Monday, February 18, 2013


It seems like only yesterday that I was flashing self-portrait shots of myself clutching an allegedly finished manuscript of a second book…

But it wasn’t yesterday; it was nearly a year ago, and perhaps you’re wondering what gives.  (And if you are, then that makes two of us.)

You know, it’s funny the way no one ever remembered what my second book was about, and equally funny how I could never come up with a title for it.  If I ever again find myself in a position of trying to force an unnamed book that no one can remember into completion, then please, by all means, direct me to this blog entry and offer me the option to learn from my past and get out while I’m ahead.

The book was not particularly well reviewed during the first round, arguably even more poorly received five months later after a complete overhaul, and four months after the picture above was taken – months spent starting from the beginning and gutting most of what I had – I gave it to two friends and, well, neither of them ever mentioned it to me again.  That was six months ago and I know you may find this hard to believe, but even I can eventually take a hint.

So the untitled second book of forgettable subject matter has been tabled indefinitely, for revival later in life (or maybe not at all; WHO KNOWS).

Remember how we set the goal to spend 2013 giving 60%?  There was another part of the Newsweek article that inspired our lackluster efforts that I want to bring up:  when working on long-term goals, it’s important to keep working, even if that work winds up being sub par.  The article’s case-in-point was Jerry Seinfeld who, early in his career, set himself the goal of writing jokes every day.  It wasn't always much, but the point was to come up with something every single day, and every day he did, he put a little “x” on his calendar.  The focus, then, wasn't on the overwhelming goal of "making it big," but on the much more tangible goal of "not breaking the line of x's."

Translating this as literally as humanly possible, if things have been a little scarce around here, it’s because starting earlier this month, I’ve had a string of x’s on my own calendar that I’ve chained myself to.  New book, and we’ll just keep our fingers crossed that this one is more willing to work with me than its predecessor.

So happy x-marking to all of you!  And I hope you are not too emotionally traumatized after the season finale of Downton Abbey last night.  I am in mourning, both because of the plotline and because I now have nothing to look forward to on Sunday nights.

(It’s a wretched and difficult life I lead, in which I am a slave to Sharpie x’s and have to wait long, cruel months between seasons of imported British television period dramas.  Speaking of which, I could say so much…SO MUCH…but last time I said so very little and still managed to spoil poor Sam, so all I will say today is that holy hell, over the past three weeks Branson has become my new favorite thing about this show.  Is it Season 4, yet?!)


  1. I hope one day to read your second book but in the meantime I look forward to reading your third.. But second... But third!

    Jam now 6 eps into Downton abbey so I have seen one big episode (and omg!!!)

    I might finish the season tomorrow now... I'm intrigued now. It gets more shocking?

    1. Hahaha, I can't wait to share my second/third book and maybe when it's done, I'll be ready to fix up the third/second book! (Fingers crossed!)

      OMG, YES!!!! It is CRAZY what happens at the end of the season!! I can't wait to hear what you think. I'm already in withdrawal thinking about the long months of waiting ahead...

      And regarding the one big episode, not since Buffy's mom died have I cried that much over a television show. They sure do know how to break our hearts. :'(

  2. As long as it is a YA novel about a dystopian future I'm sure it will do just fine :)

    - Beej

  3. I really wanted to read that book. But maybe I'll get ovet it if I get to reed your next one soon :-) No pressure, though, haha!

    And yes, I believe in the x-marking. Great tip! (who knew Seinfeld could share actual, useful information?!). What woudl be the strategy if you need to multitask, though? Does that mean that if you have a few things to do, you have to put down multiple x's, or can you go for just one big one each day you did some of the things you're supposed to? Maybe my thing for today will be coming up with a solution to that ;-)

    1. Hahaha, such a good point about Seinfeld coming up with something useful! :D

      Excellent question about multitasking (you can tell I'm a person prone to getting stuck on one thing, seeing as how that never even crossed my mind!)...hmmm...if you come up with a solution for that one, please let me know. (I'd probably wind up doing multiple x's, in different colors. ;))

    2. YES! DIFFERENT COLORS!!! Why didn't I think of that?! That is the obvious answer! Maybe I'll get a whole knew calender and start to lay out a color coding scheme. Like, green for job applications, purple for writing fun stuff, blur for writing boring stuff, yellow for writing e-mails, red for writing have-to-stuff, etc etc. And that's my thing to do for today and when it's done I'll mark it off in my current calender?! Effectiveness is my name :-D

    3. Sounds AWESOME! Now I want to add more colors to my calendar...and today's the first of the month! Perfect day to start!!