Category Archives: Motivation

Seven (7) in (in) Five (5)


Seven in five.

September, 2016 to February, 2017.

That’s my timeline.

“For what?” you’re wondering.

I have seven books in the works and my plan is to have them all written and published by February, 2017.

“Seven books in five months? Are you nuts?” you might be asking.

Yes, it does seem daunting. A novel length book is a minimum of 50,000 words. Multiply that by 7 and you get 350,000 words. That’s a decent amount of words.

Unless you’re a writer. On average I write 5,000-15,000 words a week, not including Facebook posts, emails, blog posts or messages. That’s 20-60k words a month, mainly about stuff I really don’t care about. In five months, that’s 100k to 300k words.

But the good news is that I don’t have to actually write that many words. Three of the books are at various stages of completion (two over 50 percent completed). Two of the books are going to be more novella length (less than 50k but more than 25k). I guesstimate having to write around 235k words between now and late January, early February. Which is more than doable.

Well, don’t overwork yourself. Don’t burn out. Pace yourself. This has been the advice from many. I appreciate the words, I know they are meant to be helpful.

But hush already. LOL This is how I want to make my living. I don’t want to write for mills and impossible clients anymore. I don’t want to spend my days writing about stuff I don’t much care about. I can deal with doing it for a few hours a week, but not all day, every day. Not anymore. I’m starting to view my work with the same disdain reserved for “traditional” work gigs. And I can’t allow that to happen.

So, I’m diving in and getting these books written. This is what I want to do with my life, it’s how I want to make a living. Are the next few months going to be easy? Nope. Have I bitten off more than I can chew? Perhaps. I can always change my schedule if I need to, but I’m going to try like hell not to do that. I’ve been saying “I’ll do it later” to my career for more years than I even want to think about. I’m staring at 50. If not now, when? If not me, who?

So, wish me luck. Ask me how things are going. Say prayers, light candles, think good thoughts as I dive into my career, the career I’ve always wanted, for what feels like the first time. I’m excited. Let’s do this!

 

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Nailed it!


One of my birthday gifts was a nail appointment. So Tuesday the Diva and I headed to the salon to get our nails done.

Now, I like getting my nails done. I like how they look when they’re done. But considering I spend hours pounding keys, working with wire and metal and tools, to say I’m rough on a set of acrylics would be an understatement. But again, I like how they look so get them done once in a while.

I was at a loss as to what to get on them. I knew my desired length and shape and I knew the color.But what to get on them…

Then it hit me. They should serve as a reminder of what I do. So..

 

So, I havea question mark on my thumb, an exclamation point on my index finger, a semi-colon on my middle finger, a colon on my ring finger and a comma on my pinky. Yes, I picked each one for each finger for a reason. No, I won’t tell you, but feel free to post your guesses in the comments. 🙂

 

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Why I Detest “All Lives Matter”


When the #BlackLivesMatter movement first gained momentum, it was quickly followed by the response, “All Lives Matter.” For the longest time, that response bugged me, but I couldn’t figure out why.

Then it dawned on me.

It was like telling someone who had just lost their home to a fire, “Yeah, well so-and-so lost their house last month and such-and-such lost their house two days ago. Why are you special?”

Well you’re special because right there…at that very moment, it was happening to YOU. You wanted someone to reach out and help YOU in your moment of pain. You wanted someone to put an arm around you and say, “It will be okay. We’ll figure it out.”

THAT is why “All lives matter” is the LAST thing you should say in response to “____ Lives Matter.” Doesn’t matter which lives we’re talking about. It’s dismissive to any and all of them. So quit saying it.

So, what can you say instead? Let me help you out:

#Black Lives Matter

Response: You’re right, they should but to some they don’t. We’re going to figure out a way to make it so they do.

#Women’s Lives Matter

Response: You’re right, they should but to some they don’t. We’re going to figure out a way to make it so they do.

#LGBT Lives Matter

Response: You’re right, they should but to some they don’t. We’re going to figure out a way to make it so they do.

Get it? From now on, every time someone trots out All Lives Matter, I’m linking them to this post. Because I’m like my father, I don’t like to repeat myself, and I’ve been beating this drum for far too long.

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Channeling My Inner Peter Gibbons


For a while now I’ve not been happy with my career trajectory.

And by “awhile,” I mean several years. Heading into a decade actually.

Now technically, I am a writer. I write words. I get paid. I write more words…

Wash. Rinse. Repeat.

The problem: I don’t like the words I’m writing.

The other problem: I don’t like what I’m getting paid for the words I write.

The third problem: I don’t like the crap I have to deal with while writing the words I write.

Not liking what I write + Not liking the pay for what I write + Dealing with crap while I write =

A PETER GIBBONS MOMENT

I hope that most of you get the reference to the guy who was the hero of all cubicle dwellers in the early ’00. But for those of you who are not familiar with the guy or the movie in which he appeared, check this out:

This is the attitude that greeted me this morning. It’s not the first time, but this go around it was accompanied with a declarative statement:

I’m done.

I’m done working for peanuts.

I’m done writing about stuff I don’t give a crap about.

I’m done with being too tired to work on writing I WANT to do because I have to work on so much of the crap to make ends meet.

I’m done dealing with clients who do not appreciate what I do for them.

I’m done feeling guilty for crocheting, chainmailling or just watching a tv show and not working at the same time.

I don’t like working for peanuts, for people who don’t appreciate what I do for them anyway so I’m just not going to do it anymore.

I’m. Done.

So here is my plan:

By the end of next month, I will have my book completed (“From the Minds of my Family” is the tentative title. I also like “Words with Skip and Mary,” but that might be limiting.) and a solid first draft for my online dating book. No idea what I’m going to call it.

I have two clients that I will continue to work with because I actually enjoy working with them. I will seek new clients, but I’m going to be picky.

I’m going to go back to my first love, which is feature writing.

And finally, I’m going to crochet and chainmaille more, hang out with my granddaughter and watch tv….without feeling guilty about any of it.

Life is about to get more interesting because I’m finally going to, you know, LIVE IT!

🙂

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46(?)/46/46 – Day #6: It’s Monday


That’s the best thing I can say about it. It’s been a long day, I’m cranky and I feel like I am receiving karmic retribution for every stupid, mean or obnoxious thing I’ve done in the last decade. Oh well, this will pass.

But I’m tired of feeling like I’m sitting around, spinning my wheels and getting nowhere. I think I’ve made changes that will correct that, but I’m impatient by nature and want it fixed now.

Yesterday actually.

Well, I’d love to stay and chat about any number of random or mundane things, but I have deadlines. Lots of deadlines. Yeah.

FYI – I’m not complaining about having too much work, I’m complaining about  the work process. That’s all I’m going to say. Sometimes the process sucks. Sometimes it’s awesome. It’s like any other career. Some days, you wake up, smile, sip some coffee and get right to work. Other days, the last thing you want to do is string words together in any cohesive order. Today would be one of those latter days.

The thing is, although I don’t want to write today, I’m blogging about not wanting to write.

The humor of the concept is not wasted on me.

Later peeps!

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46(?)/46/46 – Day #4: When I die…


As usual, I’m sitting here, working. I always have music or a show playing in the background, and today’s selection is my “Wicked” soundtrack. My love for this musical cannot really be measured. Which is why it still sticks in my craw that I have yet to see it on Broadway. It’s certainly high on my bucket list.

Hum…you know if it’s on your bucket list, then obviously it’s important to you, so how do you decide which thing on your bucket list is the most important? I have a bucket list but I don’t know how much progress I’ve made. Obviously “see Wicked on Broadway” remains unchecked…

This also makes me think of what my final wishes are. A few days ago I told one of my friends that when I pass I don’t want a stuffy, formal funeral. I want a party. I’m flattered that there could be people who will weep at my passing, I’d much prefer my dearest celebrate my passing with a party. Share memories, laugh a lot, enjoy that I was once there instead of mourning the fact I am now gone.

I also have an interesting request for my remains. Here’s the step-by-step request:

1. Cremate me. If you just HAVE to have a viewing, rent the casket, do it for a day and move on.

2. Throw the party I mentioned above.

3. When you get my remains back from the crematorium, get on a plane to Jamaica.

(Some of you know what’s coming, lol)

4. Fly to Ochos Rios.

5. Pick a waterfall, doesn’t matter which one.

6. Let’s back up a second. When you get off the plane and hop in a taxi, you will be offered something. Take it, you’ll need it later. Later, (and still before the waterfall) use what you were offered in the taxi (or the airport, or by the guy who carries your bag through the airport). Add those ashes to my ashes. Now, go to the waterfall.

7. Dump my ashes into the water.

8. As for financing this adventure, that’s why I have life insurance. 🙂

Okay, now that I have that off my chest, I’m going back to work. Broadway tickets and trips to NYC aren’t free.

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46(?)/46/46 – Day #2: HAPPY NEW YEAR!


So, it’s 2015 and that means everyone is busting out their resolutions. Lose weight. Eat better. Save more money. Be nicer. All things people have pledged and all valid and good goals.

I’m not a fan of making new years resolutions. For example, I didn’t decide on Jan. 1 of last year to quit smoking. I decided one day in Feb. or March (can’t remember which) to quit, and I quit. A specific day of the year isn’t enough motivation for me to start or stop something.

But everyone keeps asking me what my resolution(s) for 2015 is/are. So, to appease these people, here is my lone New Years 2015 Resolution:

I resolve to be me.

Yeah, that might sound like a simple thing to do, but it’s really not. This is ME we’re talking about. I spend a good part of my life debating what I should or should not say, what I should or should not do, and what others might think about my decisions. In other words, when I say I don’t really care about what others think, what I really mean is that what others think of feel aren’t enough to stop me from doing or saying what I want to do or say.

Yes, ladies and gents…there are times when I STILL don’t say or do what I want to say or do.

Feel free to shudder at the thought.

But frankly, my resolution has less to do with what I say and do and more with what I allow around me and the things I go along with. Up until now, I’ve excused behavior or attitudes or opinions that made me uncomfortable, whether it was because I “thought” I understood what they person really meant, or I was sure the person didn’t actually mean what they said and were just talking out of anger, confusion or just legitimate ignorance. I did that a lot last year.

A. LOT.

I’m not going to do it anymore. If you say something I don’t agree with or that could be interpreted in a variety of ways, I’m going to ask you to clarify it. From that point, we’ll either remain friends with a new understanding, or…

Because I’m no longer willing to be the “exception.” I’ve done that for 45 years. I’m not doing it for 46.

This covers a variety of areas and not just the obvious ones some of your immediately jumped to. It covers both my personal and professional life. That said, just because we might not agree on an issue doesn’t mean the friendship is over. I disagree with a lot of my friends about a lot of things, and I KNOW many of you disagree with me quite often. Those aren’t the types of situations I’m referring to. I guess, the only thing I can suggest is that you be you, I’ll be me and we’ll see what we see.

So I guess you could sum up my resolution as such: The gloves are off.

See what happens when you make me do something I don’t want to do? 😉

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Debate Number 1…


is now behind us. And what did we learn?

1. Obama hasn’t had to defend his stance in a long time.

2. Romney doesn’t seem to understand the rules of debate.

3. Jim Lehrer never had control of the debate as moderator.

4, Town Hall formats without a town hall are just stupid.

5. Romney loves Big Bird, but has no problem firing him.

6. Romney has a plan. He’ll tell you what it is later.

7. Obama lost this debate. Yeah, I said it. Obama didn’t show up. He didn’t really have to.

8. Romney won this debate. Of course he had to.

Overall, I can’t say I’ve come out of this debate with any more information than I had going in. I’m still waiting for all the fact-checkers to chime in — they’re got their work cut out for them.

If there’s a “smoking gun” revealed, I’ll discuss that tomorrow, or whenever it’s revealed.

In other news, I had three of my favorite clients contact me with work today, which was cool. I started a new piece of chainmaille jewelry, which is cool, too.

And today, I did actually feed the dogs. 😉

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First Day of the (Work) Week, First Day of the Month and a Blog Challenge


I’ve been wanting to get back into blogging, but just could not figure out how to squeeze it in. But since there’s another Ultimate Blog Challenge, and the first of October falls on a Monday, I figured it was the planets aligning to allow me to jump back in. So, here I am.

No idea what I’m going to write about to fill 31 days, but I’m sure things will come to me when they need to. Lord knows, my friends on Facebook and Twitter provide me with enough fodder, not to mention my um, entertaining family. So, I imagine this month will be a hodge-podge of things. Hopefully, at least some of it will be entertaining.

I’ve got a lot of irons in the fire (even more than usual *yikes*), so I doubt there are going to be a lot of long, rambling posts, but I will strive to post something every day, even if it’s more of a “Dear Diary, today I fed the dogs and cleaned the oven,” kinda post than something more meaningful. Of course, I hope to provide more entertaining fare, but sometimes, you get what you get. 🙂

And with that, I’m going to sign off. Got work to do, lists to make, blog post ideas to conjure up…

See you tomorrow.

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Yeah and Meh…


The last few weeks have been challenging, and I’m not sure why.

I’ve pared down my client list to three clients I love, so work isn’t really a chore at the moment.

I’m making progress on my “Quest for National Publication,” so that’s good.

I don’t have any pressing issues, obligations or major things to worry about…so yay to that.

And yet…here I sit, uneasy about it all.

Maybe things are too easy…they’re going too smoothly.

I’m not used to smooth. I’m used to craziness, chaos, bedlam.

That I can do — I thrive on that.

But this…this is foreign to me.

Now, I know some of you are thinking, “Be glad it’s going smoothly, and enjoy it.” And, I know you’re right — I should be…

But I can’t. And I don’t know why.

And that bugs me.

But not enough to make me feel better.

And if you followed that, well, I don’t know whether to apologize to you or applaud you.

What does it say about someone who can’t be happy when things are going well?

Ok – that’s a bit of a reach. I’m happy…just uneasy about the happiness.

That doesn’t really make it sound better, does it?

I’m just more comfortable with chaos. I know what to expect with chaos.

I’d like to get comfortable with things going well…

I guess it will take practice.

Until then, I’ll just stress out about not being stressed out. That always makes me feel better.

Again — apologies and applause. 🙂

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