A Mind is a Terrible Thing

It does things like…  squirrel!

Squirrels even distract rabbits

Seriously though… I’m in a bit of a flump today. No ambition, no desire to “get things done”.  It could be that it is absolutely gorgeous outside and the very idea of staying in to write a ROW80 check-in irks me.

And it is gorgeous outside.

Unfortunately, it is Sunday, and that means it’s time to review my progress for the past week.  What an awesome week this has been!

I mean, look at this progress:

  • Goal: working through three chapters weekly of James Scott Bell’s Plot & Structure (including exercises)
  • Progress: detoured progress here in the form of three hours working on developing my antagonists.  One thing I love about all my characters is that they aren’t good or evil but just people trying to get through their lives as best they know how.  That doesn’t mean they’re all nice people; one of my main protagonists goes through half the book intent on killing another of my protagonists.  Another of my ‘big three’, goes out of her way to see her beloved mentor gets brutally murdered.  I call them my protagonists, but it’s really just a matter of perspective…  right?
  • I’ve also started reading Syd Field’s highly recommended book Screenplay, mostly because it’s a library book, and I have a time limit for that where I don’t with Bell’s book.
  • Great Link to follow: How to build a Villain by Jim Butcher
  • Goal: catching up in my local critique group (including submitting something this week)
  • Progress: group is on hold for the month of April; however, I have opened up one of the pending files in my inbox to start critiquing it
  • Goal: typing two pages a day of old notebooks in
  • Progress: on track, despite having been slightly behind Wednesday
  • Goal: (VIG) Write new words daily! (the Five Sentences thingie)
  • Progress: Most days, the words have flowed fast and furious. Averaging my daily new story words, it seems I’m getting 1,134 words of new rough (very rough) draft story.  In addition, I’ve been filling up One Note and my Notes feature on my iPhone with all sorts of cool possibilities.  New ideas are definitely not one of my writing problems.

ROW80LogocopySo, it seems like I’m finding my rhythm again, and I’m having lots of fun with my characters.  Each extra moment I’ve spent with them has presented so many precious insights.  Sometimes silly, sometimes sweet things: like knowing that ‘Listii refuses to kill doe rabbits if he knows they’re nursing young, or that Vissellii has been a wallflower (not of her choice) at every festival or society dance she’s ever been to.

Final tally…  a pretty close to perfect week.  I’m feeling it now, however.  No energy.  Absolutely none…  So before I push myself to the next step, which is to add back in one of my beloved blog hops such as WeWriWa (Weekend Writing Warriors) or the Wednesday WIPpet, I’m going to maintain this pace without added commitments.  If I’m inspired by posting time for one of the challenges and I’ve gotten all my critiques for my local group finished and posted, then sure…  I may go for it.  But these goals are my first writing priority.

And at this point, my mind is saying “Don’t even think it.”  😦

Now that you’re done here, how about you give some love to our other great ROWers.

15 responses to “A Mind is a Terrible Thing

  1. I know that feeling all too well. Sometimes we need a break.

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    • Or the right kind of push… Staying at home with a husband and kidlet who just want to lounge and hang out didn’t help. But going to my local write-in group did….

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  2. Hooray for weeks like this! I stayed up all night reading an amazing TnT fanfic (#itswritingresearch, I tell you!) – and then it. Just. Stopped.

    GAH! And a bit of WAH!

    Once we were both awake, Lise and I spent an hour or so hanging outside together, chatting, walking, and playing Littlest Pet Shop. I got my update all ready to go first, so I just needed to finish it when we came back in.

    The neighbors’ dog thought it was a good day to explore our yard. =)

    I might wash a few dishes, and fol some laundry, before I head out. I raked a bit earlier, and took a solo breathwalk,

    As for the crit group….I’m planning on opening one of the back files I owe, too. There won’t be anything to worry about from me this month, because there’s just not enough me to stretch that far! =)

    I won’t be opening the rest of my “Scavenger” batch until I catch up with Shannon and Anna. Not that I’ve got focus to process comments there right now, anyway…those durned squirrles….

    See you soonish! Hopefully, Denny’s won’t be overrun with distracting rodents tonight. Distraacting and enriching conversations, though, are a whole different animal! =)

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    • I actually stopped reading fanfiction (and worked harder on writing my own) because I got tired of the so many unfinished stories. It’s been a while since I spent any time there though, so who knows what I’d find now. Not much J&tWW stuff, I imagine.

      Yeah, I’m sort of avoiding the critiques you all sent me lately too. Not because I’m worried about what you said, but I want to get this Camp Writing done first. Priorities… but I’m waffling on sending out crits, since I didn’t submit that many pieces for critiquing. I mean… I feel like I should do them because they came into my inbox, and yet I feel kind of like… hey, I’d like to submit, and.. it’s a mess.

      I’m just hoping for another productive week–and today has not been very productive so far, so… guess I need to do something about that. If you’re free this evening, sprints online?

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      • I’ll have to see…it’s been a frustrating day for me thus far…I don’t have many anymore, but this one kind of makes me wish I could run away and hide till it’s over…but I know that wouldn’t really help as much as getting on with life and trying to salvage what I can of a beautiful day will…

        So maybe a sprint or two, but not between 10 and 11, because that’s Castle time. =)
        And Castle is definitely something to look forward to on a day that’s been kind of yuccky.

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        • Absolutely understood. I’m sorry that I tagged you so much then yesterday… if I’d seen this before, I’d not have. Many hugs.

          And yeah… Dan and I have three Castles to catch up on now, so no spoilers please!

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  3. Yay rhythm! Rhythms are possibly the most helpful thing ever when it comes to accomplishing things. I can sympathize on getting worn out, too. It makes sense to find your plateau before you push yourself harder. (Though I hope to see you around WIPpet Wednesday soonishly. 😀 )

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    • One of these days… definitely. I miss the camaraderie and the push to fix up my very rough, wandering drafts (I tend to spend an inordinate amount of time in my character’s head with them talking to themselves these days–must fix that). As for the worn out thing… I think a lot of it comes down to Spring Fever and not really getting to hibernate this winter the way I’d hoped. We’ll see. Even if I just stay here for a couple weeks, I’m still getting a lot of work done that’s been waiting in the wings for far too long.

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  4. I love the picture you posted, that even rabbits get distracted – squirrel. And it so hard to get anything done when it is so nice outside, and I have a day job that keeps me inside four solid days a week.
    Anyway, great job with those goals. Keep it up!

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    • Well, call me an idgit… I did reply to this, then hit cancel instead of the reply button. Guess it was the squirrel or something…
      Thanks for the encouragement, Chris. May we both get to enjoy more awesome outside time.

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  5. Pingback: Uneven Performance | Leavekeeping

  6. I’ve definitely had weeks like that. They are wonderful, but can certainly be draining. But, having fun with characters is a wonderful thing. It’s been gorgeous out here, too. Definitely should take advantage of it.

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  7. I remember reading a few weeks ago (???) about Bell’s Character and Plot and thinking, hmmm, maybe I should do that. Thanks for the push. I moved it to the top of my TBR. Great progress all the way around, in spite of the desire to flump (spring flump). And I really like that 5 sentences daily that’s pushing you to write — as well as your perseverance NOT to join in any challenges that will get in the way of your writing goals. I should have listened to YOU before signing on for that AtoZ blogging challenge! Make it a good week.

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    • Don’t regret the A-Z, Beth. It’s one month, and while it may be crazy right now, I’m sure you’re meeting some amazing writers out there. I fully wanted to join this year… Life just wasn’t having any of it. Someday…

      So, maybe it’s not just perseverance. I haven’t “carpe diem”ed yet.

      But I do swear by those five sentences. 😉

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