Creating and Cats

Writing — well, pretty much doing anything around the house — with two young cats prowling around and constantly getting under foot and demanding attention can be a bit tricky. Cali and Jules have been with us for a good couple of months now and they’ve been a lovely addition to our home and the biggest distraction ever. (Sometimes enforced distraction when one of us needs to get work done and the other needs to take over catsitting duties.) It’s a matter of taking it as it comes and squeezing whatever time we can to do it all.

During my evening writing sessions I’ll use one of the stick toys to get one of them away from A’s knitting and yarn stash, and eventually they’ll forget that A has all that enticing and chewable yarn in the other room. Jules is a little easier to sway, as she’s more chill about everything and will end up napping on the cat bed I have here in Spare Oom. Cali is a bit harder to deal with, but eventually I’ll get her to calm down as well. Giving them the nightly bowl of kibble also helps. We’re hoping they’ll become a bit less chaotic as they grow older, but for now we’ll need to keep them occupied when and how we can.

In the meantime, as I write this Jules is in the Spare Oom cat bed and Cali is most likely in the cat tree in the living room. That gives us a bit of personal time to get work done. It might not always be a lot of time, but it’s time enough for now.

Carving Out Time

girl who leapt through time
Source: The Girl Who Leapt Through Time

I’ve been thinking about time lately.  Well — part of it is due to my work on In My Blue World, but also because I’ve been running all over the place lately, trying to squeeze in as much as I can into a short amount of time during the day.  If I look at my social calendar it starts looking far too busy, but if I take it day by day, it’s a little easier to work with.

I’m also doing my best to ensure that I carve out enough time to work on my writing projects at some point during the day.  As long as I get a little bit done, then I can rest easy.  Right now I’m working with two mini-sessions a day:  one during the afternoon break of the Day Job, and the other in the evening.  I write my blog entries a few days ahead of time and schedule them.  I’m also prepping ahead of time by at least having a general idea of what I’m going to write before those writing sessions start.

Carving out time to write is one of the most important things I must do as a writer, and I do whatever I can to make it happen.  Even if it’s a half hour where I’m working out story issues.  [I call these ‘blathering’ sessions, but what I’m really doing is voicing what might be bothering me, working out the kinks and rethinking my approach.  These too are essential, because I’ll have a much clearer head for the next prose writing session.]  As long as I’m going in the right direction, that’s all that matters.

Carving out time to write when the days are busy can be hard to do, but it can be done if you dedicate yourself to it.  It might be getting up a half hour earlier, it might be closing down those social media browsers for a while, or it might even be longhand during your commute.  Whatever works, go for it.  Find an hour, write those five hundred words, and try to do it as many times a week as you can.

Because all that short work adds up to a larger finished project.

Still Editing, Still Busy

image
No, really, I’m getting stuff done! Honest!

Hey there, everyone!  Lots of movement here in Spare Oom.  The Day Job has been keeping me busy, though I’ve been sneaking a few minutes here and there to edit.

At this point, it looks like the release of The Persistence of Memories will more than likely be end of March rather than February…I do apologize for the delay, but this edit run is taking a bit longer than expected.  I’m still about a quarter of the way through, but I’m making good headway.  I’m giving myself a bit more of a buffer so I can do the formatting and the cover, and so I can release both the e-book and the physical version at the same time.

I’ll have more to blog about my editing processes to date, but that will be after everything is done.  Yay, future blog posts!  And thank you for your patience, as always!  I promise, it’ll be worth the wait.  This one’s still my favorite of the three.

But seriously, I’ve been taking extra steps to make sure I get all this work done on time and with minimal distraction.  I’m still utilizing the habit of closing down all web browsers when I’m not using them for something important (like checking my word choice against the Merriam-Webster website).  I’m even doing this during the day when I’m editing during slow moments, as you can see from the above picture.  Making good on my plan to scale back on my internet usage in general has worked out just fine.  I’m more productive and less distracted.*   Once I post this, I’ll be closing down the browsers again.

* – Okay, I may have returned to my FreeCell playing habits, but the trade-off is worth it.  A five-minute game is a lot better than a half hour of Twitter.

Oh — and if you’re curious, here’s the wallpaper I currently have.  I took this out Spare Oom window with my nice camera during a rather spectacular sunset late last year.

End of the day, 8 October 2015
End of the day, 8 October 2015