Thursday, November 3, 2011

Albert Einstein, Wet Noodles and Kick Butt Advice

I've wavered back and forth about just how honest I wanted to be in today's post. In the end I decided a little public humiliation was okay if I helped someone else on their writing journey.

Let me tell you a bit about my trip to Tulsa with Ruth and Mary.

Day 1.: I opened my eyes and peeked into a dark room at 6:30 am. We went to bed around midnight so sleeping in until 6:30 seemed reasonable. The room was silent. I rolled over for a few more zzzz's so as not to wake my roommates. Thirty minutes later I decided I was getting up anyhow. What I discovered is that they were gone.

Apparently they'd been gone...for hours. Being, productive.

This scenario was repeated the next morning.

Let's review.

While on vacation, Ruthy hung out in the business office in the wee hours and wrote a gazzillion words a day (did I mention while on VACATION?) and Mary wrote a novella in the bathroom waiting for the flat iron to heat up.

What did I accomplish in Tulsa? Well, I ate fried pickles, cherry lime-aides, and pizza.

And I realized it was time for me to dust off my framed Albert E photo again.

On occasion we all need a little kick butt in areas of our life just to get us back on track. Don't get me wrong, I've had a good year. I applied the Albert E. Theory to my health and lost 70 pounds and lowered my cholesterol by numerous points.

But I've been floundering in my writing productivity. I could give you excuses, but I won't, and I won't let you go down that road either.

The bottom line is, if what you're doing isn't working or isn't producing the results you want then it's time to STOP. Do something else. ANYTHING ELSE.

By the way, the moral of this story isn't for me to become a Ruthy or Mary clone.But hanging with Curly and Larry made me realize they had developed a plan that worked and they were sticking to it come Tulsa or high water.

So I'm rethinking my boundaries, the hours in my day and the best use of my time. Do you know how difficult it is to kick yourself in the butt?

Today, I've invited a few friends to share their kick butt words of writing wisdom for all you aspiring authors in the Seekerville audience:

"The only time you fail is if you quit. The only sure way to get published is to write and submit as many times as necessary. Insane? Maybe. Persistent? Absolutely. :-)"

Donna Alward

“Remember getting the message/story across in the best possible manner is what’s important. Your feelings and your ego is not. Develop a teachable, humble spirit and embrace opportunities to grow.”

Lorna Seilstad

"Read the instructions and do as the editor says, asks, suggests, etc! Don't be so in love with your book that when you get that letter that looks like a rejections BUT has "suggestions," :advice," "requests" that you crumple it up and toss it away thinking, "what do they know?". That little piece of paper says (in essence) "make these changes the way I'm asking you to and I will reconsider this work for publication." This is a test. Do your very best to pass it."

Audra Harders

Don't ever demean an accomplishment by saying or thinking, "I was just lucky" or "Anyone could have done it." Don't look at a project as too large. Break it down into steps and accomplish them one at a time. If it's helpful, record your page/time goals and accomplishments in your planner. Check them off as you reach and overtake each one. It's like that joke, "How do you eat an elephant?"

One bite at a time.

Cheryl St.John

This isn't a business for the faint at heart. It is tough and often hard on your ego, but if you are meant to be a writer, you can't walk away. It is part of who you are. If that is the case, toughen yourself to the disappointments and celebrate the highs.Your attitude is everything.

Margaret Daley

You cannot write on your novel until you open the document. I don't know how many times I've sat down at the computer and read blogs, updated Facebook, tweeted some stuff, checked email, clicked links, and suddenly the two hours I had set aside for writing is gone. Open the document, read what you wrote last, and start putting some more words down.

Erica Vetsch

Write. Write. Write.

Do not feel you have to necessarily pick one genre, but you must FINISH projects. There is no success waiting for you with unfinished work. Prove that you've got what it takes by getting the job done every time. Editors, agents and fellow authors respect that because they know how hard it is.

Ruth Logan Herne

Believe in yourself. Work hard to improve your craft. Don't listen to the Negative Voice. Trust your writing will improve the more you write, so write something everyday. Celebrate each small success along the way. Ask God to bless your work. Set publication as your goal...and never give up!

Debby Giusti

"If you're serious about a writing career, go a little INSANE EVERY DAY and 'do the same thing over and over again' by WRITING every day. That is the single most important advice that I have heard over and over and over again. Just do it."

Pam Hillman

"Being a published writer is a demanding business, not a hobby. When a publishing house signs you on it's because they recognize your potential to earn their company money. Staying published can take a ton of time away from other things you may want to do. So you really, really, really need to believe seeking publication is the direction God wants you to go and be committed to it for the long haul."

Glynna Kaye

That's a lot of wisdom!

Finally, today I challenge myself and you to put on your game face. If you're doing NaNo, if you're working on your next manuscript, proposal, query or contest entry, and you aren't reaching your goals and feel like you're constantly treading water, remember...

If you always do what you always do. You'll always get what you'll always get.

Don't make me bring out the wet noodles.

Today one honest commenter will have the opportunity for a five page critique and for another commenter..well, let's talk. Seriously. Let's talk about where you are and how to get to where you want to be. You, me and the phone. Thirty minutes.

Winners announced in the Weekend Edition.


  1. This very night I am finishing revisions on a project. Great feeling.

    Plan to start something completely different next week.



  2. Helen, you rock star you!!

    Way to go.

    I bet you would have gotten up BEFORE Ruthy wouldn't you?

  3. Ooo a convo with Teeeeeeeena! That's worth something!

    I'm, uh, supposed to be trying for my 1667 today. I have a 4yo still not asleep [I swear - the kid is about to get sleeping pills at dinner time if he doesn't start sleeping sooner*].

    I'm at 837 [which is better than the 652 I was at when I sat back down to write].

    Yes. BICFOK is very important. Very, very important.

    I think you also have to know WHEN to say it's not happening and that's okay. Krista Phillips is, of course, a very prime example of that. But the rest of us have days or weeks or whatever like that too. Still try to squeeze a few words a day but give ourselves permission not to if circumstances warrant. Death [or impending death] in the family or ill children [or ill yourself] or whatever the case may be.

    Today, for me, it was a 6yo at the dentist who then lingered at home all day b/c unnumbing took a long time and a 4" stack of papers that HAD to be graded today.

    So now I'm back to it. Because last month I wouldn't have. And I wrote bubkiss last month. But I'm not going to hit my personal goal of 3500 today and that's okay. If I get my 1667 I'll be fine :).

    I'd love a phone call with the world famous Teeeeeeeenster!

    carolmoncado at gmail dot com

    *There is copious amounts of sarcasm there. No one call DFS.

  4. LOL I probably would have gotten up after you Tina and needed ten cups of Helen's coffee to boot!

    XOXO~ Renee

  5. Thank you for all the writing wisdom and the honesty. :) I've made editing my first manuscript a goal for NaNoWriMo (I'm calling it my nano-NaNoWriMo, in the sense that it's a smaller scale goal and not in the sense that Vince took it - ie: one billionth of something):

    But thank you for making me clarify that, Vince! ;)

    A dear author friend read my manuscript and made comments, so I have something to go off of - I've just pushing it off because editing seems so daunting to me. But hopefully this challenge will inspire me to at least dive into the editing process, whether I complete the edits or not. I just need that kick in the pants or those lashes with the wet noodles to get me going... ;)


  6. *Putting* it off, not *pushing* it off... Although I guess that kind of works, too! ;)


  7. *Been* putting it off... OK, I need to go read or study or something, or I'll end up editing comments all night instead of editing my manuscript, LOL!


  8. This can apply to other aspects of life besides writing. I love what Erica said about losing two hours on email, facebook etc. When I was in the city I had limited access and to be honest didn't really care that I wasn't online. I come home and bam Im wasting time again in the mornings etc on the computer. (Of course this weeks frustration is trying to download my antivirus program which wont install and when it does it stops the internet working.) I found I had time to read in the mornings and time to just relax but at home I spend that time online. need to find a happy medium.
    Oh the 6.30 wakeup is a little early for me even if it does tend to happen.

  9. Not an early riser, Tina.
    Night owl.

  10. The 630 thing makes me want to cry. At least Ruthy is an hour behind so it was 730 for her at that point.

    But anything before about 10am should be illegal. Then I could write from 9-1 and sleep until 9 or so.

    Why can't it work the way *I* want it to?


    Carol [who is uh not definitely not wasting time instead of adding pure drivel to her MS]

  11. Today, I sewed. No that's not some fancy way if saying I wrote. I cut material and sewed.

    I kept telling myself to input the words I wrote last night and do some more editing on the story that's due for June release. But I didn't.

    My writing times a touch haywire, but I have been getting some done.

    And for that... I'm grateful.

  12. TINA!!!!!!!!!!!!
    I failed to get you any words of wisdom.

    (please, the sigh of relieve is uncalled for!)

    So here are some.

    You get rejected on 100% of the manuscripts you don't send in.
    You lose 100% of the contests you don't enter.
    You don't sign a contract with 100% of the agents you don't query.

    Do it. Send it. Stick your neck out. Take a risk. Enter, submit, query. Do it. And then while you wait, get back to work. Do NOT sit around and wait for that rejection, start a new book.

  13. Here's my embarrassing honest confession.

    I read somewhere that sometimes when editors request a manuscript, an author will simply never turn it in. I thought wow that's crazy!

    That's me.

    Last year I made it a goal to enter a lot of contests, and I succeeded. Last spring, I had 2 requests for full manusripts from editors from finaling in contests and have made very little progress on completing my manuscript.

    The editors were none other than Emily Rodmell and Tina James. (I hang my head and hide when Emily is a Seeker guest.)

    Every time I tried to sit down and write, I felt like every word was like pulling a tooth. Every scene sounded one dimensional.

    I've finally determined part of the problem is my story is simply not made for Love Inspired. My characters are too "crazy" for the line and when I try to rein them in, I no longer like them.

    After several months of struggling, I finally decided to write my story like I want. Then after the whole thing is on paper, I may go back to see if I can tweak it for LI. If not, I'll search out other houses.

    I'm happy to say, my writing is a lot less painful now and I'm getting more accomplished.

    Please, enter me into to both drawings.
    bcountryqueen6 at msn dot com

  14. Great post, Tina.

    I'm doing the MBT version of NaNo so I can do my personal goal of adding 50,000 words to the WIP.

    Like Carol said, having that goal makes me push when I might otherwise have gone to bed.

    My new plan is to get up and write before work. I had to make that change because I was falling asleep at night without making adequate progress. I have never been a morning person but this has actually turned out really well so far.

  15. Mary C!! Brava. I am getting up at four tomorrow. I guess I better go to bed. Duh.

  16. Wow, this post brought tears to my eyes! Honestly.

    First off, 70 pounds!!!! That is SO awesome! I've kept about 12 pounds after every child, and I have six kids. You can do the fat math. :O

    Now, I loved the words of wisdom. The wasting time can be my downfall and I think it's because I'm afraid it won't be GOOD. And that's just stupid. Because it won't be good. The first time. And then I can revise and revise and cut and revise and it will be better. Fear of failure keeps me trolling facebook when I should be writing.

    Connie!!!!! That's a huge confession, good for you! If I had Seekerville powers, I would absolve you! Especially since you figured out what was holding you back.

    I'd love a critique or a chat. I would be so nervous to chat on the phone but I'd slap myself a little and go for it anyway.

  17. Connie!! Honest self evaluation is much more important than chasing a line that isn't right for you. Congratulations!!

  18. I miss sewing, Pinson.

    I really, really miss it.

  19. P.S. One of my kids said this a few years ago and it still makes me laugh!

    Kid: Mom, you know that saying about 'if at first you don't succeed, try, try again'?

    Me: Yup.

    Kid: Well, I really think it should be 'if at first you don't succeed, try, try try again... and then you should just STOP because it's not WORKING'.


  20. Awe, Virginia.

    Remember: Insanity doing the same thing over and over and expecting different results.

    I was a Weight Watchers drop out even.

    But decided I could do anything for six weeks. And I did. Then again another six weeks. X3 total. Took me a year.

    Now time to realize that what I was doing with my writing time is not working.

    Okay to bed. Up at 4.


  21. Virginia, that is a WC Fields line.

    "If at first you don't succeed, try, try again. Then quit. No use being a darn fool about it."

  22. Tina,

    Your honesty is legendary and I'm glad you stayed the course on this post. I can relate.

    I heard Tracey Peterson speak in a tiny Indiana town and she talked about how she makes detailed outlines before writing. Then Judith, who was with her, said Tracey was typing in the van as they were going to the various towns for book signings! I think Ms. Hakes was with her, too. Anyway, I'm seeing a pattern here.

    I am facing a circumstance now where I can go on as I always have and get the same results or really stick my neck out. Old habits die hard. I'm aiming for change, but am amazed at how entrenched my fears are, and therefore my behavior is. At least I identify it as fear, which is a start.

    The status quo doesn't make me happy, but it's comfortable. KWIM?

    I'm in for either prize

  23. Radcliffe,

    I wss itching to sew too. Got this wild hair. Sewed an outfit for my grand daughter and decided to work on a tablecloth, placemats and napkins. I' m nearly done with the set and my wild hair is thinning.

  24. I go through these creative moods.

  25. That's the way to kick us up to the next level, Tina!

    My biggest problem is the battle of the blankets. You know, when the alarm rings, but the blankets are so nice and warm...and besides, I was up twice in the middle of the night...and there are riots in Peru...

    You get the picture.

    Up at 4:00, Tina? Well, I'll go for 5:00, at the computer by 6:00 (one thing I never give up is my morning Bible time) (and taking the dogs out).

    I'll check in tomorrow morning at 5:55 to let you know I'm on time!

    If I miss it (that's Mountain Time, of course), then Tina R. can get out the wet noodles!

  26. Haha! WC Fields? I have a vague idea of a cigar and a red nose. I'll have to check him out and see what other good stuff he said.
    The scenes are going well tonight. Maybe it was all the Hallowe'en chocolate I ate earlier!

  27. I so get the, my writing time dissappeared on email and internet, so I've been casting off blogs and sites, etc. left and right. But things like email and facebook still get me, so yesterday, I started this:

    I had to delete all my bookmarks and use these instead. And you know, it's kinda working, I'll get the itch to look but I know my little button will keep me out, so I keep on working, and what's worse is it SHAMES me. I push on the button before my allotted time and it shows you a chart of how often you get on those sites and how often you tried to click on when you weren't supposed to. Anyway, I had tried Leechlock, and it worked some, but I hated it when it killed me in the middle of reading something so I shut it off, this won't lock you out. Like it much better.

    And sewing? I used to sew, then I started this whole writing thing--heck I don't even mend anymore, there are shirts with missing buttons in the basket probably going on 3 years now.

  28. A little shameless plugging here I have Mary Connealy on my blog today and if you know any Aussies send them my way for a giveway.

    I now have my virus protection working but think it needs some tweeking as things seem to be so much slower tonight.

  29. Tina, you don't know how appropriate this post was for me right now. I finally have all the time I need to write. What am I doing? Everything but. Since I'm between stories, does percolating/fleshing out count?

  30. Ohhhhhh! Great advice. All I want to do is write right now, but I have to work the day job. I'll read this post again tonight and write, write, write.

    I REALLLLLLYYYYYY want the phone call. Pick me. Pick me. :)

  31. Aha! I knew there was a key to success! No sleep! :p

    Thanks for the honesty, and for the Seeker insights.

    I salute you all on your writing journey, published or following that road. Me? I need a push or something. I have 20,000 words in my WIP, and have a pretty good idea of where to take it, but I’m afraid… what if what I write veers off track to what is in my head? It sounds such a petty thing, but I’m afraid of my story veering off course, and the whole thing falling apart. What am I accomplishing by not writing? Nothing, but at least I haven’t derailed my story, either.
    I love this story and still have a long way to go. I need to set some sort of goal to finish it. How? And how do I keep to it? Self-reinforcement is not always trustworthy!

    I am planning on entering Great Expectations in December, so maybe while I’m waiting to hear back, I can come close to finishing the story.

    I… don’t sew…

  32. Here we are, 5:55 MDT, and I'm checking in before starting work!

    No wet noodles for me, Tina!

  33. Mindy. Tiny goals. Reachable ones.

    30 minutes a day to start. Set a timer. Then an hour...

  34. Up at 5:00 AM, hammering away, revamping. Dark Roast Coffee, exploding through my veins.


    I borrowed this motto from my wonderful husband, a successful businessman.

  35. I'm going to try this again -- blogger said "sorry, we cannot fulfill your request" then ate my post. Grrr.

    As I said previously, I much prefer YOUR Tulsa vacation, Tina, than Ruthy's and Mary's version. Probably because my daily 4:30 comes earlier and earlier the darker the mornings get. But I stick to it so I can meet my daily word count. I'm NOT a night time writer!

  36. Good Morning, Tina.

    You know I'm not a morning person so getting up an hour earlier to write will not work for me BUT I do have routines that work for me.

    I give myself an hour to write 1000 words, now my sentences don't have to be grammatically correct BUT the words do have to move the story forward they can't just be "fluff". And that works for me. Sometimes, I break it down to 500 words in 30 minutes because that's all I have to spare.

    9 X 10 out ten that works for me, especially if I have an outline to go by.

  37. This weekend I realized what the hold up was in my writing career.

    1. I submitted
    2. I kept writing

    3. (And this is where it went sour) I haven't submitted any of my other manuscripts, or queried any agents. They're just stacking up, and that's crazy because there are a couple I like more than the one I submitted.

    I guess I thought I'd just wait to hear back about the one and then submit another and so on, one at a time for years. Then it hit me, these other stories might be better or if offered to another publishing house exactly what they're looking for.


  38. My honesty is legendary? Okay I am in trouble now.

  39. Elizabeth! I love it. Thank you for sharing.

  40. Rose! New picture? Beautiful.

    1000 in an hour. Wow you have a handle on slaying the internal editor.

  41. Kirsten this reminds me of a question and answer session with Marlena Fortune. You can check her out in the archives. She is our most esteemed fictional former agent.

    Here is a recap:

    TR: A very concerned reader asks about the possibility that a manuscript entered in several contests with different judges is requested by multiple judges. She further asks if it would be better to wait until the results are in on one contest before entering the same manuscript in another.

    MF: Darling, sit down. We need to chat. The concept of refusing to allow multiple submissions, is not a practice that is for your convenience. Contests are the one venue where you the writer who is not agented have a measure of freedom from these ridiculous practices. There are only two scenarios where you should wait until the results are in before entering a manuscript in the next contest. One would be you are serving 20 to life in the state pen and have a lot of time on your hands. Two would be you aren't very bright. I will assume that since you are in Seekerville, neither applies.

    Your wildest dreams should be that you get a call that two judges from different publishing houses or literary agencies want your manuscript. Send those puppies out and politely advise the requesting parties of your delightful predicament. Then celebrate.

    So Kirsten keep those manuscripts moving!!!

  42. I'm a slacker Glynna. I'm a SLACKER!!!

  43. Tina, Great post and so what I needed to hear this particular morning.

    Thanks and how funny that you were so quiet and they weren't even there.

    Congrats on the 70 pounds. I'm still working on that goal myself.

  44. Tina great post! Wow do you ladies ever sleep? I don't know if I could think that early, much less actually write! Great post!!!


  45. Helen, good for you! And coffee...

    Oh, you have no idea right now!

    Hey, did you know those little business centers only allow you to work 30 MINUTES????

    OOPS. ;)

    But there wasn't like there was a line of folks at 5:45... which (in Teeeeena's defense) was late for me because I was on East Coast time. Which means 6:45 for a gal who's up earlier.

    But the overnight desk guy was great about opening the room a little early.

    And letting me grab coffee a little early.


    Ruthy was lovin' Tulsa!

  46. Tina,

    70 pounds is awesome.
    A little over a pound a week if you break down into small bites. So why when I diet and only lose a pound/week I feel like it's not working? Stupid but true.

  47. Thank you Tina and Marlena Fortune! LOL! Love the line about 20 to life.

    And you're correct, since I'm not breaking rock on a chain gang I need to get my behind in gear and the manuscripts flying, because they're really not doing a whole lot of good on my zip drive.


  48. LOL, Tina! I can relate to you, but not so much to Mary and Ruthy!!! I can easily become intimidated and discouraged by such prolific writers, but it's not going to help me write any faster. I'm just a tortoise plodding a long a page at a time. My solution--I have to work longer hours. But that's okay. I think.

    Glad you ladies had fun in Tulsa!

  49. Tina, thanks for the inspiring, well...kick in the butt post!

    Ruthy and Mary could star in a remake movie--Sleepless in Tulsa. LOL Do they ever sleep anywhere?

    Don't anyone be fooled by Tina's claim of being a slacker. No one works harder than Tina! Juggling jobs, Seekerville duties, her family and writing and doing it all beautifully. My hat is off to you, Tina. Or would be if I wore one.

    To fit your post, I brought grits. I don't like them but will shove down a huge helping today.

    Off to write.


  50. Great post, Tina! Encouraging and inppiring. :) So appreciate the exhortation to make changes. I'd been stuck on my story for awhile, and trying to find time to write with two young kiddos is tricky.

    Mid-September, I decided to do my own version of NaNo, like Mary mentioned, with MBT. I did a very long synopsis of my story, compiling all my notes from 4-5 different places, so I had it all in one place. I also started planning ahead on the scenes I was going to write.

    November 1st, I started getting up at 4:00 (yes, a.m.) and writing from 4-5:00. My word count has varied daily in th, mornings, but I've also set a goal of 2500 words five days a week. HUGE changes for me, but I'm so excited to see my story moving forward. The scenes aren't pretty, but my sotry is getting down on paper.

    I told my husband I might just keep this pattern until I get the whole first draft out, even if it means going into December. We'll see if he goes for that. :)

    Thanks for your honesty, Tina, and good luck with the 4:00 "get up" time!

  51. I'm back after putting in an hour of editing, so now for an hour of boring stuff - shower, breakfast, daily housework - and then I get another hour with my story!

    I loved all the advice in this post. I'm just sorry I don't have enough room on the white boards in my office/school room to write it all up there. I guess I'll just print it out for the notebook and put up one at a time.

    Tina! 70 pounds! You are awesome!

  52. Carol,

    About 3 months ago, I made a goal to write 200 words a day 5/week for 2 weeks. The next two weeks I bumped it up to 300/day.

    You know what? It worked. Somedays I wrote more, but everyday, even if I had put writing off, I could sit down and write before I went to bed and still make my goals.

    The more I wrote, the easier it became.

  53. PS Please enter me for both drawing. :)

  54. Trust me, Teenster -- I would have been in that room with you, sawing logs when you awoke at 6:30 AM!! Ruthy and Mary are just insomniacs ... successful ones, yes, but insomniacs all the same. A definite plus for a writer ...

    Wonderful advice from some wonderful authors!!


  55. I so need this butt kicking advice every day. Every day I need to read about how much Mary and Ruthy wrote the day before while working their full-time jobs! Because, Tina, I would have been snoozing right along with you at 6:30, I'm afraid.

    TINA! I am so proud of you for losing the weight. 70 pounds is a lot, and nothing to sneeze at! Quite an accomplishment, my dear, and I am sending you congratulatory hugs.

    I am doing better about setting myself goals and working hard to ignore distractions and just write. I finished the first 35 pages of my proposal, now I'm working on the blurb, hook, and synopsis. It should be done in a couple of days.

    Do you guys ever have trouble focusing and keeping up with everything else in your life when you're deep in the first draft of a book? Because I do. It's kind of scary to me. I think that's why I put off writing sometimes.

  56. Wow! Just wow! Okay, now that I'm over the shock of awesome prizes today. I think I can talk, er type.

    It's no secret I've had a rough year. I questioned God and His plan for me to write, not just once but multiple times. It's not that I wanted to walk away from writing. I didn't. The prospect of God wanting me to give up writing hurt. A lot! And there was that little thing about the lack of huge, flashing road signs telling me which direction to go.

    I will say that God has phenomenally blessed me and confirmed this journey.

    Last month I wrote over 15k on one manuscript and I just started a new one for NaNo. I'm also hitting revisions hard on another. Yesterday, I wrote 1712, finished up the synopsis for a proposal and got it sent out and read Winnie Griggs' Once Upon A Thanksgiving (beautiful, beautiful story-made me cry, love Griff and Ruby).

    I'm a little nervous about keeping up with my NaNo wordcount over the weekend since I'll be attending Women of Faith. I'm shooting for a little over 3k today and hopefully another 3k Sunday, and of course I'll try to find moments where I can write, maybe even in the bathroom. This post is just the encouragement I needed to know it's possible to write all hours and most places. *g*

  57. I think Ruthy was working in the business center but I was actually in the 'continental breakfast center'. They have this amazing little waffle machine.

    And the nice man in the
    'continental breakfast center' let me stay there as long as I wanted. No thirty minute limit on waffles. There is, however, a thirty WAFFLE limit though.
    I'd rather not say how I found that out.

  58. I wanted to say, congratulations on the weight loss, too. That is the next thing I'm trying to wrap my head around. You'd think with my very limited diet it'd be easy, but oddly, it's not. To balance all my computer time I get up periodically and excercise in between 500 words or so. We'll see if it works.

  59. Oh boy....the guilt! I sat a half hour ago to write...I'm still on the internet. Guess this is my last read. LOL
    Luckily, I have long legs and can kick myself in the butt quite easily. *grin*

    Thank you for the honest post! My writing has actually floundered to and I need to get on it. Those quotes are incredible. Thank you ladies!!

  60. Thanks Tina! My writing time is well managed but I so could use the discipline to lose 70 pounds.

    Yesterday, I read my completed MS. I love it, but found a few flaws I need to iron out.

    I have to admit, I get discouraged and think why can I write in right the first time.

    I've had a critique. Thank you seekers so very much.

    I'll be gone this weekend to a church youth conference but would love to chat with you sometimes.

  61. First, TINA!!!!!! 70 Pounds???? You must be microscopic, because you were kinda tiny before!

    Congratulations on such an amazing accomplishment!

    And we've all come to realize that Mary and Ruthy are freaks of nature that no one could possibly keep up with.

    And...thank you for this timely post as I'm working on a NaNo style wordcount goal this month.

  62. Okay I am quickly going over these messages to find the smarty pants who said they couldn't go to bed until their page count was reached.

    Whoever you are...I love this..

    When you put that up against Melly's question below...

    "Do you guys ever have trouble focusing.."

    You see that the bottom line is you have to set reachable goals. Reachable for you. I could lose the weight in six week increments. Cause you can do anything for six weeks, knowing after that you can eat in the middle of the night or gorge on chocolate. Only after six weeks you've changed, and you actually get sick when you do that again.

    The same with writing. Set measurable reachable life changing goals not crazy ones.

    Patterns you can live with.

    So if you are not a NaNo person. Hand up. I am not. I can't set myself up for failure like that.

    Manageable goals that make me feel good about myself and allow me to taste success daily.

  63. Erica. Wipe your glasses dear. I was 220 plus pounds. On a good day.

  64. Hi Tina,

    Great advice! I'm just seeing how much this 'write every day' thing works.

    Started Nano for the first time because I actually was between projects and I had an idea. So I did a rough outline and started. After day 2, I'm ahead on word count! I really doesn't take long to do it - about 1 hour to 1 1/2 hours to get the required daily amount in.

    Hoping this will rub off permanently and keep me on track!


  65. Tina, when I said I have trouble focusing, I didn't mean focusing on writing. I meant I have trouble focusing on everything else--life, my kids, their routine, picking them up from after-school practice, making sure they eat three times a day, things like that! I get scared I will get so lost in my WIP that I will forget my kids!
    So far I haven't really forgotten them--except for that one time, but I was only about 15 minutes late picking her up from drama practice.

  66. Oh, that's not a problem, Melly. That's a good thing.

    So easy to fix.

    1. Set your phone to alarm and remind you.

    2. Give your kids tasers and tell them to taser you when they want your attention. However only when blood, fire or other natural disasters are involved.

  67. Everyone raise their hands if they think occasionally forgetting you have kids is a good thing.

    Both my hands are raised and Charlie the cat raised all her paws.

  68. Tina, thank you so much for this motivating piece. I recently began revisions on my second novel while starting two new works, so I must write, write, write!

    Write on!

  69. Sharon, can I wear your hat while you write?


  70. Oh Melanie, I so relate.

    My kids know my characters by name. Tonight we are going to the fair and Nick my 13 yr old says.

    "Mom, James and Joni aren't invited."

    I realized I'd neglected my children, so I've given them each thrity minutes of individed mom time everyday.

    THis is day 3. So far it's working pretty good.

  71. Thanks for relieving my guilt, Tina. But I think tasers in the hands of a 13- and 9-yr-old would be a bad idea. :-)

  72. LOL, I beg to differ, Melly. My cats have tasers and they only rarely have to use them.

  73. Oh, I LOVE nano-NANOWRIMO

    That's awesome, Amber!

    Donna Alward is coming back in December to talk about 1K1HR, a "thousand words in one hour" concept that should help a lot of us.

    Mary, those are good words. A little late.... Some of us READ TINA'S E-MAIL, that's all I'm saying, darling....

    Mindy, that fear of writing... Of not getting going or re-started.

    That's never of God. He wants your success even more than I do. And maybe even more than Missy.

    So don't make me come down there, because I AM that mean. And don't pretend otherwise, M.O. ;)

    Oh my stars, I hate self-doubts. That means I PRETEND a lot.

    Leaving carrot cake with tiny frosting carrots on top because I'm that cute.

  74. Hm. I'm conflicted on the forgetting the kids aprt. Maybe because mine are so young (youngest are 2 and 1) that if I 'forgot' them for any length of time they'd be dead. Seriously. It's a hands-on and eyes-on deal, every hour of every day, until they're alseep.
    That's why I can't write until they're alseep because half of my brain is constantly 'checking' on the little sounds I hear in the next room.

    And think that's also WHY I write. I need some time for my brain to relax and build its own world that doesn't include poop or small climbing creatures.

    I think at 12 and 9, forgetting the kids is probably right up their alley! I know my almost 12 year old LOVES when I forget her and she can sit in her room for an hour and read.
    P.S. Said child has a small party every morning because it's ONE DAY closer to the Inheritance release on the 8th! (4th book of Eragon for all you non-fantasy readers...)

  75. Didn't make my word count last night [did I already say that? I'm bleary eyed and getting ready to grade essays...] but I did get some done. I was too bleary eyed to get it DONE last night. I'm in the middle of a very crazy couple of weeks scheduleing wise - doc appointments, school activities [where I have to be, not just drop offs], family visits, birthdays, etc.

    My plan today is to try to get a couple thou in after school but before the pizza party at a different school tonight.

    To tell you how bleary I am... I walked out for school/work without putting makeup on. Rosecea + no makeup = not good.

    I'd much rather chat wtih y'all but papers on African Americans in WWII are calling my name.

  76. Well yes, Virginia good point. It's really hard to write in jail. So you must watch the toddlers.

  77. LOL, my children are easy to forget for hours at a time. After all, the ones who don't live at home anymore probably forget me for days at a time. And the ones still here? Well, when they're awake at the same time I am, they usually remember me when it's time for food or if they're out of clean laundry.

    But when they were younger? Virginia, you're right. They'd be dead. Seriously. At that age it's 24/7 keep them in the front of your mind.

    And Tina, there's no way I'm giving Maggie-cat a taser. She's psycho already!

  78. Fabulous advice! As my husband says: If you show up and care, you've already beaten out 60% of the competition.

  79. 70 Pounds! What an inspiration! What next, the cover of Vogue magazine???

    On another note--Has anyone heard about Amazon's move to act as a lending library?

  80. Tina! that was my back-up plan for NaNo! I was going to rob a bank and then get some time in a cell by myself. But hey, I'll take your word for it.

    Carol, I hear you. And that comment about giving the 4 YO some sleeping pills made me think of a day I went to the post office. My two year old was drinking juice and water in a bottle. The postal employee makes small talk with him and says, 'yummy juice?'

    I said, 'No, it's beer. It helps him mellow out in the afternoons.'

    The woman gave me such a LOOK.

  81. Thanks, Ruthy! :) I thought having a challenge like NaNoWriMo would be helpful, but I wasn't sure I could commit to something like that while still being a full-time student... So I picked a "smaller" challenge (unofficially) and couldn't resist calling it nano-NANOWRIMO. ;)


  82. Yes! Elizabeth I got a blurb on it last night. If you are Prime member--totally recommend-it has begun. Here is what I got.

    (Anyone ever get nervous Amazon is taking over the world? Or is it just me?)

    Dear Customers,

    Today we're announcing a new benefit for Kindle owners with an Amazon Prime membership: the Kindle Owners’ Lending Library.

    Kindle owners can now choose from thousands of books to borrow for free, including over 100 current and former New York Times Bestsellers — as frequently as a book a month, with no due dates. No other e-reader or ebook store offers such a service.

    Kindle Owners' Lending Library
    The Kindle Owners’ Lending Library features a wide array of popular titles, including Water for Elephants, Moneyball: The Art of Winning an Unfair Game, and Fast Food Nation – plus award-winning novels such as The Finkler Question, motivational books like The 7 Habits of Highly Effective People, biographies and memoirs including Kitchen Confidential, and Pulitzer Prize-winning books like Guns, Germs, and Steel.

    We’re adding the Kindle Owners’ Lending Library to Prime membership at no extra cost — Amazon Prime remains just $79 a year, which gives you free two-day shipping on millions of products, plus unlimited instant streaming of almost 13,000 movies and TV shows.

    If you’re a Kindle owner with Prime, you can start borrowing books today. If you don’t yet have a Kindle, our all-new Kindle family is available from just $79.

  83. No, me I have investigated the whole writing in jail scenario. They make you exercise in jail.

  84. And yes, Elizabeth, I am currently in negotiations with Vogue Magazine to be on the binding of their November issue. I get 1/8 inch of prime real estate to flaunt it.

    I decided to go with my upper lip.

  85. “Say it ain’t so, Joe.”

    It isn’t true
    that if you always do
    what you always do
    you’ll always get
    what you always got.
    There’s something here
    someone forgot.

    You must distinguish
    between what you do
    and how you do it.
    Then take what’s left
    and add luck and talent to it.

    Joe got it wrong
    every day of his life.
    Kept playing the same numbers
    never getting them right.
    His family and friends
    said Joe was insane;
    he didn’t have a clue
    how to play the game.

    But Joe became a genius
    for the whole world to see
    the day his numbers
    won the state lottery.

    Moral: God may want us to win but He still expects us to buy our own lottery tickets.


    P.S. For every bromide there is an equal and opposing bromide.

    P.P.S. NANO: as of yesterday: 4866. Buddy name: VincePlato.

  86. Wow! Thanks for that! Very inspirational! :)

  87. Raise your hand if you had to go to to look up the definition of bromide.


  88. Tina, I thought I knew what bromide meant until your comment.

    So then I HAD to look it up.

    The upshot? Yes, I did know what it meant, up to a point. I learned a lot more on Thanks, Vince!

  89. Great kick-butt advice all around, Tina!

    Reminded me of a conversation I had Tuesday morning at my "Moving On" Bible study. Someone had asked about my writing and wanted to know if I needed to wait until I was "in the mood" or got inspired in order to write.

    I almost laughed in her face!!!

    Then I explained how I usually sit down to work on my novel immediately after lunch every weekday and stay at it until around 6:00 p.m. The words are going to spill out onto the page one way or another, whether I've been "inspired" nor not.

    See, I remember my first ACFW (ACRW back then) conference, when Robin Lee Hatcher was the keynote speaker. In one of her presentations she told us how important it is to treat writing as a business. If you work at a "real" job, you don't wait until you're "inspired" to balance the books or take inventory or whatever. You clock in and you WORK.

    So that's what I try to do as a writer. And...somehow..inspiration follows.

  90. Now to go back and read this yummy looking post. *getting hungry for pasta*

  91. Potassium BROMIDE is what I give my dog to control her epilepsy.

    And, yes, it sometimes gets OLD and TIRESOME remembering to give her all her meds twice a day, but we love her too much to forget!!!

  92. I thought it was something you added to water to soak your feet. Thank you, Vince for elevating my literary gene. I have only one so this is highly important.

  93. Ah, Vince!

    NOW my day is complete. :D

    But as the child of a chemist and a nuclear engineer, I thought of bromide as the tranquilizer, not the platitude.

    My first thought: "HUH?"

  94. I've got another one I always remember.

    If you want to make a character likeable, have someone like them.

    That sounds simplistic but it works. create a friend or a pet or a sister who likes your character and he's automatically likeable.

  95. Elizabeth is working...


    KIRSTEN, get 'em out there.

    Do not dilly dally. We know not the day or the hour....

    (this is my Biblical very NEW YORK mindset at work)

    Need coffee. Time for mid-day fix.

    I love coffee.

  96. Great advice listed here, Tina. I'm scribbling down some of the sage words and slapping up sticky notes appropriately.

    Habit can be a good thing and a bad thing. Like Erica mentioned, if you're in the habit of opening your computer and reading email, facebook, tweeting, etc, that does nothing for your publication prospects.

    Open up those docs and like Pam said, WRITE WORDS forwarding your novel!

    Thanks for dusting ol' Albert E off, Tina. Always nice to see him : )

  97. LOL! Forgetting the kids? I tried!

  98. Love this. Breaking the cycle has been big for me this year. Even that has happened in fits and starts, but I'm making progress. So yes, I'm doing Nano, and whereas in the past, I committed to TRY to write most days, knowing from the beginning that I absolutely would not write every day and pretty much dooming myself to failure, because hey, life happens and I need a realistic plan and yah, yah, yah, this year I'm committed to write every day. Period.

    So far so good (of course, it's only Day 3), but I'm already thinking about doubling my daily goals on the weekends, for the challenge of it.

    Doing something different to get different results.

  99. Now that I've been honest, I have to come back to the post.

    Tina, you thought waking at 6:30 was "sleeping in"?

    Congrats on your dramatic weight loss. I'm making strides in that department this year too, although nowhere near what you've accomplished. Kudos!

  100. Now I've read all the comments.

    Connie Q, I love that you realized LI wasn't for you. I'm starting to think the same thing about my writing because no matter how I try, the story always grows to be bigger than what an LI should be. Hard for me to accept, though. Still not there.

    Virginia, you have a smart kid! And you're right about the young'uns. I only feel like I can raise my hand now that my baby is 6yo and can dress and on occasion find food for himself.

    Melissa, really cool tool. Gotta try this one.

    Mindy, isn't it funny how that happens? Whenever I've found myself with what's supposed to be free time, it always seems to get consumed by everything but writing.

    Rose, that's a good tip. Thanks.

    Bridget, "right the first time." I can't tell you how many times I've quoted this, something I picked up in my early corporate days in the 1980's. Comes for Total Quality Theory. But you know what? I finally realized it doesn't apply to writing. Rachel Hauck has a great post about this and why it's important to see it through then rewrite today: Free yourself to write how it comes, then add beauty later.

    Carol, hugs for not making yesterday's word count. It happens. Keep charging ahead.

    Boy, I love posts like these. I've copied at least half of the Kick-Butt quotes into my inspiration file.

  101. One more thing...

    ACFW Novel Track has been huge for me this year is helping me to make a change in my writing. I've written more words this year than in the past five. Something about being accountable, to a person or even to a group, really makes a difference.

  102. Great advice, Tina! And I'd love a phone call from you, having heard about your adventures in Tulsa from Mary!

    I'm actually rather proud of myself, because I didn't start my nano-NaNoWriMo (thanks, Amber! That's what I'm doing too!) until last night. I like to start working on my writing nights by 7 but we had a late dinner and then I had to go visit my grandma in the hospital (she's being discharged today, nothing serious), so I didn't get started until after 8:30. I am SO not a night owl but I ended up editing about 2,300 words-worth on my manuscript and quitting by 9:30. Hurray!

    But editing is SO much easier than writing, especially, since I'm a heavy self-editor the first time around.

    However, I must say last night was a fluke. I'm usually very rigid, and if things don't go as planned, forget it. And I don't even have kids to blame.

  103. Stephanie, you did 2300 words in under an hour? NaNoWriMo will be a piece of cake!

  104. Patricia W!

    I've wanted to start the Novel track but wasn't really sure if it would help. As an ACFW-er I think I'll check it out!

  105. Okay, I admit, the only thing I can think is:

    Mary uses a flat iron???

    Mary, do you have curly hair?????? I never noticed!

    Okay, now on the the real topic...

    Great post, Tina. And so true. We have to really buckle down and do the work. No being divas. :)

  106. LOL, Virginia!! I did the fat per kid thing, too! :)

  107. Thanks, Patricia! But last night was easy, since I was just editing. Writing takes a LOT more time. And, I KNOW there's some big scenes later on that need some major work, so I'm just getting ahead now, I guess.

  108. Connie Queen,
    Sounds like you made a huge breakthrough! Good for you. I'm applauding.

  109. Janet,

    I'm lovin' your grits, girlfriend! :)

  110. Virginia, love your fat math comment.

    TFFW--Too Funny For Words!

  111. Patricia, btw your picture emphasizes your svelte face!!!

  112. Thanks Tina. I read your post last night and it still hurts to sit down, ;)

    Congrats on the weight loss. I'm also on the same Weight Watchers journey, and since March 1, 2011 I've lost over 55 pounds, but food has always been a part of my writing process. I've authored four non-fiction books and with every one I gained at least 30 pounds! Then I lost some, then got another contract and went up another 30. SO you can imagine where my brain is as I fight to finish my WIP (targeted to LI). I don't feel like I want to be that hard on myself that I gain weight again rather than lose. So I walk away from the computer a lot to avoid having nothing but pluspoints values for M&Ms and potato chip rewards in my journal. (And forget that healthy snack suggestion. Carrots don't cut it, lol).

    As I composed this, I was praying and the voice inside just told me to get over it and start writing. LOL. Thanks for planting that seed, Tina!


  113. I'm impressed, Christina! Good for you!

    You've been eatin' your grits, honey! ;)

  114. Congrats Tina and Lyndee on your new bodies! Such huge accomplishments. The control weight loss takes is unbelievable. Anyone who loses weight can write a book. No sweat!

  115. Ahhh, Debby, I don't believe I've ever had grits and now that I'm gluten free I doubt I'll ever be able to try them. I do eat rice and brown sugar. ;)

    So, I received an email today and all of my priorities have changed and I am now bowing out NaNo. *g*

  116. Tina, thanks for the butt kicking today. I seriously need it. I'm facing a whole host of revisions. Did I mention I really don't like revisions?

    Well, there you go. Not really dragging my feet, but after work it's hard to get motivated because I'm so tired.

    I have been trying to gear up on the weekends to make up for lost time though.

    Please don't pull out the wet noodles. I'm not sure I could take it. :)

  117. Tina Congrats on the weight loss.
    I agree with after a certain amount of time you dont want so of the things you did before. I have lost around 22 pounds this year due partly to illness but also cos I was really wanting to lose it and am keeping it off. I now still like chocolate but a small one rather than a blog is plenty. I still have an issue with chips/crisps. I can also go for days without chocolate.

  118. WOW Tina!! Once again this post was exactly what I needed--thank you! And thanks to those other authors who shared their words of wisdom. ~ I must confess that Erica's contribution really "hit me"--as I so often have big plans to get LOTS of writing done that day, then by the time I check e-mails, blogs, etc.etc. the time has flown by, and I have to move on to something else *sigh*. So...I WILL set daily writing goals and adhere to them---starting tomorrow! ~ Today I was blessed to join sweet friend, awesome author, and SEEKER Debby Giusti for lunch---what a fun time I had visiting with her!! And oh my, she really encouraged and motivated me! So between Debby and this post, I'm rarin' to WRITE!!! Hugs, Patti Jo :) p.s. And for those of us who also need some *sugar* to help us keep going, I brought more Georgia Pecan Pralines (not homemade, but YUMMY!).

  119. Oh, Christina, did you get bad news??? Hugs.

  120. p.s. TINA!!! 70 pounds??!! WOW! Good for you! (But go ahead and have some Pecan Pralines....they're great for energy, LOL). ~ Hugs, PJ

  121. Christina, with that grin, it sounds like good news!!! Something you can share?? :) :)

  122. Christina, grits are corn. I wouldn't think gluten would be a problem, though I could be wrong.

    Honestly now. My main problem with writing is, I don't get my housework done early and end up using my writing time to clean.

    Just today God showed me that guarding my writing time means using the rest of my time wisely. (That's something I've struggled with since grade school, when they actually graded us on it.)

    I'm not even touching the weight loss talk.

  123. Fried pickles?

    70 lbs?

    those are hard to believe. Mary writing a novella in the bathroom and Ruthy up at 4am to up her word count by 10,000 is easy to believe.

    I just don't know what else I can give up to find more time. Okay, a complete avoidance of the internet? How about if all of us writers and authors swear off blogs, browsing, tweeting and Facebooking for a month so I don't feel left out?

    Great advice from everyone, but Tina, do you really think we are going to believe YOU are a slacker? I must object.

    If I don't tell you that I've submitted my polished proposal to an agent by the end of the month, please someone come and kick me.

    I won't even open that new Amazon Box that's coming after the 21st until the proposal is out the door. (what do you call it when you email it? Door seems so last century)

  124. Christina!!! I am at work but you should email me if you have good news so I can hoot with you!!!!

    Click on my little picture with my name in blue and follow to my email.

  125. Debra Marvin just gave us permission to slap her.

    Did you all see that??

  126. Oh, Kirsten! No, no, no, girlfriend! You submit every ms you finish! That's how Ted Dekker said he finally started getting attention. When they saw he kept pumping out stories the sat up and took notice. You go, girl!

  127. Yes. Slap me.

    and ditto on the Amazon thing. This idea of a lending library sounds good in a way but hey, wait, does that mean fewer people buying books?


  128. Hey SKINNY woman!
    Gracious mercy...
    You're a mere shadow of thy former self.

    I'm preparing for the onslaught as you know. Sooo excited. Will share later!

    Yes - please enter me for either or both!

    Y'all have a good weekend. Can you believe tomorrow is FRIDAY? Yawzah.

  129. Patricia, Novel Track is awesome!

    Melanie, Missy is right. It's good news, at least at this point, but I need to get to work. ;)

    Andrea, the problem with the grits is the very high possibility of cross-contamination. Unfortunately, I'm highly sensitive to gluten.

    Tina, okay.

  130. Habit #1: The "document" is OPEN! ha!

    And...I have no clue how this Amazon Prime Lending thing is going to shake out, but Stealing Jake is one of the books, so if you're an Amazon Prime member and don't have a copy, now's your chance!

  131. Seriously, Tina? Thirty minutes on the phone with you? PLEASE count me in!!!

    Hmm... my story. Well, I'm a mom with four boys. I'm a wife and mom who is chronically ill. I'm a mom of four chronically ill boys. I home-school one of them when we aren't fighting headaches and fatigue. I get on to quickly check email and FB and Twitter and Seekerville... Where did the time go? Writing time over, time to move on to my brown monkey chores. Sigh... I WILL get in some writing time!

    Too many days it doesn't happen. Last year, I set a goal to complete "Finding Beth." I set word count goals for every week. I couldn't do a daily goal because of, well, the above duties (minus the internet time). And I did it! I finished the ms before the date I wanted it complete. Go, MOM! Right?

    Now, I need to kick butt with my next novel. I have just under 10K. It's taken me too long to get that many down (about a month).

    So, Tina, that's my story. Do I get a chance at that phone call? I'd take a critique, too, but I'd LOVE a phone call!

  132. You lost 70 pounds? 70? Congrats! I'm trying NaNo and can't figure out how to exercise with this and my regular life. I'd be happy to lose 5 at this point.
    Thanks for the moral booster and the kick in the patootie.
    Honestly, the first 2 days of Nov I got up at 5 & 5:30 to write before work. Last night my sweet hubby nicely suggested I try to get some sleep. So I guess there's a Time and Place for everything.
    Thanks again!

  133. Tina two things:

    1: I am so glad I stopped by today. Something made me click the Seekerville link. Now I know what that was.

    2: I am so glad you bled a little on the page for us (ME) because I am SO the same way.

    Margaret Daley's words were especially gold to me. I just might print those out and put them up for me.

    As for what I want? Why that 5 page crit of course. ;-)

    But seriously, I want to be better at my editing. Nothing puts me off writing more than an afternoon of editing, so what Cheryl said was really great for me-- go for the little goals! I too often get daunted by the BIG goal instead of realizing big goals are made up of little goals.

    Okay, I've talked long enough and probably spelled a word or two wrong. So g'night and THANK YOU for a great post!

  134. Checking back in before I hit #1k1hr for my second thousand.

    Tina and anyone else fighting the doubt dragons, #1k1hr on Twitter ROCKS for this. Knowing there are other people putting down words for that hour really helps keep you on track (except when you're really tired like when Debra checked in on me last night but I'd fallen asleep at the computer.)

    Tina!!!!! Completely forgot to congratulate you on the weight loss. I know all about that battle. SO proud of you!

    And you're not alone. My husband keeps saying he's very worried about Amazon taking over the world - and then deciding how they want to run it.

    As far as the getting up early - definitely an acquired thing. I have never been a morning person. Yes, those blankets and pillows are singing my name at 5 - but I have a routine that works for me and now I look forward to it. I drag myself to the coffee pot and do the little "getting ready for work things" while the coffee perks. Once it's ready, I climb back onto the already made bed with just a small bedside lamp on and soft music playing. The dog usually snuggles up next to me. It's such a peaceful way to start my writing day. I *almost* don't mind the lost sleep.

  135. Christina, get to work, then, and we hope to hear some good news! :)

  136. I'm gonna say it here.

    I don't want to write.

    I just don't.

    Four kids to a thing tonight. Totally not what I thought it was going to be [pizza in the caff followed by activities in the gym]. Instead it was a 20min informational meeting followed by pizza [though my family polished off like 12 pieces...] Going to stuff like that by myself with them tends to drain me [even though they really did really well].

    Plus, I still have to make cookies tonight. DH has a work thing tomorrow and apparently they were requested ;).

    And you haven't seen my living room...

    And I built a fire. So I need a blankie and a good book [I have one by Laurie Kingery sitting her partially read...]

    See. So many other things to do besides writing.

    And y'all have my permission to smack me upside the head with a trout if I don't make myself do SOME.


    Thanks Tina! Timely as always :D.

  137. TINA!!! Forgot to congratulate you on the 70 lbs lost -- that is AWESOME!! HOLY COW ... do you realize that's a small eighth grader???

    And maybe it's just me and the Marquis de Sade, but I kind of like the idea of tasers ...


  138. A thirty-minute call with a Seeker?
    That may be one of the best prizes ever offered.

    And my lovely wife gives me a hard time on the mornings when I go for coffee (and writing) before work, though Ruthy starts writing before I get to the coffee shop.

  139. Christina, now I'm excited!!! Can't wait to hear your good news! I'm already imagining what it is. ;-)

  140. Linnette, I was chronically ill for years and diagnosed with, it seemed, everything under the sun. One of my four kids was really ill. Now they are older and I have two that are ill every week, sometimes most of the week.

    email me if you'd like.

    christinainspirationals [at] gmail dot com

  141. Carol, there have been days we've all felt that way. I'd say it sounds entirely justifiable given your day.

    The way I deal with days like that is I make myself write at least 100 words every day. It doesn't sound like much but it means I can't slide because really, what excuse can I make for not fitting in time for 100 words. The benefit is it keeps my head in the story even when writing isn't in my heart for the day.

    Hope tomorrow is a better writing day for you. *hugs*

  142. Oh my goodness, Christina. Now you've got us all curious. ;)

    Best of luck.

    And kudos to you for sticking it out through such trials. You deserve good things.

  143. Keep racking up those brownie points, Walt!

  144. I read this post last night, but forgot to comment because I was so busy writing! Your post helped me, Tina. You wouldn't believe how much. After over a week of not typing a single word in my MS, I got in 2,250 words today. YAY!!! Now, let's just see if I can do that tomorrow. LOL. Thank you so much for being the catalyst that got my rear end back in the writing mode! Awesome post! :)

  145. Thank you for that post! I'm doing NaNoWriMo for the first time & had motivation problems yesterday. Got a lot of other stuff done and snuck in some time on a book I'm reading....

    I would love to be at the point where I can write a novella while the flat iron heats up! Will force myself to put words, any words, down on paper today!
    Thank you! Larissa

  146. Aww man, I hate I missed being here for this one, Tina.
    I WANT the 30 minutes.
    Oh yeah!
    I bet you kick butt better than Ruthy ;-)

    Great post. Since being urged by some very important ladies who were riding in a car toward Tulsa, I've kicked my writing into a more focused gear.
    It's paid off.
    Almost 3K words in 3 days. That's a big deal for me.

    Thanks for the reminder.

  147. Thanks SO MUCH for the quote. I already love it b/c of my Al Anon affiliation . . . enough said. But to have it tweaked into a message that says KEEP doing what you're doing is fun. I mean, I'm a long-time batter of head against granite wall, and normally have to be told to STOP IT. I'm only hurting myself.

    But to think that in THIS case, I'm SUPPOSED to keep up the motion, no matter how insane it feels to edit again, again, again, again, ad infinitum . . . well, you really gave me food for thought. Not that I had stopped the action, no way, I'm too sick for that.

    I write every day. Quite a lot. One who bats her head has no problem w/work ethic. But the new thing I'm doing this winter is taking 4 online courses w/my critique partner to sharpen what Feedblitz and ACFW courses have taught me. That feels GREAT!

    Hearing this morning that perhaps what in other realms of life is a habit that must be broken, in THIS ONE CASE can be a strength and NOT Thank you. I'm definitely open to whatever joys come my way, phone calls, critiques, Feedblitz's wonderful menus, whatever. Thanks,Tina. Thanks very much.

    Gail Kittleson

  148. Oh, I love kick butt advice. Just the inspiration I often need. And I'd welcome a critique, or--gulp--a thirty minute kick butt phone conversation. Humiliation can be a great motivator. (Setting boundaries continues to be a big problem for me.)

    Hope this late comment still counts. I was out all day yesterday and by home-time, a definite wet noodle--one without even enough starch to hold up for a visit to Seekerville.

    Thanks for rounding up all the good advie. This is a posting to refer back to. Often.


  149. I really loved your post. Thank you for all your words of wisdom and for all the others words. I love the advice I receive from those who are published and know the ins and outs. I realize I have a lot to learn.
    Thanks again.
    Glenda Parker

  150. Oooh boy. Erica CLOBBERED ME (yeah - I'm procrastinating NaNo by reading blogs). As soon as I finish this one I am BACK to writing.

    So far, NaNo has gotten me a bit better on track, but I'm not being as "good" as I should be. NEED to stop allowing unnecessary distractions to take me off task. Yesterday, I shut off my inet connection when I was writing, and BOY did it make a difference. Off to do that again - within the next five minutes. Really.

  151. Oh my, a 30 minute conversation with would be a dream come true! And could I use her wisdom right now!!!

  152. Why, oh why did I just know I needed this post?! Maybe it was the kick butt phrase. LoL. Thank you. Just what I needed to hear. *eye roll* Exactly what I needed to hear.