Today's ROW80 check-in brought to you from a couple of my favorite sci-fi shows and as much humor as I can grab to help me settle my whirling thoughts. (Bonus points if you read that subject line in "Bones" McCoy's voice.)
In today's check-in reminder post, Kait asks if we lost our stride over the long holiday weekend. My stride? Maybe. I thought it was my mind that went missing. I suspect this happens to a lot of writers when they are starting a new project, trying to fit it in with everything else already on the table. There's not enough time! Or maybe there's just not enough organization?
Right now, I am feeling anxious and behind. I think it's actually leftovers from having a lot to do in a short time over the weekend. That and leftovers from being really anxious about sharing my work with my new writers' group. But my first story is shared with them, even though it wasn't the story I originally thought I'd be sharing, so things are good.
When I took a look at all of my notes and partial stories for Division Zero, I didn't have enough time to pull anything together that would be sharable even as a first draft. So I shared a story set in the same made-up city, a story that I actually want to get into shape and submit. So I shared something I wrote last year rather than anything newer, but it was a real share, not just any old piece of writing just to have something to send to the group.
Still, all that trying to pull things together in a short time during a really busy weekend has left me unable to settle down. I have to breathe and remind myself that everything is okay. Everything I needed to do got done, and the only thing I'm a little behind on is Inner Excavation, and I plan to give myself some time to play with that tonight and tomorrow. The anxiety is really an after-effect, and it would be awesome if it would go away.
It's funny. I used to have confidence in my writing. I was shy and uncertain about a lot of things, but I knew I was a good writer. In February, 1993 I walked into a room full of other writers, about fifteen of us all told, and I read a first draft story to them with no hesitation. I did tell them up front that it was a first draft, but I wasn't scared to share my work. Last night (okay, since Sunday night), getting ready to finally send off a story to my new group, I was an anxious, jittery wreck.
Maybe the difference is that back in 1993 I was in school for a post-grad teaching certification in English. I had recently taken a short story writing class and was doing a lot of writing for school. Maybe my confidence came from all the positive feedback I always got in school and workshops. Maybe I am anxious because I've been away from sharing my work with anyone for almost a decade (I did share a few first-draft short stories last year, but not with specific in-person acquaintences and not with the intention of getting feedback).
It feels good to be sharing my work with a group again. Uncomfortable right now, but that's at least in part because I don't handle change very well. But I can feel that once I get into the rhythm of this every-other-week group and have it as a regular part of my life, my writing is going to soar. I'm excited. Scared that they will think my work is awful, but really excited to be making this real, concrete commitment to my writing.
Okay, on the the check-in details:
- Fiction Writing--I got a lot done since Sunday. I got a lot of my Division Zero notes together, rearranged the order of some of the stories, got two-line character sketches done for all of my people, revamped and outlined the first story in the series. I also re-formatted a story from last year and got that sent to my writers' group.
- Row80 Blogs--I've been checking in on my assigned numbers, but this week I didn't get to any extras.
- Creative+Practice--continuing this daily and still finding that I look forward to it and am pretty easily making sure to fit it in each day. It's a great way to do a little something creative and also get my jumbled thoughts a little bit in order as I do the daily journaling.
- Inner Excavation--I am behind on this. This is Week 3, and I am still in the beginnings of Week 2. I hereby give myself permission to just do some writing for Week 2, skip the visual art portion for now, and move on.
- #Wordmongering--I haven't done any this week yet. I plan to get in on it tomorrow (tonight I'm giving to my Inner Excavation work)
- Yoga--Continuing a three-day-a-week practice. Some of the poses are still pretty hard, but I can feel a few of them getting a little easier as my muscles get stronger, so this is good. I am not really noticing any pain relief yet, but it's only been about a month.
- Walking--Nothing to report here as my intention is to do a short walk on the weekends and sadly it isn't the weekend yet.