Archive for the ‘Goals & Resolutions’ Category

NaSoWriMo: Time’s up! 13 songs drafted, none really completed, but still a success.

Thursday, November 30th, 2006

It’s the last day of November, in case you hadn’t noticed, and that means all November writing projects are pretty much at their end. In my case, that signals the end of my 30-songs-in-30-days “NaSoWriMo” challenge, which I have once again failed to complete. But I don’t really care. All I’m really shooting for when I set about to do these things is to make myself write fast and get some ideas down, and I did do that.

I managed to draft 13 songs. I can’t say I really finished even one. But that’s OK. Because this was also a crazy-ass month. At work, we had a major scramble with a deadline of 11/30 (yep, that, too, is today!), and my weekly average number of hours shot way up. I’ve also been sick twice this month, including right now, which is why I’m not expecting to be able to churn out any more than I already have before tomorrow. And my current tummy troubles have me in a really bad mood and I’m finding it hard to concentrate on anything. So yeah, not the best conditions for creative writing.

So it’s over, and the count is 13 songs in 30 days, sort of. There might even be a few ideas worth going back and polishing up, which is a bonus because I was really just thinking of this as an exercise. Maybe I’ll try the challenge again in a few months when it’s not looking to be a crazy month at the day job and I’ve loaded up on multivitamins and echinacea.

In the meantime, the month of December is usually a wash for songwriting. Too many weekend activities, too much commotion, not even time to sit idly with my laptop, my guitar, and a cup of coffee and mull over an idea until I find just the right thing to say. So this is probably pretty much it until January. But I’m pretty satisfied with where things stand, so I’ll be happy to take a break and then get back into it come the new year.

Hope everyone else who participated in a writing challenge this month got something good out of it!

NaSoWriMo: Day 1

Wednesday, November 1st, 2006

Today it begins. You’ve probably heard of NaNoWriMo, and some of you may remember that in years past I’ve attempted my own version: NaSoWriMo. 30 songs in 30 days. Last year, as a result of the death of my father, I didn’t participate.

I’m back in the saddle this time, though, so today I will be setting some time aside to begin my challenge. Wish me luck!

Songwriting book

Monday, July 5th, 2004

For a long time, I’ve been making notes for a songwriting book I hope to write someday after I’ve achieved enough success to be credible as an authority. I certainly don’t want to show my hand in any kind of public way, but I think it’s a focused enough topic that it hasn’t been written about yet and probably won’t have been written by the time I get my chance. And if it has, maybe I can still get it published.

Anyway, I’ve been working a little on it this morning, and I made some good progress. I put together practically one whole chapter and a portion of another one.

It’s really helpful to me, of course — that’s the beauty of the whole thing. The topic I’m writing about is one of my biggest weaknesses as a songwriter, so I’m forcing myself to articulate all the really useful things I’ve ever learned about this process. And in compiling examples to illustrate points, I’m having a few “aha!” moments myself.

I’m hoping it kicks my butt into actually internalizing some of this stuff and making it come more naturally.

I don’t do resolutions…

Friday, January 2nd, 2004

but here are some things I’d like to accomplish this year.

Run a half-marathon, at least. I had hopes of running the Country Music Marathon in April, but between the weather and my wicked work schedule, I lost a lot of valuable training time in November and December. With only three months left to train (and at least two months of bad weather left, and still a fairly wicked work schedule), I won’t make the marathon. I’m still hopeful about the half-marathon, though. And even if I don’t manage that one, I’m intent on being able to do it by the end of the summer.

Increase the amount and diversity of raw veggies I eat. I already do fairly well at this, but I’d like to be better about it.

Increase my nutrient:calorie ratio. Same as above, and will certainly be aided by implementation of above.

Decrease the amount of useless fat I eat. Again, I’m pretty good about this, but I still munch a little too much chocolate a little too often, and french fries never did anything good for anyone, even when they’re only eaten once in a great while.

Improve my guitar skills. I let this slip because of my wicked work schedule, but I really need to work on my guitar playing. It could be such a valuable songwriting tool, and I just haven’t taken the time to practice and improve.

Make more time for songwriting. My day job has been top priority for a few months, and that’s fine because it pays the bills. But once the big push is over (and it should return to normal by the end of March), I need to get back to spending serious amounts of time on writing songs.

Accelerate debt reduction plan. As of yesterday’s session with Quicken, my… our… THE debt will be paid off in May 2005, which is thrilling (only a few months ago I was excited to think it would be paid off by September 2007!) — but I’m a never-settle-for-less-than-everything kind of person, and I want to see if I can make it go away even faster.

Organize my clothes. This seems so minor in comparison to the others, but it’s really such an annoyance. I have a fairly generous closet space, but I have a lot of clothes because I basically have four wardrobes: my smart-and-professional work clothes, my sexy-and-stylish out-and-about clothes, my ever-growing collection of workout wear for all seasons, and my comfy-and-hip stay-at-home clothes. I need to find a way to make it all tidy and easy to access.