editing goals rant

More on Goals & Editing Pet Peeves

May is just around the corner, which causes for me to feel anxious about re-evaluating my time and my goals. I’ve probably been in this steady state of doing little-to-no writing because I haven’t been focusing on concrete goals lately. Instead of saying “I will write for xx minutes today,” I’ve just been thinking “I need to write, period.”

It’s not much of a motivation booster if you ask me. All those goal-setting worksheets, articles, etc. that I’ve read/worked on over the years have always said, “Make your goals concrete and realistic.” I thought maybe the Poem-A-Day Challenge would kick me up from my writing rut a bit, but I’ve fallen behind on the challenge a lot this month. Perhaps it’s a sign that I’m not quite as interested in poetry as I’d like to be.

On another note, lately I’ve noticed that one of my big writing/reading pet peeves is when supposed professionals make bad typos/grammar mistakes. It happens to the best of us, but where was the editor or peer before the article/writing went out? I find that when I edit others’ works, sometimes I’ll notice the grammar/spelling mistakes more than the actual writing itself. It bothers me that much–I remember reading a paper in college for peer review and I felt in true disbelief about how my colleague was able to even gain admission into college. Really, the paper was poorly written–a lot of run-on sentences, grammatical errors, etc.–I felt bad when I gave the paper back to my peer because it had all red marks over it.

Meanwhile, this leads into another pet peeve of mine: when I ask for constructive criticism from others, but they simply return my draft back saying “Wow, really good” or “Nothing needs to be changed” or something else along those lines. Often times, these people might just be too lazy to say much or really put effort into the editing process; other times, they might be so clouded in judgment (and maybe automatically put a halo over my work) that they tend to not see the loopholes I’ve left in my draft. The most helpful writing advice often borders harsh, yet has enough evidence to back up the criticism. I’d rather someone tell me what I need to work on more than to tell me that I don’t need to change anything anymore. I know I’m not a perfect writer, and, in general, everyone always has something they can improve upon.

challenge change goals Who I Am

A Quiet Note (Nightmares, Catch-up, etc.)

Since Friday, I’ve been having nightmares, and I already know the reason why they’ve been occurring. A lot of things have been unsettling in my day-to-day life, and I’m under a considerable amount of stress trying to make decisions.

I fell behind on the whole Poem-A-Day Challenge this past week due to other things going on (excuses, excuses). Yesterday, I managed to catch up to Day 16; most of the poems have been tepid still, but just have to keep writing. I had also fell behind on my Cinnamon Juice Blog, but I caught up for the most part. Yesterday was the only day all weekend that I was able to sit down properly and write for quite a bit. I have a feeling days like yesterday may be far and few for awhile.

And that’s about it for now; April will wrap up in ten days, so I wonder if I’ll be ready for May’s challenges by the end of next week. These past two months have been difficult in terms of producing new stories/motivation for rewriting. But, can’t feel any regret from the “time lost”; just keep moving forward.

#amwriting challenge editing goals poetry

Craving spontaneity & Setting Goals

Today seems to be a day where routine is simply thrown out the window: I have a list of tasks that I’d like to complete for the day, but it seems I just don’t feel like doing it. During this whole past week, I’ve been feeling restless again and craving spontaneity.

I’ve also found myself crawling out of some dark mazes with renewed inspiration for writing ideas. Yesterday, while proctoring a test at work, I suddenly found a long-incubating idea sprout forth from my mind and furiously wrote down the whole thought. The incident made me realize that I should really bring a bigger notebook along with me from now on, for future moments like this one.

An hour ago, I caught up on this past week’s prompts from the Poem-A-Day Challenge. Poetry is one area of writing where I feel I may never truly excel in, but that doesn’t mean I can’t still write for the fun of it. Probably the whole point of the P-A-D Challenge is to hone my craft a little more, but I find that I’m just writing for the sake of writing. It’s that whole NaNoWriMo mindset–just get the words down. However, I have been posting my poems on each day’s thread at the challenge, so, unlike NaNoWriMo, I’m showing those rough drafts to the world. Raw, unfiltered poems: I suppose it’s my specialty.

Speaking of community challenges: I signed myself up for the 2nd annual Writo de Mayo over at the NaNoLJers community. What makes Writo de Mayo different from NaNoWriMo is that each participant sets his/her own goals for the month of May and strives to meet them for the month. I tried participating last year by attempting to finish Novel #2 that month; however, it was much harder for me to pull the motivation through the month since I didn’t have others posting their word counts, fueling me along. I still managed to make some progress on that novel, but not enough to finish it off that month. This year, I intend on completing Novel #4 in May and also pumping out 50 hours of rewriting for Novel #1 (which would have been an appropriate goal for last month, NaNoEdMo, had I not been so distracted by other things).

So there, I’ve set out my goals for all my blog visitors to read. Now I must follow through with these ambitions and put them into action in the coming weeks.

goals inspiration Novel 1 Work in Progress

Goals Written from January

I was thumbing through some notes from one of my notepads last night and came across a list of goals I had written from early last month. To my relief, I found a couple of goals that made me change my mind about how I had been feeling about self-publishing:

– Self-publish short story collection by May 2009
– Publish Novel 1 via agent

Ah, so that was what I had originally intended, at least, early last month. So, that puts me a bit more at ease, although now that I realize I had wanted to find an agent, I’m going to need to move a little faster and efficiently on revising the manuscript. Deadline for the revision: June. I don’t know why I have been telling others that I will publish my novel by summertime; I probably got that mixed up with my short story collection.

I had to shake things up for myself today since I noticed that I had been stuck in a routine for the past month and a half; because of this change in routine, I got a few good sparks and have jotted down a few new notes in my to-go notebook. When I came back home from my brief outing, I was able to start some rewriting on Novel 1; hooray!

I’ve also been blogging like crazy, especially on my food blog, Cinnamon Juice. It’s getting a little more buzz these days, thanks to a couple blog rolls and Twitter. It’s good to see that people are interested in my thoughts about food and related topics.

Hoping for another productive day tomorrow.