Wednesday, October 25, 2017

What can happen in a year: Making an endgame.

With the end so near at hand, and with so few pieces left on the board, the execution of the final blows becomes the focus. For me, in my writing year, it feels good to know how the end gets played out before I start. The endgame, happening in the waning weeks of the year, must be the most productive, the most efficient and the final cadences of all projects.

However, it is only October. It is, of course, the end of October. So, that said, there are two months left in the year. Two months. But let's consider the two months that we have: November and December. The holidays, heavy at the end of November and December tend to get away from me, from everyone I suspect. So, I've always considered December a loss for getting work done and I have always used those halcyon days of winter to plan the upcoming year. And November? November for me has generally be the month to tie up all projects for the year.

Wednesday, October 18, 2017

What can happen in a year: Milestones

I can divide a year up in so many ways. I can do it seasonally, but here in Colorado, there really aren't seasons like there are in other places. Sometimes the spring feels like winter and sometimes there are warm days in January when the sun feels near and the air is almost alive. But the seasons, at least in theory come at least four times a year. I like February here. In February the light and length of day changes drastically from the beginning to the end of the month.

Likewise, I can divide up the year by my Umbrella Factory Magazine schedule. We publish quarterly, and so in a way, the magazine's annual schedule is really an extension of the seasons. I know that I feel very differently in the spring than the other seasons and I am wistful in the fall. These feelings influence what I choose for the magazine, and they influence what I write.

I could divide the year up by month. I don't. I don't divide the year up weekly either, although it would make sense if I consider how much I love small easily attainable tasks.

Wednesday, October 11, 2017

What can happen in a year. Part two: Working

I overheard a conversation today between two young women. I say young women, but I would imagine the two of them nearing 30. Anyhow, two women much younger than me. One said to the other “Can't you multitask?” and the second said, “Of course.” I tried my best to keep a straight face and make it seem like I wasn't listening.

Multitask? I don't even know what that means.

Wednesday, October 4, 2017

What can happen in a year. Part one: Setting goals

I think the best thing a writer can do is to set up a list of goals. I know a list of goals seems like it would be enough, but it isn't. To add to the list of goals, I think a writer needs to set up a timeline complete with dead lines. For instance, my list of goals was: 10 publications, one new novel manuscript and a new group of short stories. What this meant for me, simply, two manuscript length pieces and any number of publications. But if I just said that that was what I wanted to do and gave it no time limit, I may be working on it for the rest of my life. I set these goals to be accomplished in 2017, from January to December.