What I’ve been up to

I had a lot to get out in the previous entry, so I didn’t get to the point of properly discussing what I’ve been up to lately. It’s easiest to come here and make updates when things are actually happening in my writing life, so here goes the latest!

Since NaNoWriMo of last year, I’ve been working on the latest version of my oldest novel, which I’m calling Project Oathbreaker for now. I started it with a new protagonist, then realized that I still need the older ones, but writing from a fresh perspective gave the story a new energy that was previously lacking. I still feel a little weird about continuing to write a story that I’ve been working on for so long, through so many incarnations, but the biggest part of me feels that I need to get this out and it will feel so rewarding to finally do so.

I’ve also dusted off a proof copy of Climbing Yggdrasil and started making notes to bring the damn thing to a third draft at long last. I often get annoyed by the fact that I finished its rough draft at the end of 2013 and I still have not gotten it to a place where I feel it’s ready for proper critiques. Maybe this sentiment is wrong and I could actually get more momentum by sharing it with others in its current form, but in the meantime, I have opinions on things I can change. I feel I owe it to future beta readers to take it as far as I can before bringing in outside opinions; I want to respect their time and make the best use of it that I can.

I am also working on a short story to submit for a queer edition of the Malahat Review, using an idea that has been rolling around in my head for a while. Those are my favourites, little seeds of thought that stick around and draw other ideas in until I have no choice but to explore them and see where they lead me. I’d like to say more, but I think it’s best to keep it to myself for the time being. I’ve completed a rough rough draft, and I’m working on fleshing it out a bit more before I seek constructive criticism. I’m excited to submit something for the first time!

With all of this, plus rejoining my soccer team, studying to advance myself at work, and maintaining some semblance of a social life; Google calendar has become my best friend. I am a little nervous about the level of organisation required to keep everything on track, but I am willing to put in the effort and hopefully feel that my time is being well spent and properly enjoyed. The last thing I need is to become completely overwhelmed by too many things going on at once.

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Squandered opportunities

“The road to Hell,” right? I have managed to use my pear timer once, getting a good 800 words out before turning it to zero so that it wouldn’t scare the bejeezus out of me. Then yesterday afternoon, I sat and started writing a short story in my journal. It is my humble opinion that I am crap at short stories, though I have been in a couple of creative writing classes where we submitted short stories and did peer reviews of them. This one is about a painter who has a reputation for producing unique portraits that represent the innermost identity of the subject. It begins with her refusing to paint a client, claiming that he will not like what she creates.

I have kind of hit a lull with my reading, which I need to remedy; I have a list of books I’d like to read, I only have to stick them on my Kobo and go. Then again, being at home this week means not going out as much, and I do most of my reading on the commute to and from work. I have this nasty habit lately of going to bed when I am absolutely too tired to do any reading at all, lest I find myself considering the same sentence for minutes at a time.

I feel a little guilty about not using this vacation time to get a leg up on my writing. It has been excellent for disconnecting from work and recharging myself, for relaxing and enjoying my home space. The problem is, that all sounds very lazy. I have things I want to get done, and I have more time this week to do them, and I am squandering that opportunity.