Write 500 words (min) each day.
NUMBER OF DAYS I MEANT TO WRITE 500 WORDS: 22
NUMBER OF DAYS I ACTUALLY WROTE 500 WORDS: 15
ANALYSIS: I lost 1 day accompanying Husband to doctor’s appointment (“Just like old people,” Mom says). I lost 5 more days to general malaise and some actual sick, though 2 of those 4 lost days I worked on the book by shoring up my notes, so that’s something. Lost 1 more day due to architect meeting, but heck, I’m counting that “research,” so there. All this said, my average daily word count for the month of May was in the 800+ range, so though I lost a lot of days, I got more words down than I could have.
Complete 2 novel chapters each month
PROJECTS COMPLETE: 1+ chapter
ANALYSIS: I was supposed to finish Chapters 5 and 6 this month. However, schedule was a little bit messed up from the get-go, as I was still finishing up half of last month’s Chapter 4. So I didn’t start Chapter 5 until the second week of the month, and had my usual ARGH WHAT IS GOING ON HERE trouble with it just long enough to force Chapter 6 off the schedule entirely. Plus the loss of 7 working days just did not help at all. Ultimately, this month I was lucky to finish Chapters 4 and 5 … thankfully I managed high enough daily word counts (mostly hovering in the 1000 range) to do even that.
Workshop 1 project/month
UPDATE: Informed Wednesday Writing Group that I would not be workshopping again until the first draft of the novel is complete. Meltdowns ensued. Aftershocks still rippling through. High drama, none of it intended, all of it too much for me to want to deal with, really, but there you go. Hopefully equilibrium will quickly be restored.
Submit current stories/essays for publication
“Darlene” went out to The Journal, Frostproof, Gettysburg, Shenandoah, Prairie Schooner, and Hobart.
Meanwhile, Glimmer Train, Open City, and First Intensity all turned “Darlene” down.
* * *
All in all, a pretty crappy month for work—I got very distracted by life, which led to institution of NEW RULE:
EMAIL AND WEB BROWSING ARE NOT ALLOWED UNTIL AFTER WORD COUNT IS ACHIEVED.
This has actually been very successful in the few weeks since I enacted this change. I get to work unencumbered by all distractions in the early part of the morning, which means I’m more focused and also more energized, so much so that I often surpass or even double my daily word count minimums (thus my pulling May together by month's end). Most days, by the time I get to the web post-work, I’m so locked in to work-mind that I barely want to surf—I’m getting through my emails and my blog time much much more efficiently now, and have a lot more time for non-writing office work (research, office-nesting, brainstorming, reading for friends).