Final Countdown

My apologies to anyone who is getting tired of hearing about the Northern California book, but I’m so close to finishing I can almost taste it. Tastes like cookies.

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I have twelve pages to go. If it were any other kind of writing I could bust out 12 (first draft) pages in an afternoon (if properly motivated). But this is such research intensive stuff that it’s really slow going. What’s more, as I get near the end, the topics are harder and harder. I’m being forced to tackle the pages I knew would be difficult to write.

Twelve pages. I think I’ll shoot for four a day starting now. Don’t care how late I have to stay up. I can finish this baby by Wednesday night. (I’m ignoring rewrites for the time being. I deal with those later.)

So excuse me, I need to get back to work now.

Back To It

December was pretty much a wash. Between travel and holidays with family, I did very little writing. My 100 days of writing challenge kind of went out the window. I only wrote six pages in the Northern California book

all month (and all six I wrote in one furious day of writing when Daniel took the kids because I was freaking out about how little writing I was getting done).

Now it’s January 2 and we’re back to our usual routines. I have 22 pages left in the Northern California book, and I’m determined to write them before January is over. It seems like a very reasonable goal. I’m still working on the rest of my goals for the year. More on that soon. For now, I’m just going to focus on finishing this one project. The sooner the better. Then I’ll figure out what I’m going to spend the rest of the year working on.

So there it is. Twenty-two pages. Here goes…

Day 49

Today is day 49 of the 100 days of writing challenge.

The goal I set for myself was to write one page in my Northern California guide book

every day. I have missed 10 days, and written 39 pages. That’s almost an 80% success rate. That’s a low B. In school a low B would have bothered me, but you know, I’m feeling pretty good about this one. Because it’s not like life has stopped so that I could work on this goal. In fact, just yesterday I turned in a 5300 word feature article that I’d been working on for a month. Not to mention other freelance work that has come and gone in the same time frame. Hello low B, don’t you look lovely.

51 days to go and 43 more pages to write (the book is designed to be 100 pages long, and I already had 18 pages when I started this 100 day challenge). So technically I can still blow off 8 days between now and the end of the year and still make my goal of finishing the draft. I can pretty much guarantee that those days will fall around Thanksgiving and Christmas. In fact, if I’m actually revising my goal – I will write AT LEAST one page a day, but on days when I don’t have much else going on I will write more. Because man it would be nice to wrap this baby up before Christmas. That would feel gooooooood.

The one thing I haven’t figured out yet is how I will reward myself if I actually meet my goal. On the chart where I cross off my successful days I’ve written “celebrate!” at the bottom, but I don’t know yet what that means. I’m thinking about maybe taking myself to the Korean Spa on Olympic, or maybe a new dress or something. Any ideas out there? How do you reward yourselves for goals well met? Let’s get creative here.

100 Days of Writing – Day 31

Well I’m officially a month into the 100 Days Of Writing Challenge

. I’ve missed four days, for a grand total of 27 successful days. My goal was to write one page a day on the Northern California book I’m working on for Eye Muse Books . The book is set to have 100 pages, and I had 18 when I started, so I’m at 45 – almost half way done.

The first week was easy, the second was okay, but now, four weeks in, I’m realizing how very hard it is to sustain a write-every-day habit. It’s amazing how easily a day can slip by. Some days I’m just being lazy (on Saturday we babysat a friend’s little one so she and her husband could go to a wedding, and having one more kid around the house was the perfect excuse to bail on work), and other days I’m actually using the time for other work (yesterday I spent the time working on a proposal for a new client).

So while I haven’t been perfect, I think a 87% success rate over 31 days is pretty good. Last year I only made it to day 12.

The thing I’m afraid of is that it isn’t going to get any easier. Family is coming to town this weekend, and soon the holidays will be here. My husband’s birthday is coming up and our little guy will be turning one on December 10th! I can’t believe it. I will likely miss more days ahead, but I’m going to keep trying. I will keep getting back on this horse, no matter how many times it bucks me off. I really want to finish this book before the end of the year. It would just feel good.

100 Days of Writing – Off to a great start!

Week one of the 100 days of writing challenge

was a complete success! For seven days I wrote one page a day for my book about Northern California. I think I chose my challenge well. Even with everything else going on in my life, I can totally handle one page a day.

So I’m 7 pages closer to done. Only 74 pages to go.

Making the commitment to spend time on this project in particular was also a good decision. I love it. Every day I learn new things I didn’t know about the northern half of this state. For instance: Highway 49, which runs north/south along the Sierra Nevada foothills, is named after the miners who worked that whole area for gold in 1849 (and were often referred to as the 49ers, long before the football team adopted the name). How had I never put that one together before?

And did you know that great white sharks only really troll the northern California coast between August and December? A recent study shows that from January to July they convene in the deep waters off the coast of Hawaii for a sort of pelagic key party.

Or how about this one: in 1949 Marilyn Monroe was Artichoke Queen at the Castroville Artichoke festival.

I thought I knew a lot about Northern California. I was wrong.

If your interested, you can follow my Twitter feed – I’ll be posting a lot of Nor Cal trivia over the next few months, I’m sure.

F Weebly

I wrote a nice long post this morning about how I’m taking on the 100 days of writing challenge, and now, for some reason Weebly has deleted it. Bah. I’m getting really sick of Weebly, I’ll tell you whaaaat. 

Anyhow, don’t have time to rewrite just now. I’ll catch up on Monday, right after I talk to my favorite web designer about transferring my blog to a new format. Thinking WordPress.