Friday, January 25, 2013

Writing Life

Last time I discussed my writing, I was moaning about how overwhelmed I felt about editing.

Well, this past week I stopped whining and consulted my expert researcher Ms/Mr Google - s/he is an hermaphrodite- and discovered a nifty book called Self Editing for Fiction Writers by Renni Browne and Dave King. This book is so on fire that it impacted my writing before I even received it. How do I mean? Well, I read an excerpt of the first chapter online and realized what was wrong with my own first chapter right away. In a word -well several words- I was explaining too much and not letting the characters live. I was giving all kinds of background and history and what not. A whole lot of info that had me saying in my nephew's voice: "who cares?"

I guess the avid reader in me knew the problem all along, but the writer in me resisted deleting a single word. I mean those words were agonized over and carefully chosen by committee. I was loathe to let even one of them go. But I eventually did just that and the story reads a bit better. So I am happy. And less overwhelmed and even excited.

I forgot I was working today and had planned to walk up into the mountains and write until dark but alas, the job that pays the bills takes precedence over my creative pursuits. Thankfully, it is a dreary rainy day so I will settle for cleaning my house.

Friday, January 18, 2013

Writing Life

Haven't really been writing much, despite my resolution and despite my desires.

I did finally read all the way through my first draft of The Cheat Reflex (tentative title). It wasn't as cringe inducing as I thought it was. It is ironic to me that the first few sections which I had already edited and had worked on for several months before the challenge were actually worse than the unedited words that I wrote during the NaNoWriMo challenge. Those latter words felt more ... livelier. I guess because those words were coming straight out, and had eluded the great internal editor!

I don't know.

Anyway, the hard work is now ahead of me. Of course I am trying to avoid it by reading about the process instead of being about the process. Sigh.

Meanwhile, I have to get my act together. My thought life is neglected, I really have to work hard this year on destroying my addiction to the gossip blogs. I have too little time and I must be very stingy with it. But, it's hard though because those gossip blogs are so seductive, short and sweet to read unlike maybe editing or studying or any of those good for me things I should be doing.

God deliver me sha.

Wednesday, January 16, 2013

Run with you

I have been trying to keep to my goals for the new year.

As far as exercising and looking better and loving my hair by taking better care of it, i am good. As far as writing and blogging and non emotional eating, am not. I keep making excuses and finding reasons not to get on the ball. I need deliverance.

This week I started a couch to 5K training program. I did my second little jog yesterday despite the bitter cold. I bundled up like I was going to be in subzero weather. I had on three sweatshirts, two tshirts, my hat, my hoodie, two pair of sweatpants, two socks, gloves. lol. i hate cold! and it is cold up in these mountains.

But it's beautiful to exercise up here, and it's challenging to go up and down the little hills so I am not complaining. I love going uphill, and I love coming downhill as the sun is rising over the city. So pretty. Keep trying to capture it but it is hard to snap a pix when you are trying to walk/jog as fast as you possibly can.

Of course I made a playlist to get me through the pain, a mix of gospel and secular music. It's a work in progress because I find myself sometimes skipping through the tracks in the midst of the workout (this is how i break my devices...just saying).

My current motivational song is La Negra Tiene Tumbao by Celia Cruz. When I hear that song, I get new wind especially if I am going uphill.

Then there is Lara George's song which is also the title of this post:

Brighter day by Kirk Franklin always has me forgetting that I am Yemisi writer, and has me acting like a choir director complete with hand gestures, I even throw in a dance here and there. I love this song, even after 11+ years.

Lastly, there is Pretty Girl Swag by Ciara. It reminds me of why I am out here in the bitter cold in the first place.

Hmm, all these songs are very old. Need an update!

Friday, January 04, 2013

2013 already!

I can't believe my last post was in November.

Despite my good intentions, December was a wasteland in terms of my writing and life goals. I moved to my new apartment, came down with the flu or rather an influenza like illness, and have just been so blah. The cold weather is not helping either. I really cannot stand the cold, it tends to sap my energy.

As always, I have a few goals for the new year. I already feel all kinds of stressed because it is already Janaury 4th and I haven't made any moves. I did do one half hearted workout the other day but it was bitter cold. I could actually feel the cold going through my hoodie, my t-shirt, my skin, my bones and grabbing my heart and lungs and squeezing them to death.  I scurried back home and vowed to buy some winter gear. Total mileage 1.6 miles. Yeah pitiful.

My goals this year are simple:

1. Get with God and just delight myself in Him. Ps 37:5. I want to be serious about my walk with God this year. I promised myself last month that I was going to attend three bible studies at three different churches. I have always liked bible studies more than actual church services because you get to discuss and you get to know people better. I already attend the one at my church - RCCG Living Word on Montana, Tuesdays at 7pm. It's very intimate and fun.

I went to a young adult fellowship at Destiny Family Christian Center in early December, I liked it so I decided to add their bible study to my rota: it's not as intimate, but I like it a lot. I am also excited about the Young adult Fellowship which takes place two Fridays a month.

 Lastly, the mother of one of my patients has been inviting me to her church. She has such a sweet spirit and I saw that their bible study was on Thursday so I was like yeah! I finally went yesterday, in the snow and all and it was an awesome experience. It's a Spanish speaking church but the pastor preached in Spanish and English. I realized that I could understand most but not all of the spanish, (i only know the present tense lol). Nevertheless, I am going back to that as well.

2. Last year, I was deep in debt and obsessed with getting out of it as quickly as possible. This year, I am determined to start saving with that same obsession.

3. My hair, my poor neglected hair! The great thing is that shea butter is my friend. It has greatly simplified my routine big time, added bonus, it stretches my hair like nothing. But I digress. I need to stop being a slacker about washing the poor thing, and moisturizing and protecting my ends. I am so tempted to get a weave but then that would be incompatible with goal 4.

4. Lose my last twenty pounds. December was a very bad month. Very bad! I ate out almost every day, and I ate just once a day. It was bad! Bad! Did I mention that it was bad? Anyway, I am trying to be better. I made spaghetti squash the other day. It was good! Almost like the real thing. I think it was because my sauce was divine. It was simple really. Roast the spaghetti squash in the oven for about an hour. Scoop it out, and watch it miraculously become spaghetti strands. The sauce I made consisted of half a purple onion, two cloves of garlic, two roma tomatoes chopped and sauteed in a skillet with a bit of olive oil and seasoned with basil, black pepper and a dash of salt. Lovely.

5. Lastly, overhaul my wardrobe, except I don't want to spend a single dollar! But I need to really let my beauty shine. I promised myself that on my birthday and it's time to keep that promise. Watch out world.

6. Oops. See I am already leaving it off the list. Write more, write more, write more. I joined a 1000 word challenge #DailyK put on by author Christopher Courtley. In fact, it is why I finally decided to get my act together and write a blog post today. I also need to edit my novel. I read it last night and I was like this sucks! This really just sucks! I want to scrap it but I will commit to editing it and making it less sucky this year. I need to do research for this novel so I must find a way to visit Nigeria this year for more than  5 days. God make a way for oh and God please send the sun, thank you kindly.

So please to my one faithful reader, I urge you to poke and prod me when you see me going off the tracks.  Thank you very much in advance.

Happy 2013!