Monday, March 1, 2010

A stream is more direct than mist

Science was never my thing. I very much respect well-rounded people who can write beautifully about things scientific... but that's not me. So, I don't feel bad that I didn't get this very simple rule of fluid dynamics until now. Mist puts lots of water in lots of directions, but a stream flows further and faster. No disrespect to the Olympic Peninsula rain forest that thrives on constant mist, but, for where I am, I need to write in a stream, which means that I'm putting my energy & writing in one direction.

So I'm streamlining my focus: my YA novel (+ launching the website for the nonprofit I've founded to make films for LGBTQ youth). The middle grade novel is still there waiting it's turn, as is YA novel number two. But this week at least, I'm going to see how things go with four hours of YA work + four hours of website launch work. With a swim or workout between them.

This reminds me a little bit of a way past writing partner who came up with all sorts of elaborate rules to make him write (including moving abroad), but nothing really helped. He just needed to write. Anyway, I'm going to try this 4 + 4 approach for a little bit.

Any suggestions for streamlining & keeping at it?

My iPhone went nuts this week, so no photos from a walk. Here's an older one from the porch of our temporary condo. The tree is now blooming.

Monday Meeting: Goals for the week of 3/1/10:

YA novel
  • New draft incorporating reader feedback
  • Finish all web content
  • Tech plan for launch
Strengthening the center
  • Meditate every morning
  • Two walks in nature


  1. Robert, good luck with your week! I sometimes do a similar division when I'm working on two things. Right now I'm sticking with one.

  2. I like the 4X4 plan, with a workout in between. Hm...I may have to try that. Also, I am stealing your Monday Meeting format.

    As for advice...I think you've got the ideas, just keep to them and don't become frustrated when the river changes flow.

  3. Yes, Jonathon's advice is the only one I got. Flexibility within rigidity. I make rules for myself all the time and they work for awhile and then they don't. So I have to try and go with the flow. But committing to the work sounds good and in fact Heather seems like she has thrown the gauntlet.

  4. Robert--I like your focus this week. I'm sure you will get a lot accomplished. I need to just have a time block planned out to write (and only write). The mornings (thanks to Tina) have been working out fantastically, and impromptu "unpluggings" with Jon and Tina in the middle of the day is a wonderful thing--and hour where we just work on writing and come back to compare notes afterwards. And, the burst of enthusiasm from receiving an award from a good blogging friend helps the production of words as well. (Thanks Paul!) And, last but not least, skyping with a writing partner helps me get really enthused about getting writing done! :)

    Sorry about the rambling comment--many children spinning around me like a cyclone right now!

  5. (two of those children were Tina and me.)

  6. Today, Tues, is my 1st 4+4 day, so I'll see how it goes. (Mon is my weekend: yesterday took a ferry to San Juan Island & biked around - I love boats!!!)

    Paul - best of luck sticking w/one thing.

    Jon - not becoming frustrated when the river changes flow... that's the big thing & not my forte. (BTW we know how Heather loves ALL her kids.)

    Tina - Flexibility within rigidity. I love the phrase.

    Heather - as usual, I'm amazed at how much you do AND raise a fantastic family. Is it strange that I also think of you as the den mother of a cool blogging network of writers?

  7. Welcome Elizabeth Spann Craig! And, wow, your blog MYSTERY WRITING IS MURDER is a killer resource!

  8. Welcome Sarah Warren! - is Floots blog yours?

  9. Hi! I'm back again, leaving another comment since I'm ready for your next post, and it probably won't happen until Monday. Just thinking about you and hoping that the week went as planned, or better than planned, because sometimes our own plan isn't the best one for us. And--we walked Walden today. I might post you some pictures on my blog soon...

  10. Okay. Lots of Kelly kids at Walden pictures on the blog today. I'm absolutely SHAMELESS.