Wednesday, May 19, 2010

Girding the Summer Loins

Tomorrow is the last day of school. The last day to appreciate the mid afternoon quiet of my house. The last day to sit at the computer and pound out thousands--okay, hundreds...tens?--of uninterrupted words. As much as I love not having to get up and get kids off to school, or get ready for work myself, this free-for-all time of year challenges my self discipline and my organizational skills.

I want to stick to a writing regiment and accomplish my one big goal: Get my SFR WIP done before July 11. Yes, specifically that date, because I will be gone for the month following it. I want to get the first draft done, out to my lovely crit partners, and also allow the story to marinate for that time, unseen and untouched. When I return in August, I will be looking at it with fresher eyes. Well, after I get over the jet lag they'll be fresher.

I can do this. My kids are old enough that I don't have to monitor their every move. When I was a kid, we left the house after breakfast, returned for lunch, maybe, went back out, came in for dinner, unless we called to say we were eating at a friend's, then wandered home when the streetlights came on. Daily adventures and evening exhaustion were normal parts of our summers. I may have my kids follow that plan more than a few times. Except for coming home when the streetlights go on. It doesn't get dark here until 11pm in the summer, a wee bit too late for the under 16 set.

Between that, camps, and trips, I should be able to keep them busy enough not to hear the dreaded "B" word: Bored. They know what it means if they utter it in my presence. The "C" word: Chores. Husband will be cutting wood for the coming winter, so there will be LOTS of stacking necessary.

That means, the only one I'll have to closely monitor is myself. I predict more than one mental kick in the butt in my future, but if I can work like a demon until July 11 and get to "The End," it will be worth it. And yes, dear reader, feel free to kick. Accountability to someone other than yourself is a wonderful source of inspiration. The muse does not like having a sore bottom.

What are your plans/goals for the summer?

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At 4:35 PM, Anonymous Abigail Sharpe said...

Hi, Cathy! I wandered over here from Eden Glenn's facebook comments. Good luck finishing your MS on time. I remember doing things like walking home alone or going to a friend's house and coming back when it was dark. Now I'm an overprotective mother. *laugh*

At 7:21 AM, Blogger Cathy in AK said...

Hi, Abigail. Yeah, the world's a wee bit different now days. Even in our little town, I won't let my kids do half the stuff I did at their age : )

Thanks for stopping by!

At 9:43 AM, Blogger LVLM said...

Yes, good luck with that WIP! I don't know how you authors with kids manage. I don't have kids and still I'd probably have a hard time organizing time to write while just taking care of the hubby, cats and house.

So where you going this summer?

I have a 2 1/2 week break in June and will going on a road trip with my sis from NJ to FL. She and her partner are moving to FL and I'll be driving with her and their 2 dogs and all their computer equipment.

Should be fun! But I leave day after quarter finishes and come back the day it starts again. So no real home time break.

When you talk about your daily routine as a kid, my thoughts of Brentwood and growing up pop-up! We were out till all hours, never home or bored for that matter.

Maybe up in Alaska it's a bit more rural or do you live in an area that is closely populated?

Speaking of Brentwood, on my Facebook, I'm friends with several people that all lived on my block when we were kids. On one person's post, another person, whom I don't know, said she lived in my house during the 70's. They must have been the family that moved in when we moved out. What a small world!

Anyway.. good luck on your wip. I'm looking forward to your other wip as well. :-)

Wordveri: Boofbars... LOL

At 1:37 PM, Blogger Cathy in AK said...


I'm not nearly as efficient with my time as other mom writers, but I hope to get better. We'll see how it goes : )

The road trip with your sister and her partner sounds fun. Nothing like hitting the highway with people whose company you enjoy.

Only a 2 week break between quarters? That doesn't sound like nearly enough time to hit "reset" in the brain. But I'm sure you can do it!

Our trips include DD#2 heading to Grandpa's ranch for a month while DD#1 and I jet to Europe for a Girl Scout trip. Despite having to travel with a gob of 13 and 14 y.o. girls, it should be a blast : ) Poor hubby has to stay home and work, but i think he'll enjoy the peace and quiet. As long as I leave a list of which critters need what, all should survive until we return in August.

Maybe Brentwood was a little more sedate when you and I were growing up, because I doubt I'd let my kids do the wandering we did if we lived there now. My Mom's philosophy was that as long as no bones were broken or arteries cut, we stayed outside until she was ready to deal with us : )

Here in AK, we are in a very small town, so while there can be great community events and activities like science or music camp, there are days when nothing is really happening and kids find trouble to get into. Nothing major, just typical bored kid stuff.

How funny that you "met" someone who lived in you old house. Sometimes the world is so much smaller than we realize.

Have a fabulous trip and continued success in school!

At 6:02 AM, Blogger Writer and Cat said...

I just want to survive the summer with my sanity intact. It's kind of a difficult goal, but I have faith I can do it!

At 7:35 AM, Blogger Cathy in AK said...

You have kids, W&C, so there are no guarantees : ) But I have faith in you too.


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