Tuesday, December 31, 2013

Time Sucks...

There are just some activities that suck up your time.  You say “I’m only going to spend ten minutes on…” and then suddenly it is hours later and you are still on that site. 

This week while I’m home alone all day I have certain goals – mostly to work on cleaning my office.  This means while I am checking emails and so on I have to avoid sites like Ravelry, Pinterest, and Facebook if I’m to accomplish anything at all. 

Don’t get me wrong I LOVE wandering around these sites.  I find inspiration and laughter and a lot more on the sites.  However, I lose time like it is leaking through a sieve.  If I want to accomplish stuff I have to not look at those sites. 

The other thing that sucks up my time is the Kindle Fire that was just handed down to me.  I’ve been setting it up and removing things from the carousel.  I like the format but Kindle missed the mark when they didn’t allow you to put things in folders on the Fire – now if anyone knows how to do that – they should let me know. 

Along with setting things up I’ve been playing games on the Fire.  Backgammon, word games, Phase 10, Skipbo, and so many more are on there, and last night I spent hours playing backgammon, and others.  I will not be touching it today as I have too much to do. 

I have a crochet to do list and the other tasks in the office I want to get done.  Since my gout is bugging me today, it will likely be a crochet day.  I have a long list of what I need to do for crocheting.  If I can’t accomplish one goal, I’ll work on the others.

However, I will be avoiding those damn time sucks as they steal away all my good time so I cannot get done the things I want to get done – even if they are fun to spend time doing.  

Saturday, December 21, 2013

Yule or Winter Solstice

The year is waning, winding down to the calendar end of year.  More than that though it is a time when we have harvested all of our items – whether from the garden or from our lives.  Now we are facing the darkness of winter – allegedly this is a slower time.  However, in our constantly on the go world I don’t know that we actually get to slow down at all. 

When I cope with the craziness of this season, I struggle with all the obligations for the holidays.  What makes it tolerable for me is being with people who are dear to me.  This year that will extend to Kelly and Dominic who are far from their families but a new part of our family. 

This year in particular I am looking at all I’ve accomplished – not just this year but over the last 2 ½ years.  I’ve gotten that second degree finally.  Now I need to clean house (when it comes to my office that is literally) of the old and start looking for what will be next on my schedule. 

While my girls will be home for a few days (YEAH!!!!), I will have a week on my own with no obligations other than what I decide needs to be done.  In this week, I’m going to clean my office and look at what projects I want to work on first.  There are so many which can be a problem as I end up not being able to decide what to do first. 

If you’ve read my blog this will not come as a surprise to you – I have a list of things I want to work on and I’m hoping to focus on them during the next several months.  First and foremost, I want to work on submissions.  I want my work out there and being read.  Love it or hate it – I want editors, publishers, and readers to have the opportunity to see it. 

For this Winter Solstice, I am letting go of being in school and the focus that takes and looking forward to what paths and goals are next.  While I often think I know the path, there are always surprises with life.  This winter I’m going to focus on finding my way – whatever that way may be – editing, writing, crocheting, and just being me. 

There are six weeks until Imbolc (beginning of February).  In this time, I intend to explore all my options.  When I figure out what the next goal is I want to accomplish, I’ll start on the plan for it.  Who knows maybe there will be several goals – after all my life is multi-faceted so why wouldn’t my goals be? 

How will you spend the dark times this season?  What will you let go of at the end of the year?  

Tuesday, December 17, 2013

Done... Over... Complete...

I took my last final today - think I bombed it.  Regardless, I am done.  So long as I didn't fail the class (which I didn't) I have finished my second degree - officially.  Five semesters (2 1/2 years) and I've now got three degrees - Associate Degree in Business Machines (from Blackhawk Technical Institute), Bachelor of Business Administration and Bachelor of Science (both from UW-Whitewater). 

My faculty in my department have all been very supportive and helpful. The student workers who have covered the office have been wonderful. My family has been supportive, encouraging and helpful. It has been an interesting journey to this degree and to those who have helped - Thank you. I couldn't have accomplished what I have without you.

My two business degrees got me through a career in business and public service.  My public service career will continue (until I get my best sellers out there).  My Bachelor of Science is misleading because there was as little science in what I did as I could get away with.  My degree is actually English Professional Writing and Book Editing.  I'm very proud of all my degrees but this one is near and dear to my heart.  The business degrees are just that - business to make sure I can support myself.  The English degree is to move me along my writing career. 

Writing is what keeps me sane (or as sane as I get).  It takes all the images and words in my head and makes it into stories, poems, and other various things.  Whether others end up reading them or not is a different issue but I'm hoping more will be reading them. 

Now that I've finished I have plans.  I didn't get the grant I applied for but that doesn't mean I'm not going to write.  It just means I have to find alternative ways to support my writing.  Moving forward, I need to clean my office.  I have to put away all the school stuff.  Then I have to organize the entire office.  My office has to accommodate all the genealogy stuff, writing stuff, and personal business stuff.  I need to get things organized so all of that will fit and play nice together. 

After I get organized, I will work on self publishing, submissions, completing a manuscript that has been floating for three years.  It is a matter of moving forward to getting published - hopefully paid for my work at the same time. 

Sunday, December 8, 2013

Endings

My wish for the semester was that I wouldn’t have to struggle through a lot of cruddy weather when I went out for classes.  So far this semester it has been cool to cold and I’ve had a rainy day or two. 

Today it is snowing.  We are supposed to get up to five inches before tomorrow.  We will see.  The nice thing – I have one class period left and one final exam.  If the sidewalks are challenging at least it wasn’t a full semester of being challenging. 

In nine days, I will officially be done with my second degree.  I will have earned my bachelor of science in English Professional Writing and Book Editing.  This degree was for me.  My passion is writing and to edit.  I love to tell a great story but I also love to fix writing (mine included). 

I was hoping for a grant but sadly didn’t get one.  They only awarded grants to about three percent of those who applied.  While this slows me down, it doesn’t stop me.  I’m still going to move forward and focus on my writing.

The semester comes to an end.  My second career as a student comes to an end.  However, I feel like it is a good ending.  I’ll have opportunities to expand and explore my skills, time to focus on selling myself as a writer, and make steps forward in getting more published.  

Tuesday, December 3, 2013

Done - almost....

Thanksgiving was wonderful with my daughters, nephew and husband.  We had a good time being together, shopping at a craft store, playing games, watching tv.  Nothing spectacular or extravagant went on but we had a good time just being together.

However, this week has been hell for me.  It is no one’s fault, work hasn’t been bad, classes haven’t been bad.  I just want to be DONE!  Officially I have four class periods left, one chapter to read, two assignments for that chapter and a final exam for that class, and for my other class I have one project to finish with a reflective paper.  If I thought I could still maintain my grades I would say – to hell with it all and just let it all go by the wayside.

I can’t do that because my grades would suffer.  Tonight I’ve spent an hour and half working on my final project.  Tomorrow night I will read the chapter and work on the two assignments.  I know there isn’t a lot left to do and I just need to dig in and do what’s left.  I’m just out of energy.

In two weeks I will be done with not only the semester but with the degree.  I’ll be able to go back to writing on a regular basis (need to have several alarms available so I can set them and get to bed at a good time).  I was hoping for a federal grant to assist with the costs of writing but I didn’t get one.  It won’t stop me – I’m just going to move forward at a slower pace and budget out what I can afford to do. 

First though, I have to get through these two weeks and all the assignments.  I know I will but in this moment I feel worn out and ready for it all to be done and go away!!!!  

Wayfarer Convictions

The new Wayfarer novel is published!!!  Wayfarer Convictions is available on Smashwords and Amazon.  It will be available in paperback by ...