Getting Out Of My Own Way

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In years past, Holidailies was described as a “solemn vow” to blog daily during the month of December. I see that the blurb has relaxed a bit this year. Good. Because my solemn vow–while I blog daily–is to not let blogging get in the way of my usual goals.

So why do Holidailies if it feels like an obstacle to more important tasks? In short, because I know good things will come from it. If you don’t believe me, check out this beautiful post from one of my years’ long blogging buddies who has agreed to join in the fun: Risk. Did you read it? Aren’t you glad you did? I can’t wait until I have time to post a thoughtful response. Holidailies prompts us inspire each other. I love that.

Here are my priorities in addition to blogging today (and most days–minus #3 and swapping out the author & title of #5):

1. Walk off the stuffing and bread that I ate every day last weekend.

My newest friends may not know that in the summer of 2001, I weighed 176 pounds. From August to December of that year, I was a religious weight watcher who, by January, “hit goal” as they say, and went “lifetime” on schedule at about 127 pounds. I kept off all the weight for several years, but have since begun adding poundage slowly. I’m still well below the former top weight. And I fucking intend to keep it that way. Probably should not plan on subsisting on GRAINS AND SUGAR again this week. And most importantly, I need to move.

2. Devote hours to my awesome bookkeeping clients. 

3. Therapy appointment.

A lot of people wouldn’t list that publicly. I don’t feel any shame about tending to my mental health. These days, the appointment often feels like too much of an interruption in my work schedule. That’s probably a good sign, right?

4. Writing class homework. 

Two essays to read, three classmates’ stories to critique, and a writing exercise. I’m so grateful to be studying at UCLA Extension. Actively learning about writing pleases me more than anything else in life lately. Our teacher’s expertise has more than exceeded my expectations. I view every story I encounter (in literature, TV, and film) differently because of what she has taught me.

5. Read another short story from Amy Bloom’s Come To Me

This collection is so compelling, I haven’t stopped to take notes the way I need to. I used to treat reading like a leisure activity. Now I realize it’s a non-negotioable part of my workload as a writer. The way I enjoy it shows me that I’ve chosen the right profession.

6. Write. 

I have several short story works-in-progress on my plate. Here’s a trite image: I keep imagining myself in a tunnel swinging a pickax at a hard wall. Only instead of steady swinging, I sit down on the job too much of the time. I need to pick one spot and keep swinging for five consecutive days in a row each week. I can’t let up on myself just because there’s no paycheck involved at the end of the week.

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Fellow Holidailies Participants: How do you make time to blog? Why is Holidailies important to you?

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4 thoughts on “Getting Out Of My Own Way

  1. The past two days, it has been the last thing I do before bed (blog, that is) and I am sort of digging it. I find that I am too tired to censor myself or go back and tweak sentances after publishing (something I’ve done a lot in the past!) — so, it’s a good experiment. I’m glad I’m doing it.

  2. I have to admit, once I decided I was going to do Holidailies again, I cranked out about a week’s worth of entries and uploaded them as drafts. All I have to do now is hit publish and copy/paste the link on the Holidailies website. On my off days I plan on writing two or three entries a day and doing the same thing.

    The hour after I get up is probably my best ‘computer ME time’ so that’s when I blog if I have something on my mind.

  3. Since I knew Holidailies was coming up, I took a small blog break. I also began brainstorming and wrote some draft posts to get a head start. I just have to go clean them up a bit and they are ready to go on days when I lack writing material!

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