Found This Amazing Tool…

On Tuesdays I plan to talk about books, or travel. But today, I’m going to talk about the new tool that I bought: a simple 5 x 9 weekly planner.Planner

I know, I might as well buy a Rolodex, right? Paper planners are a wee bit out dated. I haven’t bought one in years. I have an iPhone and all sorts of apps, but decided yesterday on a lark that I really needed to see my blogging and writing schedule on paper.

You may have noticed I haven’t blogged much lately. I’ve been spending time writing more, and all of the other demands of being a wife, mother, and full-time worker-bee at my day job had me feeling overwhelmed. But here’s the other reason. When I would think of something I wanted to include in a blog, I wouldn’t have time to do it right then, so I would tell myself to remember it later.

Did I remember it later? Um… nope. I did not. Unless I had something scheduled with another author, I just let it slide.

My new calendar is helpful for keeping track of book promotions I’m running, blog posts I want to do, and little niggly tasks I need to take care of.

One perfect example is that our bank was bought out, and all of our account numbers have to change. As a result, my family is in the process of changing banks. I was getting overwhelmed trying to keep track of all of the different bills and automatic withdrawals that I had to change to the new bank accounts. I made a list in my new planner, and I feel much more on top of it.

This little planner is small enough to fit in my purse, so I can take it with me.

So… 1995, I’m back!!!!

What do you think? Has our modern world moved past the days of a paper calendar? Or do you still use one?

Trying Some Short Fiction

Now those are words that I ever thought would come out of my mouth. Short? That’s crazy talk. keyboard

But I’ve been encouraged by a writing group that I’m in to come up with a 1,000 – 2,000 word extra-short story related to a holiday between Thanksgiving and New Year, and it may be chosen fora n anthology. It can’t be a chapter of a longer work, and it has to stand alone.

This is coming from someone who literally dropped out of the Purdue MFA in fiction twenty-five years ago because they wanted me to write short stories. I couldn’t do it then, and frankly, since then I’ve had little interest in short. I don’t read a lot of short fiction, and as such, never had any interest in it.

But, on the other hand, I wanted to be a part of this promotional opportunity. So I brainstormed and brainstormed. How on earth could I have a romance in that few words, and end it? Really? The couple would have to know each other previously, obviously.

So tonight I punched out a first draft of a short involving two characters from my two books, and I really like it. Mark and Deena anyone? It’s tentatively called A Kiss at Midnight and it takes place on New Year’s Eve in Las Vegas. If I don’t get accepted for the anthology, I’ll probably post it here, but I’m excited about it.

Nik Wallenda — A Perfect Example of Goal Visualization

Watching the interviews with Nic Wallenda before the walk across the Grand Canyon provided a perfect example of goal visualization. Many of us, in thinking about what we want to achieve, skip this step.

I was glued to my television last night watching Nik Wallenda attempt his walk across the Grand Canyon. Our kids were watching, so we were hoping it wouldn’t end tragically. We joked before the walk that it was bedtime, but they had been watching the lead-in, and it was clear they were determined to watch it. Fortunately, it ended well. He lowered to a crouch twice, which was nerve-wracking, but he made it. See the full article here.

“Daredevil Nik Wallenda Completes High-Wire Walk Across Grand Canyon”

 

Grand Canyon South Rim

Grand Canyon South Rim

 

We all have lessons that we can learn from his visioning process. First of all, even with all of his family history and his own previous walks, he didn’t just say, “I’m going to walk across the Grand Canyon.”

In the interview before the attempt, the reporter asked Wallenda how he prepared for the walk. In addition to showing video of his training center in Florida, where he walked on a wire during a tropical storm, he talked about how he pictured the walk. He talked about the feel of the wire beneath his feet, the wind, and the view of the canyon walls. He painted amazing pictures with words of the sensation of walking in the sky. Beyond that, he talked about how he would feel a quarter of the way through, halfway through, how he would feel as he started the ascent, and how he would know he was almost there.  He added, “Although I won’t hear their thunderous applause, I know they will be applauding when I get to the other side,” he said. When he spoke of the walk, it was always in positive terms, never if I finish, but when I finish.

Most goal-setting exercises invite you to visualize the end result. Have you gone through this process? Do you know what it will look like when you become successful? Can you define success? With any process, it’s important to visualize what the end result is. I know that my book became more real to me when I had a cover image, even if I hadn’t settled on a title.

Pick a goal and visualize what it will look like when you are successful. I’m visualizing a desk at home that I want to clean off. Now let’s see if I can get that done. I think it may actually have brown wood in there somewhere.

 

Photo of the Grand Canyon by www.world-wide-gifts.com