breaking past the block

I’m trying to get past a writing slump–both creative and bloggish. Today, I made time to just write. Nothing but writing for a few hours. So here I am at Starbucks on my favorite chaise longue typing away. And it’s been good. Not the highest word count, but something that makes me feel there is something to my plodding away at this project.

I’ve also gotten myself a Starbucks card after much urging from one of my students. The hope is that this will keep me within a coffee/tea budget while spurring me on to get out of the house and just be. Just me and Bellatrix (the laptop. I have a thing about old Latin names for my devices. The iDevice is Zephyrus).

The goal is to finish this project before NaNoWriMo. Because after years of being bogged down by coursework, I think I can finally take part in the challenge. I have an idea, I just need to find the time and discipline to write every day.

Also have two professional development courses coming up in the next two months. I may have challenged myself a bit too much this time. Off we go!

computer fatigue

There are some days when I spend so much time in front of a computer that the last thing I want to do is bother turning on my laptop. It’s a negative sort of situation, because while I am all for getting away from the computer and experiencing non-digital moments, I am a writer… I need to get on this thing and write! I especially need to get the last of my papers out of the way so that I can have some real writing time and not writing-on-someone-else’s-deadline writing time. Ugh. Need a power nap. And a cappuccino.

coming to a close

The semester is well and truly winding down. With less than three weeks before the term ends, I am in full paper editing mode. I hate paper editing mode. I am dreadfully lazy about it. Not about the actual editing; I am a drafter and multiple edit-er when it comes to essays, but actually getting myself to do it requires a bit of effort 😕 . I just hate reading my papers, I become extremely self-conscious with regards to my writing style. Though, I suppose it is a good thing that I am so critical of my own work, it makes it easier to take criticism from others. I loved receiving feedback from my directors when I was working on my thesis, it took all the pressure off me for a bit. Ack, wish I had such dedicated reviewers now.

the stack calls me

The time has come when, despite the best of intentions, the end of the semester has caught up with me. Just a few more edits and some finishing touches, and I can finally take a break from classwork. Though, this semester has definitely given me some food for thought… I’m seriously considering specializing in cataloging and metadata. I always knew I wanted to go for the more digital aspects of librarianship (I’m a web geek after all), but I have gotten really into the idea of cataloging information. And thinking about folksonomies and how information is described online has sparked my interest even further. I’ve never spent so much time thinking about how the tags I use might lead a user to find relevant information (especially on my book blog).

work and play

School has ended for the semester, so I am taking advantage of the lull to work on my Book Drum profile and get back to writing. These holidays always pass very quickly, but it seems so different now that I’m not a traditional student. Just a year ago, I graduated with my MA, but starting a distance-learning program just six months after has led to a very different sort of learning experience. It’s interesting and I have to admit that I do enjoy the independance it allows me; in many ways, it seems like an independent study program.

In between all the writing and research (funny, I never thought I would return to a subject that I spent so many months working on for my thesis), I’ve been watching “Lark Rise to Candleford” and loving it almost as much as I loved “Cranford” last year. Small town dramas have always been especially charming to me and this one is no exception. My b-chan finds it amusing that I am so into period pieces and shojo anime, he’s never met anyone who is so into “girly” shows.

in which i bite off more than i can chew…maybe

I sometimes think I must be an A type after all… why else would I be so eager to take on so many “self-satisfying” (more like self-tormenting) personal projects? Because I am glutton for attention, I think. Well, not really. I think I’m just filling the writing gap. Aside from The Project that Shall Not Be Named, but Does Have a Name, I am regularly posting on the book blog, working on library school stuffs, and occasionally taking part in books discussions on Ning. I also recently signed up to be a historical fiction reviewer for the Historical Novel Society‘s online publication; I am waiting to receive my first review book. And today, I joined Book Drum.

Maybe, I’m just a compulsive writer? I’m sure some would agree with this self-analysis.

On a tangential note… why is it so hard for me to write to writers? It’s almost as nerve-wracking as writing to professors.

alive and kicking

This has been quite a week… Classes started, so it was back to the stress of driving, planning, teaching (in that order… unless you know Miami traffic, you do not know how stressful it can truly be). Sometimes I think I took on more than I can actually manage this semester, but I’m persistent… I’ll make it work.

I also just realized what 92 pages worth of writing looks like–my thesis took on a life of its own at some point, this is much more than I ever planned to write.

buzzing around

Am keeping busy busy busy. My boss and my friend tell me that the footie kids love me… I just thought they were forced to sign up for my sessions because my hours are more convenient and fit in nicely with their practice schedules. Kind of reassuring to know that they’re saying good things about me when they meet with my boss to discuss their progress. It’s always interesting to discuss student writing, you learn so much about the writer, especially when they have to write personal response essays. It’s almost like a character study. Although, this is probably a sign that I’ve been too immersed in studying literary characters…

Speaking of literary characters, the thesis is starting to look like a proper book. No more worries about passing the minimum page requirement, I reached 50 pages long ago and kept going. 80 is looking more and more likely. 80 was my original goal… 100 is the max… I may have to cut if I keep producing such long chapters.

It’s such a new feeling having all these responsibilities. I took over our student organization (it was something of a lark, I didn’t really think no one else would offer to do it), so I’ve been creating budgets and planning events and dates, meeting with the director, making phonecalls to offices all around campus, and generally doing leader type things. Never thought I’d end up in a leadership position, but there it is.

another one bites the dust

It’s been a long day, but I haven’t been this wide awake and excited in weeks… I just “finished” what will be the third chapter of my thesis. Of course, it won’t be finished until it’s been read, edited, read, edited countless times, but I feel much more confident about this one than I felt about the last one (which wasn’t awful, it just didn’t turn out the way I wanted). I actually managed to stick to my self-imposed deadline, despite the week that I lost because of the mystery pains and the headachy madness. I start at the new job this week, so I need to be able to continue sticking to my deadlines if I plan to finish the first draft of the manuscript by August 😡

losing my drive

I tend to do things on impulse… like restarting this blog. I thought about it, then I thought, ‘Why not? Might as well set it up sooner than later, if I’m going to do it.’ So when I get it in my head to do something, I do it. However, I have to do it straight through. I can’t start something and then take a break from it. That only makes me lose my drive.

Now, I have a thesis to write. I told myself I would write a chapter a month. I would start and stick to it, or I’d end up taking longer than necessary to finish this thing. I gave myself deadlines. I planned things out. I structured the entire process (at least on my end, the rest is up to my committee). The only problem is that this weekend threw me off my schedule. I can multi-task, but there are some things that require my full attention. Writing is one of those. I was distracted. I told myself I needed a break and I would still have enough time to finish my first chapter by the 19th if I started again on Monday. That didn’t happen–starting again on Monday, I mean. Another little snag occurred and I ended up spending my day running around campus getting forms signed and tracking down books in the library (books that are missing!! People, return your books after you are done using them. Just a courtesy.). Now, I can’t remember where I was going with my draft. I was making some sort of transition from one point to another, and I can’t remember what exactly that point was. I’ll figure it out, but the lazy daze has set in.