Falling into NaNoWriMo

I was pretty hyped up for NaNoWriMo, earlier than in the past two years…but events from over the weekend made me lose momentum and motivation. My word count has been lagging behind, and really, my plot hasn’t been as inspired as the previous two years.

I’ve considered dropping out already (despite it being only Day 3), but I feel like, for my own sake, I should keep doing this and see the project through the end of the month.

I find that it’s easier to focus on projects like NaNoWriMo when I know I’m doing it to avoid unpleasant things. I hate the feeling of waiting around with nothing to pass the time.

The picture above was one of my favorite shots from my Halloween walk on the weekend. It made me think about Romeo & Juliet, naturally, but that dummy mummy up there makes the picture evermore mysterious/ominous.

I suppose I should go and add more to my word count now. Just checking in briefly on the blog. Best of luck to those who are participating in NaNoWriMo.

Featured on the "i live here: SF" Project

Photo part of i live here: SF set by Julie.

It’s amazing what opportunities I have stumbled upon in San Francisco since moving here over two years ago. I met the wonderful Julie last Friday at the Municipal Pier to take part in her ongoing photography/story project, “i live here:SF”. She started the project earlier this year and has captured some amazing photos and stories of many city transplants and locals, having them all converge through Julie’s website.

Julie herself is such a kind soul; we walked along the Municipal Pier, which was one of my old haunts when I used to live by Fisherman’s Wharf. The morning was foggy, which at first I was a little disappointed with, but Julie was so easy to work with, staying positive about how the fog gives a certain glow to the photos. She greeted people who walked by with a nod and a grin, and in many ways, I felt honored to be in her presence with her warm spirit.

The photo shoot was my first, but I felt comfortable enough throughout the hour-or-so session. As the hour progressed, the fog lifted quietly from the Bay and soon we were greeted with the muggy sunshine of the day. We ended the shoot by celebrating the spirit of the Wharf: eating crab/shrimp sandwiches from the street vendors there. It was a pleasant way to end the session, and I was glad to be able to work with Julie. I hope to work with her more in the future.

View the full entry and photo shoot.

Too many goals? & Author Photos

This past weekend I took some time off from the Internet and a lot of things that might have been keeping me stressed. It felt so nice to relax a bit and not think about things that I “needed” to do. I spent all of Saturday just reading and working out to my Wii games. Sometimes it’s best to just slow down and relax, enjoy the present.

I’ve been reading a couple of self-help books lately, and one line from Dave Ramsey’s The Total Money Makeover has struck a chord with me: to successfully accomplish something, one must have focus and take small steps at a time. It’s not the exact wording of the phrase, but that’s the general idea. It’s stayed on my mind for a couple of days because it has made me wonder if the reason why I haven’t made much strides in my writing projects is because I haven’t had focus. I’ve set out a lot of goals for myself in the field of writing, and a lot of them I’ve been attempting to work at simultaneously, e.g., finishing the first draft of Novel 4 and rewriting Novel 1. Aside from those two big goals, I’ve had smaller goals as well: blog daily in each of my blogs (three of them!), write reviews on Yelp! as often as possible, and so on. The smaller goals have become more habitual just because they are daily things for me; however, even with those, I have fallen behind.

It’s probably due to the fact that I keep just giving a little progress into each area, so it feels slow and frustrating right now. I wonder if I should reduce the amount of goals I have and try to just focus on one. What is more important to me right now?

In other news, late last week I finally received my author photos from NaNoWriMo‘s “Night of Writing Dangerously”. I had nearly forgotten about those photos until I saw the email in my inbox; they were initially supposed to be ready by February, but they probably got backlogged in their work. No worries; I was still glad to see the high-quality pictures. I’ll be posting them up on my website and my profiles as soon as I crop them down a little (they are very large files). I think it’s time to update my author photos anyway; haven’t updated in awhile! The pink jacket can only hold the audience’s attention for so long.

Here’s to (hopefully) a productive week ahead.

Start of another month; birthday wishes.

The first of February, and it’s amazing to look back on the previous month and realize the new doors of opportunity, windows of inspiration that have opened for me already this year:

1) My passion for writing has surged forward with a vengeance, giving me extra motivation to get the word out on my writing, building a fan base and also giving me more reason to go back and revise my shorter works. Despite a hectic weekly schedule, I have made big strides in my goals this past month.

2) Since I began the Photo 365 project on New Year’s Day, I have found more joy in taking pictures every day. My interest in photography has become heightened again, and I look forward to seeing the small things in my daily life through my camera lens. The extra photo opportunities have also helped me find more writing ideas.

I’m looking forward to more opportunities being presented to me as time unfolds.

In other news; the end of January came and went rather interestingly. Greetings for my birthday came a couple of days earlier when I received a surprise vase of flowers at the office (sent from my older brother and his family). It was a very pleasant surprise to receive, albeit the commute home that night was quite an amusing one (I kept receiving stares and random smiles from strangers since it must have looked a little strange to see someone holding a VASE of flowers, not a simple bouquet). I rarely ever receive flowers, but I find that when I do receive them, I feel a rush of emotions within me.


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I spent my birthday yesterday quietly with a few of my relatives and some close friends. I didn’t want too much for my birthday; just some quiet time to relax and reflect. I received a few more email/phone birthday greetings than expected, so that was nice. I feel like the past few years I haven’t felt overly excited for my birthday; sure, I’m still happy when the day comes, and I appreciate all of the greetings/well wishes, but it’s also just another day in my life that I’m happy to have. I wonder if I will continue to feel this way as the years go by.

New photo blog

Just a small announcement before I go off to bed: According to my 101 list, which I started last January, I am to participate in Photo 365 in 2009. I had attempted to participate in it in 2007, but gave up after a week or two. I was hesitant to participate in it this time around, but…I guess it doesn’t hurt to try again.

So anyway, I’ll be posting one photo per day, every day for this year over at this blog: Photo 365: 2009

Let’s see how long this will last.