Posts Tagged With: blogging

Hi-ROW, Hi-ROW, It’s Off to Work We Go

ROW80 Check In 5/2/12

Lemur BoxingThese last two weeks have been pretty decent. I felt a little lost when I didn’t check in last week but I think I’ll adjust to an every other week check in quickly. In fact, I think the longer-term planning will help me both relax and up my productivity.

Where I’ve been since last check-in:

  • Update ROW80 page: Yep.
  • Open Scrivener file for Postcards (working title) novella and layout storyboard: *ahem* Not yet. But I have written tons of notes and outline points longhand. Continue reading
Categories: ROW80 Check Ins | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | 5 Comments

Thus Spake the Dragon: How Useful is Speech Recognition Software for Writers/Bloggers?

*The awesome Sherry Isaac is at the Life List Club blog, talking about creating goals that really motivate us. Head on over and join in the conversation*


[keyboard cat | ORIGINAL]Some time ago, I heard about using speech recognition software for writing. One author (unfortunately, I can’t remember which one) was able to dictate thousands of words daily in less than half the time it would take to type them and without the associated strain on the hands and wrists. Although it sounded impressive, I was skeptical. The software, Dragon NaturallySpeaking, was not especially cheap and there were no free trial offers (I know, I’m a great big cheapo). There was an app, Dragon Dictation, available for free but I found it difficult and slow to use (or maybe I’m just slow and difficult). So, I shelved the idea for a while.

Fast-forward about a year and I found myself drowning in writing. I was working on my MIP, blogging, commenting and replying to comments on blogs and doing the social media tango. On a day when the words were really flowing or when the blog/social media scene was hopping, I found myself typing out a prodigious number words… and my hands, wrists, neck and back were not thanking me. Continue reading

Categories: Tuesday Toss-Up | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | 32 Comments

The ROWpocalypse is Nigh

ROW80 Check In 4/18/12

At long last, I’m jumping into ROW80 Round 2. I had planned to jump in at the start and have my ROW80 page all updated. Well…the best laid plans of mice and writers and all that.

Buuuut, none of that matters.

That’s the beauty of ROW80.

Squint at theeTremble in fear, mighty ROW, for I have come to conquer thee.

Without further delay, here are my plans for this round:

  • Update ROW80 page, for last round *blush* and this one.
  • Spend 15-30 minutes minimum 4 days a week on new novella. I’m working on expanding Postcards from Hell and its sequel, Ants in the Mailbox into a novella. My MIP is on hold for now.
  • Maintain blogging schedule. Try to have all posts schedule by the night before the posting day at the latest. All posts should go out by 4:30am CA time.
  • Visit Twitter 1-2 times daily
  • Visit Facebook at least 6 times/week
  • Continue to take Sundays off with the family
  • Read at least 2 fiction novels per month.
  • Exercise 3 days per week.
  • Reorganize Blog Menu in light of the changes to blogging schedule.
  • Revamp post tags.

Where I’m headed this week:

  • Update ROW80 page.
  • Open Scrivener file for Postcards (working title) novella and layout storyboard.
  • Keep up social media goals.
  • Start Suzanne Collins’s Mockingjay.

This is gonna be a great round, fellow ROWers. Can you feel it?

Get out your digital pom-poms and rah-rah some more ROW folk here.

What’s on your list for this round of ROW80? If you’re not a ROWer yet, what goals will you be working on for the next month or two? How’s all the goal-getting going so far?

Image Attribution (In Order of Appearance):
Squint at thee by Tomi Tapio, on Flickr CC BY 2.0

Categories: ROW80 Check Ins | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | 12 Comments

Sherry Isaac is Posting at the Life List Club Blog!

Our brand-new Life List Club blog is up and running with the very first post by Sherry Isaac. She’s talking about life, lists and clubs. Come on by and say hello.

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When I Have More Time and Other Lies We Tell Ourselves

Procrastination. One of my biggest weaknesses. The sweet siren song of “later…I’ll do it…later” calls to me across the great expanse of my to-do list. Does it call to you too?

Here is a piece I wrote for the delightful Pam Hawley one Life List Club Friday. If you’ve ever been seduced by the demon Procrastination or if you know someone who has…or if you’re one of those organized types and just want to point and laugh at us procrastinators, keep reading…

*originally posted at Pam Hawley’s blog on 10/7/11*

When I Have More Time and Other Lies We Tell Ourselves

How many times have you said the following things to yourself?

“I’ll start that diet…tomorrow.”

“I’ll take one of those writing classes after the holiday hubbub settles down.”

 “I’ll try that Twitter thing when I’m not so busy at work.”

“I’ll lay my plans for world domination when the kids get a little older and don’t need me so much.”

“I’ll start/finish writing my novel when I have more time.”

If you’re like me, the count is somewhere around…well, you figured you’d count it up later and then forgot.

I know, I know. You have 542,367,895,129 to do in a day.

Like Spinning Plates

Adding one more thing, especially if it’s not for your day job or your home or your family, feels like it might just bring everything crashing down.

Plates

So we tell ourselves we’ll do it when we have just a little more time. But that’s a big fat LIE. Say it with me, “Liar liar pants on fire.” Because there will never be a little more time. And, if there is just a smidge more time, something else will come along and fill it up.

You know it’s true.

And day after day sneaks past us like ninja kittens until we are left looking back at a long span of years, scratching our heads and wondering how all that time went by without us pursuing our passions. Ahhhhhhh

Believe me, I know how it goes. I’m Queen of Later.

Bow down before me, all you procrastinators, or feel my wrath. Mwahahahaha. Um, what? Oh…really? Ok. Sorry. Back to the topic…

Seriously though, procrastination is one of my biggest weaknesses. Email piles up until my inbox is begging for mercy. Laundry piles up until we’re desperately washing tiny loads just to have underwear and jeans to wear. My exercise machine grows a fur coat of dust, my reading list grows and my outline languishes.

It’s so easy to put stuff off, especially if it has to do with writing. And especially when the writing gets hard. I tell myself I’ll just do it later. I promise this time.

But since we all know there probably won’t be a later or a little more time, we have to carve out time right now. Because the demon Procrastinator lurks around every corner and behind every dust bunny.

 Lego Joker

But, um, how do we go about this exactly? How do we smite the Evil Procrastinator?

Here’s some things that work for me:

  • Make a list of goals and pick some folks to keep you accountableLife List Club and ROW80 are awesome ways to put your goals out there and find a cheering/keep-you-in-line section.
  • Start small – If the big goal make you feel like you’re standing at the bottom of Mt Everest, try making tiny daily or weekly goals. It’s easy to build on them and develop a sense of trust in yourself. I’m all about the baby steps. But, if you’re motivated by big goals, set big goals to challenge yourself.
  • Get up early – I am so not a morning person. But, if I don’t wake up at least an hour before everyone else in the house gets up, it’s a huge challenge to get any writing done. Or you could stay up really late instead.
  • Schedule reminders on your phone – Schedule daily writing times and program your phone’s calendar to remind you twice. Really pester yourself.
  • Plan, plan, plan and list – It’s weird, I love to make lists but I used to hate making a daily schedule or an outline. I wanted to be spontaneous with my creative work and just go with the flow…except the flow usually led to nothing much getting done. So now I plan and plot and list. Plus, it’s fun to tick everything off my list.
  • Visualize yourself succeeding and taking joy in every step.
  • Leave yourself notes everywhere reminding you of your goals and cheering yourself on.
  • Cut back on time-sucks – There’s almost always more play in our daily schedules than we realize. We putter around, watch tv, surf the net, etc. At least some of those things can go so we have more time to pursue our dreams.
  • Give yourself permission to take a break – It’s easy to get overwhelmed. Cut back on your goal schedule or take a break. Just be sure to set specific goals for those cutback and breaks too so the goals don’t get abandoned.

So, even though it’s still a bit of a struggle for me, I’m learning to work around my wicked procrastinating ways. And, by all that is caffeinated, I will get my novel written (and the email read, the laundry done, the weight lost…)!

Do you put off your dreams? Procrastinate on your goals? How do you conquer that procrastination?

Image Attribution (In Order of Appearance):
Like Spinning Plates by Jameson42, on Flickr CC BY-NC-SA 2.0
Plates by mallix, on Flickr CC BY-NC-ND 2.0
Ahhhhhhh by kennymatic, on Flickr CC BY 2.0
Lego Joker by Adam Crowe, on Flickr CC BY-NC-SA 2.0

Categories: Tuesday Toss-Up | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | 31 Comments

The Milestones are Partying Again

Put on your party hats, it’s time for another Life List Club Milestone Party!

Our old friend Larry the bartender is here again.

 Canon 550d - Snail on Fork

He’s always here. It’s almost sad really. The guy’s workaholic. But at least he enjoys his job. And this time he’s offered to be the chef too. Continue reading

Categories: Life List Club | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | 29 Comments

How To Build A Zombie

Zombies. What are they really? Magically animated corpses or victims of a mutated virus that reanimates the dead or drives the living to become monsters.

 Zombie Pose Spidey…spidey-senses…mrmph…brainz…

In a recent post, Rafael of Neither Here nor There pointed out that zombies just don’t work, as least not from a “realistic” explanation point of view. There’s too much suspension of disbelief required to buy the virus-infection origin of the zombie. A supernatural origin, on the other hand, would be believable. Continue reading

Categories: Killer Thursdays | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | 41 Comments

Exploring the House: Mark Z. Danielewski’s House of Leaves

Welcome to Killer Thursdays, where everything goes bump in the night…

*Winners for author Jay Squire‘s giveaway are announced at the bottom*

At long last, I have procured a copy of Mark Z. Danielewski’s House of Leaves[1]. I was hesitant to read it for two reasons. Yeah, I know it’s been out for a good long while[2] and I’m kinda late to the party. Continue reading

Categories: Killer Thursdays | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | 11 Comments

Happy Haunting!

It’s that time of year again.

You know what I’m talking about. Pumpkins, candy, assorted monsters taking off their human skin and walking around as they really are, extorting the neighborhoods for treats…

…and hauntings. We cannot forget the hauntings. Continue reading

Categories: Uncategorized | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

Ants in the Mailbox – Postcards from Hell, Part 2 (a 500-word story)

My friend, the lovely historical fiction writer Haley Whitehall, issued a flash fiction challenge in the horror genre and this time it involves a prize! The contest runs until 10/31/11, so there’s still time to enter. My entry is Part 2 of a story I wrote for BeKindRewrite’s Inspiration Monday IX. You can find Part 1, Postcards from Hell here.

And now…

Ants in the Mailbox

US Mail
They stood at the edge of the front lawn gone almost knee-high with weeds. The figure in the filthy postal uniform lay still on sidewalk.

Steve looked right. Left. Nothing else moved anywhere on the street.

Deanna squeezed the stock of her crossbow. “He really dead? Dead-dead?” Continue reading

Categories: Killer Thursdays | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | 16 Comments

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