As Yet Unsorted

Writing to get where I hope to be.


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Prompting Focus

I’m still waiting for possible work from the temp agency. They emailed me a call center job last week, but I know that I am not cut out for that — I’ve done it before, and was miserable, and horrible at it — so I didn’t respond. I did apply to two part-time positions list on their site this week, but haven’t heard anything yet.

In the meantime, while I’m waiting, I’m writing, or trying to. I’m not developing pitches at the moment, but instead am opening a notebook and writing from prompts. Sometimes I only go a page, sometimes a few. A couple have been personal, non-fiction musings about whatever comes into my head when I read the prompt, but most have been fragments of the same story, experiences of the same character. I don’t know where it’s going yet, or even what it’s really about, but I’m enjoying seeing how things are developing so far.

I’m using prompts right now, because that’s about the only way I’m able to get myself to focus enough to get anything down, unless I’m writing a letter or note to a specific person, in which case I am focused on the recipient. I know I’ll end up getting temp work eventually, but in the meantime I am finding myself a little scattered, and the not hearing back from editors in response to pitches got demoralizing enough that I’ve set that aside until I can get a better sense of where to go with that.

The prompts allow me to get words down and fill pages, and I don’t think what I’m coming up with is all bad, though for now I’m not rereading much. It allows me to have some sense of forward motion, and I’m not worried about whether it is tied to earning a living. I still need to be able to do that again, and soon, but it’s becoming clear that, for me, at least for the time being, the reliance on words to keep a roof over my head causes them to scurry into the cracks in the woodwork. I’d like to find a way for that not to be the case, but in the meantime, I’d rather be able to write at all, even if that means finding other work to pay the bills.

I still need to write more than I am, and to get less distracted by practically anything, but I am glad to see the pages beginning to fill again, and to see a character and a story begin to take on a more concrete shape across these pages. It feels as though it’s been too long coming.

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Groundhog Day (Again?)

So, somehow it’s already February, Groundhog Day, to be precise. Both of Pennsylvania’s furry prognosticators have predicted an early Spring, which I can get behind, even though the thought of the year whizzing by even faster than it is already seems a little daunting. No matter what the rodents say, we are smack in the middle of winter, doldrums and all.

Because I have a tendency to be dragged down by the chill and the dark (even as they are both receding) this time of year, I have set myself two tasks for February: A Month of Letters and renewing my gratitude list practice on Facebook, but purely in visual form.

Once upon a time, not so very long ago, I wrote letters regularly, and I miss the habit. I have done the letter month before, and am looking forward to doing it again, with the hope that it gets me back in the swing of writing letters and sending postcards more frequently throughout the year (if you’d like me to mail you something this month, let me know). Full disclosure: I sent something yesterday, but did not get today’s letter into the mail before I came home, so will be sending two things tomorrow.

Gratitude lists are something I’ve been doing on Facebook on and off for a few years now, and people seem to appreciate them. I fell out of the habit in November, and this is probably the longest I’ve gone without posting them for a while. Occasionally, I’ll post one composed of photos I’ve taken with my phone over the course of the day. A couple of weeks ago, I decided that I’d start up again in February, and only use photos for the month. I’d like to say I’ll do them daily, but I’m not entirely sure whether I’ll manage that, but I’ll shoot for as close as possible.

Those are my plans, aside from the day-to-day activities, to make this shortest month — that can sometimes seems the longest — into a time of reflection and paying attention to details. What about you? Are you doing anything to combat winter doldrums, now that we’ve reached the hinge of the season?