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I recently came across a writer who uses her blog for personal thoughts and musings. She writes a weekly recap to share what she’s been reading and working on. I loved the idea, so I decided to start a weekly recap too.
That’s What’s Up will be my weekly recap. Simultaneously, it will also create some accountability as I will now have to “report out” on my doings so here goes:
That's What's Up - Feb. 5, 2018
Writing-Part 1: I think I am about half way through my creative writing class. It’s been fun and interesting. Since I have about zero technical knowledge about writing, just about everything I learn is new: which is awesome! The one thing our teacher keeps saying is “Just keep writing…” and it’s also the one thing I’m having the hardest time doing (see Writing-Part 2). Also, whenever my instructors says “Just keep writing” I think of Dory, from Finding Nemo singing “Just keep swimming…”
House Hunting: Last week we looked at three more houses with our agents and went to an Open House on our own. The first two houses seemed good on paper but didn’t quite fit our needs once we got inside and saw the layout. The Open House home had great potential so we went back the next day to take a second look with our agent. The house was quirky and ALMOST fit the bill. But as they say, almost only counts in hand grenades and horseshoes… so here we are…
Cooking in My Kitchen: We began Veguary (vegetarian February) on February 1. Veguary is our very unscientific study of what happens to our pocketbooks and our bodies when we stop eating meat for a month. Our goal for Veguary is to eat more plants. Often times when people stop eating meat, the meat just gets replaced with carbs and cheese. As a result, we are trying to be diligent about using plants as replacements for grain-based carbs e.g. zoodles instead of pasta noodles and limiting our dairy intake. Don’t ask me about protein. There are tons of resources out there about no meat protein.
Writing-Part 2: In the 80s (or some galaxy far away) Mattel created a Barbie doll that said “Math is hard,” or some such thing and it was totally sexist and inappropriate. However, if they created a Barbie and Ken doll that said “Writing is hard,” when you pull the string, that doll would be totally accurate. Writing is hard, y’all. And I don’t mean just the clever piecing of words together to form ideas, but all of it, like the whole process.
Last week, our landlords were having some much-needed work done on our place. The end product is great but there were people sawing, drilling, or installing something in our house 6 out of the 7 days last week. All of this commotion simultaneously excited and angered our dog. Yay new person! Bark! WTF is that drilling sound? Bark! Here comes that dubious mail man! Bark! What’s that banging in the other room? Bark! Why aren’t you playing with me? Bark! You get the point… there was a LOT of barking last week. By Saturday I was at my breaking point; I had not written anything in over a week.
My writing teacher encourages us to write for a minimum of 15 minutes every day and between my part-time job, the house hunting, and the barking, I couldn’t find a moment’s downtime to write one word. The fact that I can’t write creatively in the absence of the right environment makes writing an extraordinarily difficult task. Finding the time, the environment, and the creative energy to write is challenging. All those things have to come together at the right time. Now that I have chosen to pursue writing more seriously, I’m amazed by how many books we have in the world. Writing is hard, y’all. Believe that.
What I am Reading: The only real New Year’s Resolution I made was to read more fiction. Of course, shortly after New Year’s a non-fiction book I have been working on became available again at the library. Determined to finish it, despite the fact that it’s nonfiction, I’m still reading it. It’s also now overdue at the library and I am collecting fines as I write this. I’m going to try to finish How to Fail at Everything and Still Win Big by the end of the week. It’s a good read and I’ve already learned a lot. (Book review forthcoming.) I also read this awesome article in the NY times about the Jamaican Synchronized Swimming Team (Yay JA!). I’m also reading a lot about search engine optimization, digital marketing through Instagram, and nuclear waste in Denver suburbs. (Yes, you read that right… nuclear waste when we are trying to buy a house and build a garden and raise chickens… SMH.)