Have you ever watched the TV show Zaboomafoo? It’s a turn-of-the-century children’s show that my first child adored. Whenever the Kratt brothers went on one of their adventures they would sing a ‘Going To The Closet’ song, open the closet door and immediately the entire contents would rain down upon their heads.
This morning I had my own going-to-the-closet moment. I opened the kitchen cabinet where I keep spices, calendars, pens, etc., and most of the paper contents gave an ominous shift. I quickly closed the door and opened another cabinet whose contents are of the paper and pens variety. There was no prescient rumble, everything in the cabinet simply fell out onto my feet and, briefly, onto the head of my very surprised dog.
I sighed and cleaned out both cabinets.
That wasn’t an easy thing for me to do. Not because I am organizationally challenged (which I am) but also because it means I only had time to write two hundred words today. My daily goal is at least five hundred to a thousand new words as well as editing, etc. It might not sound like not much and on some days, golden days, I can pound out one to two thousand words with ease. Words that I like in a WIP I’m excited about. But most days aren’t golden days and the words hide.
When my second child was small and reliably napped I had a five hundred words a day goal (I even blogged about it here) that I usually hit. Then he stopped napping and writing became a haphazard affair that I did when I could. Last year he started school and I looked forward to all the writing time I would have while he was out of the house.
Which never happened. Like everyone I have a busy life. Mouths need to be fed, work needs to be done. After a full day I would drop down into my seat at my laptop twenty minutes before I had to leave for pick up and write something that ended up being on the lines of: “They did stuff. It was fun and exciting. Emotional development.”
This summer I spent time working on OUT OF TUNE VOL II. I had to, there was a deadline to be met. Afterwards I reorganized my thinking and returned to my five hundred a day habit. When this worked well I upped my word count. Now my priorities are: 1) Family / anything that eats and breaths (i.e., children and the dogs). 2) writing 3) everything else in life.
This is working well on the writing front, it’s easier for me to settle in and concentrate and the words come faster. On the everything else front things are going downhill. Never an enthusiastic house keeper my home now appears to have a permeant grittiness and I’m not sure if I should clean the floor of my car or use it for compost. But the words keep flowing. The only reason I took time to clean out the cabinets was I was afraid of braining my small child the next time he went in hunt of a pencil.
Now – time to get back to my words.