Specifically, writing for NaNoWriMo. And I have discovered a couple of things while using NaNo to get back into the habit of daily writing. The biggest discovery is that I can’t do it without changing my routine. I have had some very successful writing days, which for me is about 3,500 words, but every one of those days this month have either started at 4 a.m. or the family is scattered so I don’t have to bother with dinner. I’m not a fan of getting up at 4 a.m., but I work full-time and exercise (and make dinner most nights) so there’s not a lot of free time in my day.
I was on a writing roll on Sunday morning. I got up early. Not at 4 a.m., but around 6 a.m. and everyone was still sleeping so I wrote about 1,700 words and planned to get back to it in the afternoon. But there was the planned 6-mile hike with my cousin, a trip to the grocery store, football which I combined with prepping some Thanksgiving side dishes, then dinner prep, dinner, and clean up. And THEN I could sit down again to write. The roll had turned into a lump and I struggled to put a couple hundred more words on the page, but was too tired to do much more than that.
Let me get back to my successful days.
- Quiet time
- Cleared sofa
- Pile by folders, pads, pens, post-its
- Chakra candles (I know they’re totally legit because I bought them at Five Below)
- Muladhara (Root for energy and productivity)
- Svadhishthana (Sacral for creativity)
- Anja (Brow for wisdom).
- Minimum of one scene idea
- Snuggle down on sofa
- Place laptop on lap (clever name for that device)
- Write for one hour
- Break to switch loads of laundry (or empty dishwasher, or . . . )
- If there’s time/more ideas write for another hour
- Examine notes written during that session or previous ones for ideas to percolate until next time
- Count words
- Input into spreadsheet
- Pat self on the back
As for actual American Thanksgiving day, we start with a Turkey Trot, so if you’re reading this around 8 a.m. EST, I’ll be getting ready to run 3.1 miles to earn my feast later today. And, by the way, it’s to be the coldest Thanksgiving in 20 years – 22 degrees (feel like 13 degrees) at race time. Brrrr!
Another Thanksgiving tradition in our house is Refrigerator Mashed Potatoes. They can be prepared up to two weeks in advance to take some of the pressure off the actual day.
9-12 large potatoes, cooked and mashed with a mixer
8 oz. cream cheese
1 c. sour cream
2 tbsp minced onion
2 tsp salt
¼ tsp pepper
2 tbsp butter
1 ½ c. grated cheddar cheese
Spray 13×9 inch baking pan with cooking spray. Combine all ingredients, except the cheddar. Pour into prepared baking pan. Top with grated cheddar. Bake at 350 degrees for 30-45 minutes.
P.S. Leftovers make awesome potato soup.
P.P.S. It freezes well (don’t top with cheese if freezing – add prior to baking)
And, by the way, I counted these words in my NaNo count.
Happy Thanksgiving to all those who celebrate and Happy fourth Thursday of the month for those who don’t.