made to be creative, too?
For more on the topic of Creation, Evolution, and some of the Beliefs In-Between, along with what Artificial Intelligence has to say about the issue, you can read my post here. I had a pretty entertaining time researching the topic.
What Did I Accomplish Today to Be a Writer?
I’m writing this ahead of time; but I’m gonna guess it was a day to rest; but still participate in the 100 Words a Day Writing Challenge 2024 through LA Writer’s Lab, because I’m using that to keep a daily journal.
Perhaps it sounds like cheating to say that ten days ahead of time on a daily log; but my purpose for posting this is to address the areas of rest, planning and scheduling things out ahead of time – sort of like putting your skills on auto-pilot.
Writing my thoughts each day is restful for me, because otherwise my words build like steam in a tea pot, turning my thoughts from quaint and cozy into a high-pitched whistle, demanding I attend to them.
I say that word to myself all day long, like it’s a required pre-cursor to any activity. Those two syllables are my self-directed pep-talk to get myself set to move forward.
How Am I Balancing the Different Aspects of Being a Writer?
By taking a break and trying to be better about looking back at what I’ve done in the course of each day, so I can see progress, instead of getting discouraged that I have so many daunting things on my To-Do List.
What I’m Doing About Building a Body of Work as a Writer
Letting the muscles in my mind take a break today.
What I’m Doing to Complete My Manuscripts as a Writer
Tending to brain matters – or matter in my brain – because I think that matters. Okay. I could keep going; but I’ll stop. That makes me think of freeze tag. A brain freeze. Okay, I’m totally random. Sorry for that little episode. That’s how my brain works, which probably doesn’t matter and is an entirely different matter altogether…
What I’m Doing to Grow My Website as a Writer
Letting it run right now.
What I’m Doing to Build My Blog as a Writer
Adding these randomly written updates on a daily basis.
Not so Fun Fact About Me: My tendency to turn things into puns is like a run-away-train, my thoughts could jump the tracks at any given second.
What I’m Doing About Networking as a Writer
Allowing my introverted self, a day of rest from socializing in the writing realm. It’s funny how people seem to think that I’m super outgoing, and I guess I’ve become that way in some aspects; but it takes a lot of alone time behind the scenes to get me ready to face a crowd – and recover afterwards.
What I’m Doing About Monetization as a Writer
As you may have read: I’m in the red. Not in debt, but no doubt currently spending more than I’m making.
Question: Did you hear about how self-driving cars are going to influence country music?
Answer: Soon there will be a song about a guy whose truck left him (in the rain, of course), and ran over his dog. He has to figure out how to deal with his dilemma when a Prius approaches, offering to give him a ride to town.
Maybe I’ll be the one to write it – this even sounds like a viable premise for a Hallmark film in the near future.
You heard it here. Please don’t steal that idea (although the part about the truck leaving a guy was somebody else’s idea – though I don’t remember whose – I’m pretty sure I heard about it on Dry Bar Comedy, and would be happy to leave a link, if someone could enlighten me).
What I’m Doing About Social Media as a Writer
Taking a Siesta.
What I’m Doing About Artificial Intelligence (AI) as a Writer
Not getting a self-driving car or truck.
Recently, a woman in my writing class said she saw a self-driven vehicle in LA that had accidentally gone down an alley and gotten to a Dead End. Apparently, the roadblock hadn’t been added to the car’s mapping system, and it didn’t know what to do. Eventually, it tried backing up, directly into traffic. That invisible driver definitely turned some heads – and probably inspired some colorful language.
What I’m Doing to Stay Organized as a Writer
What comes to mind is the story of Martha and Mary, when the first sister, full of hustle and bustle, complained to Jesus about the second sister being sedentary.
This is how that went:
Now it came to pass, as they went, that he entered into a certain village: and a certain woman named Martha received him into her house.
And she had a sister called Mary, which also sat at Jesus’ feet, and heard his word.
But Martha was cumbered about much serving, and came to him, and said, Lord, dost thou not care that my sister hath left me to serve alone? Bid her therefore that she help me.
And Jesus answered and said unto her, Martha, Martha, thou art careful and troubled about many things: But one thing is needful: and Mary hath chosen that good part, which shall not be taken away from her.– Luke 10:38-42
I don’t know how Martha responded to that. Did she go back to her kitchen, all in a bluster, muttering about what Jesus said, or did she see it as an invitation to sit, and join the rest of the party?
Have you ever been to a party or event, where one person kept jetting about from one task to the next when all you wanted them to do was just sit still and enjoy being together? Have you been that person before?
So often, my tendency to over-schedule can leave me like Martha, instead of Mary. As a writer, I’m reminding myself that it’s usually in stillness that my thoughts are gathered, instead of chaos, which tends to leave my mind scattered.
Looking Back at My Writing Journey
Last year in January, my mom turned 81. We knew it was likely to be her last.
I wasn’t with her. Something about a party made me unsettled. Perhaps it was the stress of daily caregiving – of getting her dressed and to the bedside commode. Of being up throughout the night as bronchitis racked her body and kept me wide awake with her coughing.
(include keeping people in cornbread post)
I just had to step away for a little while. Maybe people didn’t understand why I wouldn’t be at my mom’s last party; but I just couldn’t bring myself to be a part of putting together all those details, especially since I didn’t really think she was up for it.
She’d been on Hospice for nearly a year by then.
My mom is – I have to change that – was notorious for dragging her feet and wound up having a wonderful time; but I know myself and watching her would have wiped me out too much.
Here’s a look back from that day, and what I wrote a couple of weeks later:
Any Other Thoughts on Becoming a Writer, Random Rants, Tales, or Trials…
I’m so thankful the days are getting longer. I can’t imagine living in the Arctic Circle. I’d be shivering for some more daylight for sure.
Thanks for reading what I’m writing,
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