Recapping, Writing, and a Little Rambling

Have TWO weeks really passed since I’ve blogged? That’s like half a month. Wow.

Last week was one of those weeks where you’re so swamped in things to do that you have to pick and choose. Sadly, that meant blogging got the boot for the week. That was bad (for me, at least). But what’s good is that I didn’t suffocate under the pile of school assignments I was buried beneath. It’s always nice when you live to see another school week.

Today, I’m sitting in Panera, drinking tea, and blogging. My world is once again restored to how it should be. Fall is here, and I’m resisting the temptation of a pumpkin pie muffin. I’m a huge fan of pumpkin stuff (already had two pumpkin spice lattes this year), but I’m also a huge fan of my favorite pair of jeans. And my favorite pair of jeans kind of hate me right now. You know how that goes.

The last time I blogged, we dealt with some pretty heavy stuff. Whenever I do one of those posts about something that deeply affects me, I need to sit back and just ponder it for a while, so that’s what I spent time doing last week while I wasn’t blogging. Or writing a research paper. Or creating some really spiffy charts for Environmental Biology. Or writing a poem for my poetry workshop class.

Speaking of poetry, come back on Thursday to read about my experiences in that class. Sadly, I don’t have a list of tips to help you write good poems, but I’ve nevertheless got some stuff to say about it.

If there’s one thing I’ve been learning this semester, it’s that life is about more than college. My schooling is just one small season of my life, and God’s got plans for me whether I’m struggling to comprehend the French feminist movement (seriously) or not. I’ve come a long way from the high school days of making a B on a test and feeling like my life is over. I still have some pretty strong perfectionist tendencies, but I’m learning to channel them. I do my best, I strive to glorify God in all I do, I move on, and I remember my GPA doesn’t define me. That’s hard to swallow sometimes, but that’s what I’m learning.

I’ve also been learning how to make time for writing. In the past, I’ve completely shoved my writing into a corner of my mind so I could focus on homework, but that’s not possible for me anymore, no matter how hard I try. Because when I avoid writing for a while, I get kind of cranky. Combine that with late nights of studying and lots of caffeine, and the results? You don’t even want to know.

So last Friday night, I reunited with the first draft of my novel. It had been so long, y’all. So very, very long. Close to two months, in fact. I loved getting a chance to curl up with a hard copy (Yay for leftover school printing funds!) and read it like it was the first time. Obviously, I already knew the story inside-out, but our time apart gave me some perspective and I was able to look at it in a new way.

(You may or may not be able to take some relationship advice from the previous statement…)

Anyway, I experienced many mixed emotions while reading it. Everything from, “WHAT was I thinking?!” to, “That’s actually not too terrible.” It was a broad spectrum for sure. There were times when I wanted to rip up a page and times when I wanted to reread parts over and over. Strangely enough, there were also times when I honestly wondered if something I read actually came out of my brain. Example: My main character is quippy. I wish I could come up with half of the things she says when I talk to people, but I can’t. I’m not as funny as she is. Someone figure that out for me…

So I‘m working on draft two now. In a perfect world without homework or exams, I could probably knock it out in a couple of weeks, but I’m a junior in college, so we’ll aim for Christmas. I also need to figure out what to do about a character who played a pretty sizable role in progressing the plot, but then apparently dropped off the face of the earth before we learned why she was being such a snot. Somehow, I don’t think spontaneous alien abduction will fly, so I’m still working on that.

I’m also making progress on my next work, which I’m writing as part of the “100 for 100 Challenge” on a writing blog I’m a member of (there’s a link to that on the right-hand sidebar). I’ve got to write at least a hundred words every day for 100 days. Even though I’m still planning out major parts of the story, the challenge is keeping me moving. It’s also going to keep me researching. The other day, I told my sister Abby that she could help me research the 5 stages of grief. Her excitement didn’t exactly match mine.

So that’s been my life for the past couple of weeks. There will probably come another time in the not-so-distant future when I’ll have to take another blogging break, but I sure hope not.

This time of year is so exciting and I want to be able to document all of the little things God is doing in my life.

In His love,

Anna

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3 thoughts on “Recapping, Writing, and a Little Rambling

  1. So happy you’re working on that awesomely amazing story (it is the one you entered the beginning for on GTW, right?)!!

    I’m doing the 100 for 100 too, and right about now I’m writing stuff that I’m sure is going to get cut out in revision. I’m a little stuck…wah :(

    One of the things I love about writing is you can go back later and add that perfect thing to say in. Instead of smacking yourself and going, “Ack! Why didn’t I think of that before?!” you can just add it in :) That’s so awesome…!

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    • Thanks! Yes, it’s the one from the GTW contest! At the moment, I’m actually liking the 2nd half of the story better than the first, which I really can’t figure out. Maybe it’s because I had a better sense of direction by the time I passed the half-way point. But we’ll see…

      I completely hear you about the 100 for 100 thing! Originally, when I finished my other piece, I told myself I’d carefully plan my next story out (my first one was a lot of create-as-you-go). But then, not even a day later, the 100 for 100 started and I jumped right in! I’m kind of wandering around in the story still, but I’m thinking I’ll at least be able to get a few solid scenes out of it by the time we’re finished.

      One of the best things about the challenge is it’s making me move forward and remember I can always change it later. So often, I want to get it just right the first time. So I think it’s definitely good for me to just. keep. going. ;)

      Good luck with your story! Maybe before long you’ll get that wonderful lightening bolt of inspiration and it’ll be a lot easier for you! :)
      -Anna

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      • Exactly, exactly, exactly!! I write the same way–I edit without even noticing it. :D This is really making me turn off that internal editor, which is a good thing to learn :)

        My last book I liked the second half of a lot better, too. Odd is right, but I think your idea is right xD We have it more figured out by the second half.

        Thanks! I hope I get that lightening bolt; I had only gotten the first chapter and very little planning of this WIP done before the 100 for 100 started.

        Good luck with your revising and your story!

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