Well, i've had my month off after the challenge on WriMo and given my fingers a rest (outside of work and regular e-mail, at least). I can't say the time off has brought any great revelations, but at least the prospect of returning to my novel and the blog isn't terribly overwhelming.
Speaking of WriMo, a few years back those at the office of letters and light decided to challenge NaNo participants to challenge themselves with a list of big, fun and/or scary things they wanted to accomplish in the coming year. Both as a way to re-energize after a month off and as a possible way to motivate those who needed it after such a month. I myself am always wanting for motivation, at least when it comes to activities that don't involve playing silly video games whilst eating terrible junk food, and am taking that challenge myself.
So, without further ado I give you my own personal Big, Fun and Scary Adventure!
1) 211 IN 2011!!! Yes, that's right- I hereby swear to write no less than 211 blog entries for the year!
I thought about going for the official blog a day challenge, especially given a friend's recent success with completing a picture a day for her blog. But then I thought 'what if work sucks my soul out that day?' and 'what if i'm really sick and can't get out of bed?' and 'what if I just really, REALLY don't want to write that day?' I'd like to say that no excuse is valid but i've let far less real reasons prevent me from getting on the keyboard in the past so I didn't want to set myself up for failure. So, 211. I will still have to write very frequently (at minimum 4 times a week and then some) but if I miss a day here and there I won't fail. I figure it's a hell of a lot better than I've done thus far and it may prove to be a good warm up to daily bloging. We'll see.
Oh, and for those of you interested in seeing more flash fiction I promise that MANY of those 211 days will be Fridays!
2) I WILL GET A BETTER JOB! This is far more important to me than to you but it affects all of us in that me getting out of my current soul sucking position could (and should) lead to a happier Bev. A happier Bev may well be a more creative Bev. A more creative Bev will most certainly be a writing Bev. See?
Now, ideally, I will use my new "What Color is Your Parachute?" and whatnot books to find a new job in a new field. But even if I just end up with something different as I figure it out, that's what i''m counting on. Don't know where i'll end up, not making any guesses- just know that i'm getting out of my current shit hole and into something better.
3) I WILL FINISH MY NOVEL. That's right, you heard me: finish it! I left Factin's Story collecting virtual dust on my hard drive despite the knowledge that there was far more of the story to be told. I will not do that to this year's novel. I will finish it. No idea how long it will ultimately end up being, no idea how long the process will take, and no idea when I will begin the long and arduous process of revising the monster- BUT I WILL! As it pertains to writing in general I will certainly discuss my progress from time to time and may even post excerpts. I have no definitive plans so far as that goes. I just know that I demand that I finish the story before NaNoWriMo 2011- and I will!
4) I WILL TRAIN, TEST AND BE AWARDED 2nd DAN IN TUNG SOO DO! For those of you who don't know me, I take karate. I received my first Dan (first degree in layman's terms) in 2009 and will be testing for 2nd Dan in June of 2011. 2nd Dan, needless to say, will be that much harder than first Dan was. Which means I must train that much harder to succeed. This is my challenge to actually run, do the push ups, strengthen the muscles, perfect the breaks and generally prepare for the biggest physical challenge I've yet pursued. I hereby promise that I will push myself. And I will train. And I will test. And I will earn my 2nd Dan!
5) I WILL GROW. This probably sounds pretty vague and it is. Without going into any details this year has been a source of seemingly never-ending challenges (not good ones like these) and it has left me operating at less than my best for quite some time. I understand that the coming year will undoubtedly throw some more challenges my way. Ones that, like those of this year, I don't expect, I don't want and don't know if I can handle. I know that. But my challenge is to not fight it but to accept the things I encounter as more challenges to face up to and surpass. More opportunities to improve rather than tests of will. More arenas where I can become a better person rather than slipping back into the same old negative habits. I have nothing against messing up. I have nothing against messing up BIG, even. All I want is to mess up differently and better than I have in the past. To use the new schemas I'm forming to navigate with a few less bumps and a tiny bit more grace. I'm sure that sounds like a tall order and it is- but I'm not asking for perfection. I'm simply asking for improvement. I know what that is for me, and I will be the judge. But growth.
Wish me luck!
(and keep reading...)