Tag Archives: Blog Hop

Writing Wednesdays- Part II- The Projects Strike Back

Hey, hey, hey, Dark Dreamers,

This week has been extremely productive in this author’s world, just not quite in the way I meant. I have several hobbies that I pursue passionately. Writing of dark, urban fantasy and all things that go bump or bite in the night is obviously one. I love it, but not my only love. This week I have had to focus on another pursuit just as dear to my heart.

Martial Arts

Recently I have gotten back into martial arts, Korean styles. And by me, I mean I have, my writer-husband, JP Sloan, and my son has been in it for a while. My husband and I have had to play catch up and have been under scrutiny to determine where we fall in our abilities. This week we earned our green belts. We couldn’t be more excited.

Bring on the Fight Scenes

Bring on the Fight Scenes

Piggybacking on this, we decided we needed a more dedicated practice space. So all of last weekend was dedicated to organizing and redoing our basement to create a dojo space just for us. As a good New Orleans girl, basements still freak me out. I expect the water to rush in at any moment. But I after 10 years, I have to admit the extra space is really nice. It was a lot of work, but so, so worth it. No we have everything that the basement held before in one area up on shelving. On the other, larger end, we have a full dojo complete with mats, mirrors, artwork and an amazing heavy bag we get to hit around whenever we want. So without further ado, the fruits of my labor.

Oh, the fun to be had here

Oh, the fun to be had here

Lastly, yes, I did some writing as well. I wrote just over 10k words this week. That is one the low end of my weekly goal, but I hope to do better this coming week when I can dedicate more time to writing. And for those of you who has been bugging me to have Rowan in a relationship, there may or may not have been a first kiss. You’ll just have to wait for book two to find out with whom.

In geeky gaming terms, my writing did gain a new feat this week. My husband reads some of my work when I torture him with it, I mean, ask him to. Now, you have to know something about my husband. He does not feel or show emotion for anything. Everything that makes everyone on the face of this planet have feels, he simply goes “eh”. I have teased him about this for over eleven years. Last night I gave him just a couple of paragraphs to read. The feels nearly killed him. This accomplishment I feel needs to go down in the chronicles of my writing. I’m not sure it will ever happen again.

So, there was my week. For next week I want to up my word count to at least 15k. I also want to fill out the author interviews I have been asked to do and schedule my author photos. I hate all photos, and I’m scared of these most of all, but they have to be done. So that’s my plan.

Now, go check out my fellow writers’ updates as well. The list of those on this Writing Wednesdays Blog Hop are below.

  1. Jessica Gunn
  2. Emma Adams
  3. Suzanne Van Rooyen
  4. Ann Anderson Noser
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Wife, Mother…Writer?

Yep, I’m all three. On a good day, the three meld into this gorgeous dance of inspiration and productivity. On a bad day, they crash into a glass of wine.

Here's to a more sane tomorrow or the apocalypse, either ends the hell that was today.

Here’s to a more sane tomorrow or the apocalypse, either ends the hell that was today.

Many friends and colleagues have asked me how I manage all three, and I wish there was some great sage wisdom I could impart to enlighten the masses and stamp on a tee-shirt. So far, the best I’ve got is “Hold on, it’s gonna be a bumpy ride.” I make it work by sheer force of will and an unhealthy dose of insomnia. But that doesn’t get things done. To get things done, I’ve had to utilize some very unsexy skills like extreme time management and using my wait time. These two plans have given me far more writing time than I could otherwise get. Adding the fact that my husband J.P. Sloan is also a worker by day and writer by night, we have double trouble with time management allowing us time to write. We both have to schedule time to write, usually right after our 7 year old goes to bed around 8-8:30. It is even how I’m writing this blog post right now. Scheduling a “working writing time” not only makes sure we can get it done without trying to hit the “I’m too tired button” in our lives, but also helps train our brains that during this time our writing brain needs to be active. I’d heard that from authors before, but didn’t really believe it until I started using it. Our brains feel like they actively switch to a different mode and the words flow much easier. But that only gives an hour or so a day; far from the time needed to be a real writer on a large scale.

So in my busy wife, mother, teacher life, my writing time also has to use that under-utilized section of everyone’s schedule called “wait time”. Wait times are those points in our day when we know we can’t travel to do anything else and we know we are just going to have to sit there and do nothing. This could be in-between two meetings or classes. Or my personal favorite, the doctor/dentist office. As we all know, when we go to the doctor they always see us immediately. NOT. We have to wait and wait, often for much longer than we would like. Usually the only options during this wait time is to watch their interoffice TV, stare at the cracks in the wall or read three year old magazines, again. But we know this time is coming. If we plan for it we can use it to get stuff done and thus free up time for later. So, when I look at my schedule and realize there’s some wait time in my day, I make sure my book stuff is with me and bang out a word count. Now I’m less frustrated with the wait and have time to spend with my family later and not feel guilty.

But guilt and family time are two big obstacles in the busy writing momma’s life. I need to make sure my son is feeling loved and supported. I need to be there for his events and celebrate and grow with him. I am not willing to sacrifice my son and family to my writing, not very PC and Woman’s lib, but there it is. But I’m also finding a balance and a pride from my writing as well. Especially as I watch my son. My guilt has eased as I watch him take more and more interest in writing and writing well from watching his father and I work. He is only in second grade but has already won two writing contests for his age group and school. For his martial arts belt tests he has to write an essay at each level and each time his is singled out for praise. He sees our dedication and love of writing, and instead of resenting it, he wants to work on his writing as well. He is already hoping to be published one day and working to that end.

And that came from balancing being a wife, mother and writer. It is not only my manuscripts that benefit from my dedication, but my son as well. Keeping this going takes a lot of effort, but each smile and success keeps me going and keeps the fight worth it.

So no great sage advice here. Just a reminder that we influence those little ones. It is not just about giving or taking time, but also showing them when actions are worth more. For them we walk the tight rope every day. If we show them cord, they may just decide to walk it with us.

If you want to read from other authors on balancing parenthood and writing, find them on Sharon Bayliss’s Blog Hop below.

1.

Sharon Bayliss

2.

Balancing Act

3.

James Wymore

4.

Amy Bearce, On the Journey Blog

5.

Clare Dugmore Writes

6.

Missy Shelton Belote, Author

7.

J. P. Sloan’s Fistful of Fiction

8.

Black Cat Blog

9.

Jessika Fleck, Writer

10.

Courtney Sloan’s Dark Draftings

11.

Julie Coulter Bellon

12.

Katie’s Stories

13.

Kids, Writing, and Why I Quit Sleeping

14.

Eliza Tilton

15.

Andrea Berthot, YA Author

16.

Kate Foster, Writer

17.

The Unspeakable Horror of the Literary Life

18.

Kimberly Ito – Author of Fiction

19.

Kristen Terrette, Smiling in the Chaos

20.

Kimber Leigh Wheaton

21.

Vicki Keire Writes

22.

Jennifer Tressen

23.

Live, Love, Laugh

24.

Christine Rains

25.

Shelli Proffitt Howells – A*Musings

26.

Alex Taylor – Author

27.

Treefall Writing