17 October 2012

Planning time

Most people who know me would probably get a good laugh out of the thought that I'd be planning much of anything more than 5 minutes in advance - I'm a hopeless procrastinator and frankly tend to work better under pressure anyway.  However, that really only works for mental projects - term papers, for example (let's not talk about the time my printer decided to stop talking to my laptop at 4:30 AM, okay?).  When it comes to anything physical, twenty-odd years of playing stringed instruments and about a decade of off-and-on distance running have taught me that cramming just doesn't work.  The body is much slower than the brain - while I can memorize 20 Latin vocab words in a minute or three, it takes me weeks to add a couple of miles to my running stamina.  Oh, and then there's the whole I'm-broke-and-so-I'm-making-everyone's-holiday-presents thing I've been doing for the past few years - I may be able to design a pair of socks on my lunch break, but it can take a month to actually knit the darn things.

So, against my own inner nature and kicking and screaming all the way, I'm actually considering planning something else right now (it must be because I've finally turned the heel on the socks).  That would be a novel, of course, since hey, it's almost November and that means NaNoWriMo is coming!  Despite the fact that I've done four WriMos (and "won" three of  'em), I've never actually done one in November when everyone else does - Thanksgiving is my favourite holiday, and then once I picked up the bookstore job, well, holiday shopping hell, anyone?  So it's a busy month, to put it mildly.  But see, I got this idea...

But in order to have even the teeniest chance of pounding out 50,000 words amidst feasting, recital planning, Black Friday and any number of other distractions, I'm going to need a plan.  A good solid plan that doesn't have too many holes (rabbit, black or otherwise) for me to fall into and get lost down for untold aeons, but not so strict that I feel stifled by it and don't feel like I can take a tangent to Terceira if someone feels like going over there all of a sudden (yeah, that was a hint on the topic).  At the moment, I just have a plan to make a plan.  And as far as I'm concerned, that's a good start.

05 October 2012


In addition to being the most annoying question toddlers ask (I've got a stack of nephews, so I'm pretty sure it's the worst one), it's also an interesting idea as pertains to this blog - namely, why I'm still posting on here when nobody else is and nobody's reading it, either.  I guess it has to do with the fact that I'm a terrible lazyarse, and if I don't have something scheduled and expected, it often doesn't happen.  So these silly posts that I'm hurling into the endless internet ether are my way of ensuring that I'm writing SOMETHING, on some kind of schedule.

They may not be terrible profound posts - in fact, I'm bordering on the banal here - but it's still me fulfilling what I see as an obligation, and stringing together a bunch of words in an intelligible (if not always intelligent) order.  I see how some of my students and even coworkers are incapable of producing properly formatted written content, and I gnash my teeth and fear for printed communication.  And I'm determined not to devolve into textspeak and abbreviations at inappropriate times - hell, I've been known to use semi-colons when texting, and not just in winking emoticons, either.

So there.  That's why I'm still churning out a few handfuls of words, every ten days or so, whether anyone is paying attention or not.  And here I am explaining it to that invisible audience.  Could be worse.