Saturday, August 19, 2006

Soul Maintenance

painting by Nicole Etienne

Before I launch into the heart of my post, I would like to apologize to all my fellow scribbling women that I haven’t been as present lately on your blogs. Alas, upon moving to Olympia I relinquished easy access to the Internet. I can’t hook up my townhouse until I get my first paycheck… and hurray for teachers, that doesn’t happen until the end of September!

In the mean time, I hope you’ll all excuse my somewhat erratic e-presence. Today I embark for a week-long stint of house-sitting for my aunt and uncle. I'll be at the house they built on the bay, with gorgeous hardwood floors and doors from antique European churches. I'll be sitting on the back porch, listening to music on their outdoor speakers, and drinking wine from their impressive collection.

I will also be writing.

Doesn't that sound like heaven? I'm excited to have such a lovely place to come home to, as next week I begin my professional development and, to tell the truth, I'm a little nervous. But this weekend is all about revising Revising Mr. Right. (My, that sounds awkward!) Not only will I finally be working on my novel again, but I'll be following the "routine maintenance schedule" as advised by Monica Wood in The Pocket Muse:

once a week: skip to the next part of what you're working on.

once a month: write all day without talking to anyone.

every three months: send something out for potential publication.

every six months: remove the detritus from your work space (sadly, yes, this includes the panapoly of useless file icons currently sprayed across your desktop).

once a year: take at least three days and give yourself a "Do Not Disturb" writerly vacation, wherein the creative muse stops only for eating and sleeping.

This is my once-a-year vacation for 2006... and unfortunately, the three days will be broken up by professional development for my day job. But this Saturday, Sunday, and Thursday I'll be writing, writing, writing... and wining and dining myself in high style, I might add!

It begs the question: how do you all take care of your inner writer?


theflitgirl said...

Thos excersises sound like bliss. If bliss is also incredibly difficult and draining.

I just try to work on steady maintenance, writing every day, writing more and longer than I want to everday, however long or much that may be. It changes.

Happy writing!

Anonymous said...

semi-perfect movie for you: kiss kiss bang bang. why?

two words: grammar jokes.

Anonymous said...

also, anonymous = sean today.

Renée said...

Ooooohhhh...I'm so jealous! What a fantastic way to spend a week! I'll be wishing good writerly thoughts your way from the other Washington, where I haven't had a moment to myself in approximately two months. Sometimes, my roommates just won't go away.

Dylan said...

Wow, how awesome does house sitting for your Aunt and Uncle sound? You lucky duck's always a pleasure to come back over here and catch up on the latest scribblings by you guys..I enjoy your writing a whole lot and can't wait to read your published work!

Good luck with the writing, those exercises sound great and happy house sitting Kate D!

spy scribbler said...

Wow, what great ideas! Sometimes I get so wrapped up in pushing, pushing, and pushing myself, that I don't give myself a chance to breathe as a writer.

A little freedom to feel creative is important when writing starts feeling like a daily chore!