Monday, January 7, 2013

Goals for Row80: Keeping It Simple

It's amazing. I spent the first half of the day completely enthused at the prospect of writing this blog. I had notes upon notes of all the fantastic goals I would set forth, all the magnificent things I would accomplish in my first Row80 endeavor. There would be words! Words upon words! My stalled novel would take flight, my poetry progress, piles of draft pages coalesce into brilliance. My journal would enjoy a steadier patronage and my life would, for once, resolve itself into the picturesque, my life finally that of a real writer.

By the time work let out, I was tired and hungry and the blogging enthusiasm had waned somewhat.  So I made my dinner and vegged with the TV for a while in the hopes that a good meal and some mental down-time would re-ignite the passion.

Instead, I found myself withdrawing from the thought.  What was I thinking?  A writing challenge?  Who am I kidding?  I can barely muster the ambition to cook after a full day's I'm going to write too?  What's wrong with my usual habit of picking at my journal twice a week and sprinting through a couple pages of my latest novel endeavor for my critique group every odd weekend?

It's sad when I think about much I've allowed life and laziness to shift my writing to the corners of my life, those odd little spaces where nothing else fits. 

I've been stalled on my main novel idea for years, writing at it in fits and starts, troubled by stray plot devices and runaway ideas.  I have started a half dozen new projects partly, I believe, in an effort to avoid having to work out the knots I built into that first unfinished novel.

This is not where I wanted to be as a writer.  My fingers itch.  My mind is full.

So, tired or not, enthused or not, I'm making the pledge to do this.

I want writing to be a part of my life, a regular part of it.

So I'm writing this blog to mark down some goals.  Is it the same list I jotted down this morning on a piece of scrap paper?  Hardly.  I'm not sure I'd survive a week on that least not yet.

Baby steps.

And so, the list, revised, reduced and ready to go:

1.  I will average 250 words per day 7 days a week - Fiction.

2.  At least 3 days of the 7 will focus on my stalled novel.

3.  I will make at least 4 entries into my journal per week.

4.  I will read for at least 10 minutes before bed every night.

This is my pledge.  And, as per the rules of the challenge, I will check back in with you (you being that nebulous term for anyone reading this, for the world at large and for my own conscience) on Wednesdays and Sundays with my progress.


  1. I sympathise with you! I have a similar curse, also being exhausted when I get home from work and flitting between projects becasue I can't sort out the knots in existing ones.
    Good luck breaking through the plot tangles. And finding time to write every day. It's not the word count I find hard but finsing the time.

    You can download a calender at the link below which has 365 days on one page. It helps me to put a big red cross on everyday I've managed to write something!

  2. Glad to know I'm not alone! And thanks for the link...I'm printing it out now so I can mark off day 1! :-D