Write 500 words each day
NUMBER OF DAYS I MEANT TO WRITE 500 WORDS: 21
NUMBER OF DAYS I ACTUALLY WROTE 500 WORDS: 15
ANALYSIS: I lost 4 days to a trip to NY to attend a family wedding, despite packing my computer. I always think I’ll write on the airplane, but I never do, and this time was no exception—I spent the hours to NY and back catching up on my New Yorkers and New York Magazines. I also lost 2 days to the world’s worst head cold, though to my credit I did actually go to the office on those days, I just couldn’t bang anything out through the fog. That said, I wrote more than 1000 words for at least 5 of the days I did write, which brings my monthly word count up to cover days lost. HOWEVER, I still count this goal as NOT MET, because honestly, it’s more about the daily pen to paper than the statistical words.
Complete 2 novel chapters + 1 other project = 3 pieces total
PROJECTS COMPLETE: 1.5 chapters of the novel
ANALYSIS: I think this new goal is silly and am going to revert back to original MONTHLY GOAL of 2 PIECES per month. Mostly because I always lost time to the “new chapter start-up” period (the time elapsed between Chapters 3 and Chapters 4, this months projects, was a record-breaking weeklong struggle), so 2 chapters takes more time than I thought. I’d rather have a goal that’s not-easy-but-doable (2 pieces) than one that’s optimistic-but-rather-unlikely (3 pieces), because who are we kidding here, completing two pieces is FABULOUS AND WONDERFUL AND NOTHING TO BEAT MYSELF UP ABOUT—I refuse to lose momentum due to shame-spirals, and am therefore dialing down the aspirations a bit. Slow and steady will eventually win the race. That said, I WOULDN’T HAVE MET THIS MONTH’S GOAL anyway, so there you go. It was a function of days-at-my-desk, clearly, and as you can see above, April suffered serious attrition for days-at-my-desk.
Workshop 1 story / 1 essay each month
Ha. Have also decided this is not the most productive goal, and am going to cut it, mostly because I have decided not to workshop the novel until Draft 1 is behind me, and as long as I’m trucking through Draft 1, it seems silly to divert attention to essays or story for workshop purposes, just so that I’m workshopping. More important, I think, that I be writing, and I’m writing the novel right now, so there.
Submit current stories / essays for publication
Last month I submitted "Dirty Darlene" to Center, Santa Monica Review, Bridge, Crab Creek Review, and Cream City. So far of this bunch, SMR has declined. Still waiting on everybody else.