Reality:  Nice place to visit, but I wouldn’t want to live there.

And yet, here I am, forced out of a pleasant writing haze into realities rather harsher than I care to tackle just now.  Challenges are popping up on every front – work and home – and they are, I’m afraid, the sort I can’t avoid or escape by diving into an attractive novel or writing one of my own.

I don’t know about the rest of you, but when I reach those times in my existence where the load of responsibilities and pending catastrophes threatens to flatten me face first in a swamp, and I know something has got to give, the first temptation is always to give up writing time.  As though it can wait, as though it is not important, as though it is not the one thing that keeps my nose and mouth out of the muck so I can continue to breathe.

The weekend challenge this weekend is quite simply to spend time at the page, with a middle finger raised in defiance to all the forces that conspire against that.  How much time?  Now that is hard to predict.  I’m on call.  Things are piling up around the house.  People I love are in crisis.  It’s time to decorate, and think about gifts, and holiday baking.  Now don’t get me wrong – I love Christmas – but it’s a huge temptation to just say, “I’m too busy to write just now – I’ll get back to it after the Holidays.”  And, I know from experience, that I will eventually get back to it, but probably not before February.  Honestly, with everything else going on, I fear that if I once stop I will never get started again.

Setting goals is so much easier when writing a draft – if you have the most rudimentary mathematical ability, you know when you’ve met your word quota.  Revision is another animal altogether, and who knows where it’s going to take you once you begin? It’s possible to fly through 20 pages in an hour, or spend several days tearing out handfuls of hair over one stubborn paragraph.  These are the things I’d like to accomplish this weekend:

1) Polish synopsis for Remember until it shines.

2) Character development on Jarod (Swimming North) and Michael (Soup)

3) A revised first chapter for Swimming North. 

That’s actually a lot, and probably more than I’ll accomplish, but impossible goals are better than none at all!  What are the rest of you up to this weekend?

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