Wednesday, January 2, 2013


I'd love to start working on my Mermaid novel again.

I really would. But I have two syllabi to finish... and they need to be finished NOW. Class starts Monday for one, Tuesday for the other.

My little devil voices have been whispering... "Why not just get part of it planned, and then you can plan out the rest as you go?"

I'm no fool. I haven't been teaching 20 years for nothing. If I don't plan it out now, I'll be scrambling mid-semester to get it done, and then I'll have papers that need grading, other projects pending, and God only knows what else.

You see, the syllabi seem like hurdles right now... and they sort of are... but they are self-imposed. I could do what the voices say, but I'd be putting off more planning, starting the semester without a crystal clear idea of where the semester will end up, setting myself up for panic later.

And I don't like panic.

Same with novel writing. Only once have I written a whole draft of a novel without planning it out meticulously. And my next "revision" of that novel will mean scrapping 75% of it, minimum. It means more work for me in the long run, not less.

That's why I plan. And that's why I'm off to finish those &%*#(@ syllabi, to save myself a world of time later.

Anything you're in the midst of planning?

Tuesday, January 1, 2013

I Resolve Nothing

I make resolutions every freaking year.

By the time the end of the years rolls around, I can't even remember what they were. No, really, I can't. And nothing ever seems to change. I watched the ball drop last night (it doesn't get less lame with time, I'm afraid), and then the year 2013 popped up on the screen.

I looked at the hubby, and he looked at me. He shook his head, reading my thoughts the way I read his. "It looks like an ugly number, doesn't it?"

I nodded. I normally love the number 13, but the flashing year numeral looked wrong on the screen--garish, mistyped, overblown, or something--and I took a step back. The hubby disappeared, and I found him moments later in the other room, away from the crowd, just sitting and looking at his knees.

A few minutes later we drove home. And now it's morning, the day looks normal, and I have a list of work things to get done before the week ends. This list reminds me of daily tasks, ones that simply MUST get done, and they leave no room for long-term resolutions.

So, for the first time in God knows how long, I'm not making any year-long goals. I'm going to take today, do what I can with it, and do the same thing tomorrow. That's it. No lofty guilt-inducing goals to become a runway model, save the world, find a cure for cancer, or write fifteen books.

I'm just going to face each day, one by one, and make the most of living in the moment.

Be blessed this year, everyone. For those of you who have made resolutions, I hope your daily behaviors get you there, and you meet your goals. For those too caught up in turmoil to handle what you have now, may you find calm and peace enough to balance out your lives a bit more.

For those of you who truly believe you can change the world for the better this year, I send all my good karma and wish you all the success in the world. But only today is promised to me, so...