Can writing be the new sex?

October 12, 2007 at 2:22 pm | Posted in Meg, rewards, writing | 2 Comments

Okay, not only am I late in writing this, but I only have a few minutes to be inspired, write something brilliant and post before my real life starts up again. Yeah, I know, not gonna happen.

You see, life got in the way again this week. A weird virus invaded my children causing fevers, rashes, facial swelling, something out of a bizarre horror movie. I haven’t had more than five minutes to myself until today and these short two hours were spent doing the work I get paid for on a weekly basis. I won’t even get into the laundry piled up, dust bunnies taking over or the dishes in the sink. Okay, my whine and attempt to beg for sympathy in this pathetic post is over.

So, during all of this crazy week, are rewards on my mind? Yes, but they are a step removed from those Bria discussed. She shared her views on rewarding herself when she reaches her writing goals. I’m a bit jealous. Weeks like this, actually writing is my reward.

Yes, getting to sit in my barely comfortable chair at my non-ergonomic desk in my cold (or hot depending on the erratic weather) computer room is a reward for surviving the chaos of illness, motherhood duties and part time work. Crafting a scene, creating dialogue, building the tension between two characters…argh…heaven right now. The orgasmic joy, the unbelieveable thrill, the complete estacy (yes, I’m using some sexy words here but we’re romance writers, right?). The only thing better would be a good night’s sleep!

So, I’m not going to lament over this post, but will sign off ASAP to squeeze in some writing before I have to do school pickups. Hopefully the other school moms won’t misinterpret the glow on my face. Or if they do, who cares!

-Meg  (who does acknowlege that she used the words orgasmic and sex in this posting and doesn’t care if she’s too provocative- after all that’s why she’s put on Fridays-LOL)

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Chocolate or The Whip?

October 10, 2007 at 10:31 am | Posted in Bria, goals, motivation, rewards, writing | 2 Comments

I am incredibly self-competitive. The thing that motivates me is usually an internal factor — even when it’s an external factor.For example, I don’t mind losing to someone who is genuinely better than I am.

In college one of my close study-buddies was a poet. We’ve all heard how bad my poetry skills are, so when dear old JB would get his beautiful A in a poetry seminar, I’d still revel in my B+ (I mean, I was bad, this B+ had to be a pity grade). . . But heaven forbid he beat me out in Shakespeare or a straight writing class. Not because I needed to compete with him, but because I needed to compete with myself and he was my measuring tool.

Even the sports I enjoy the most aren’t team sports — running, hiking, tennis, track. . .the idea that letting myself down or pushing myself further than a team can is a driving factor in all of these.

Maybe that’s why my temperament is a fine fit for writing.I set my goals as far out there a I think is slightly reasonable — and then I run at them.

To me, a goal is like a commitment I made to myself. I would never let down someone I cared about if I made a commitment to them, so why would it be ok to let myself down.

So, my rewards are dangling carrots, they’re special treats. Instead of say, “If I do . . . . by. . . I can have . . .” I’m more prone to saying, “Wow! Well done Bria. That book you wanted? Go get it, you did superb on your latest goal.”

Of course, the reverse is true as well. When I don’t make a goal, if I look at it and can see I missed it because of something controllable, I give my self a stern talking to.

Everyone’s reward is different, but whatever it is, it’s at the end of your path, not the path you feel you should be on because it works for so and so.

Writing is such a solitary endeavor, no matter how many writing buddies you have. Knowing your temperament and what drives you to succeed is crucial. If it’s competing with someone else, competing with yourself, making someone proud, proving to someone you can, hitting an external deadline. . . whatever it is that drives you, search for it, and then harnesses it.

Of course, CHOCOLATE works too. I’d love to hear how you reward yourself.

Go Write
-bria 

And the Reward Goes To…

October 7, 2007 at 11:26 am | Posted in inspiration, Jessica, life, rewards, writing | Leave a comment

“The reward of a thing well done is to have done it.”
-Ralph Waldo Emerson

I have friends who have a pretty significant reward structure in place so they always have a carrot dangling out there to help drive them towards their figurative destinations. I’ve tried to motivate myself in this way but it just doesn’t seem to work. I tend to cave and indulge in the ‘something extra’ that was to serve as my reward.

As I reported last week, I am struggling with the whole concept of story. The manuscript I just finished feels as though it has less a story arc but rather follows the frenetic jerk of a polygraph – my ‘arc’ feels just a bit too jagged. And if I let it get to me, it robs me of the joy. So when it doesn’t feel as though the writing is going well, just about everything else feels yucky.

I’ve printed out this vexing manuscript of mine and have planted it in the middle of my kitchen table to serve as my constant reminder to mold and shape it. And the stack of paper cuts me both ways.

Knowing this tall stack needs so much work puts a bit of dread in the pit of my stomach. But when I pass by all those pages as I get ready for work or make my dinner or sort my mail, a little flicker of satisfaction sparkles in my insides. I wrote that. It may feel like a jumbled mess when I try to dissect it in my head, but it’s my mess.

And while there are times that I hate it, I also absolutely love it.

Seeing the pages stacked up is my reward. It may take a long time for me to arrange all the words necessary to accumulate the appropriate number of pages, but the finished product gives me a satisfaction like no other. Those reminders come few and far between, but if I can up my productivity I know I can positively affect that cycle.

Every word counts! So whether you write 10 minutes or 10 pages a day, do your thing and do it well! As Bria often reminds me, the reward will be in just doing it.

Have a great writing week!

And I hope you will join us tomorrow when our Honorary Heartlette for October, Linda Rettstatt, will be with us.

-Jessica

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