Self-Assessment

This and next week, I’m taking lots of online classes. A Facebook writer’s group I belong to, Write Without The Fight, has a series this week that will help us blast through those times we just can’t write. There are lots of theories why we “get” Writer’s Block. I might agree we’re procrastinating; and it’s usually out of fear. Fear of not being good enough. Fear of not writing well, not being liked, etc. stops a lot of people. By my point in life, that doesn’t matter anymore. 

Our questions were twofold; What kind of creative thinker are you?; and what kind of thinker are you? “What,” you say? I say it depends on what I’m doing. Why?

As a retired systems analyst, I received calls to Mutual of Omaha in the middle of the night. There would be a problem over a program ending abnormally. I had to be a divergent thinker (full of ideas). We needed to think fast; get the program going again. I can go back home to sleep.

Working on something I’m unfamiliar with, I had to be a slower thinker. Assessing what the program was doing. And why. Looking where we might make a change. Then test the results before having Operations do their thing.

I’d do some convergent analysis. Work at a slow pace. Think things through. I took a few perfect places to insert the fix. I needed to get home. The kids needed to get up for school. I would get ready to go back to work, in full business work attire – showered, suit, pantyhose, blouse tucked in, hair and makeup done. One memorable night, I went to bed at 11:30 p.m.; they called me at midnight; I went to the office and returned home at 6 a.m. Short night for sure.

As a “retiree,” and now an author, a woman who created her own publishing company, her own daily blog, and soon to release a children’s book, I use my brain in creative endeavors, until it comes to the business part of my life. Then, well, it’s all business.

I can’t wait to hear about today’s class, at 2 p.m.; Name the Unnameable. Thy name is Writer’s Block? My personality kind of shuns the trendy things, writer’s block being one thing I sort of doubt. What keeps me from writing? Time, most of the time. And chronic pain, when I just can’t sit in my office chair anymore. Oh, I can go to the recliner. It’s not isolated from everyone (the dogs, the Babe), and what they’re doing.

I write better when I’m at my seat, feeling the creative vibes of my studio/office. It’s my safe place for sure. Just like the old Beach Boys song, “In My Room.” Being the only girl, I had my own room. My sanctuary. My hurts were left at the door, and I’d enter a world where I drew, designing clothes, wrote plays for my girlfriend Karen and I to act out, and wished all the stuff teenage girls wished.

Now, in the Home Office, my quilting studio, my writing and business office, I dream, design quilts and stories, and get ready to tell the world my stories. There’s always a story. Make yours a good one. I will, too. Thanks for reading today; time to go pick up groceries. The fridge looks like one in a single guy’s apartment. Bare! See you tomorrow!

Creative Souls

While having morning coffee and thinking about my meeting with Cartney McGuigan yesterday, I recalled part of our conversation where she was explaining to me how she does her art. She told me her brain just takes off, and it happens. That’s exactly how it is in my creative zone. Since I do several things besides write, and I know exactly what she means. We couldn’t explain it with words. I know what she’s trying to say. You can’t explain it. But someone else can understand it. So cool, isn’t it? I had such a good time connecting with her over our book. More fun to come!

I have enough information for planning my creative endeavors for the year. I can now make a loose plan for every month. I believe I’ll start at the end and go backwards from there. I need to schedule some “play” too. Before I started writing, I joined a quilters group determined to “bust UFO’s.” Unfinished Objects (quilting projects, to be exact). The idea is, we make a random list of twelve projects we haven’t finished. You see creative minds just kind of wander sometimes. Some say Adult ADHD causes that. I’m not sure of that. 

I could do a UFO sheet for embroidery, quilting, clothing construction, painting, and reading many of the books I want to read. I pray I still have my vision and ability to move both hands. I could still do the things I love to do. Mom’s vision diminished terribly with her strokes, and I see what a struggle that is for her. It’s awful.

So along with eating better, (I’ve lost 25 pounds since October 2020), I’m making a commitment to my creativity by managing my time and projects better. I’ll get more accomplished every day. I will make a dent in my UFO pile. More book ideas are floating in my head. I need to make some notes about. It’s how my brain works. I’m just going to work with it, not fight it.

I absolutely LOVE the Michael Strahan quote above. He is one of the most positive people on earth. I admire how he’s lived his life, devoted to his kids. Not a lot of famous people are. It goes back to how his parents raised their family. He’s continuing that tradition with his family. Great to see. Anyway, one of my imaginary ideas is to have him interview me for GMA when my books are selling like hotcakes! Great idea, eh?

As I’m preparing to do our taxes today and tomorrow, that is the ONLY look backwards I’m taking. I get to deduct a lot this year for my writing expenses. Right now, it’s still considered a hobby, so it’s ok to do that. I’ll be doing a lot of sorting papers, but that allows for your mind to wander. Good ideas can happen then. I look forward to it.

Stay warm if you’re in Nebraska’s deep freeze. It’s terrible. We are going to a Valentines dinner and dance at the Post, but it’s so cold I think staying home sounds better! (Not really, it’ll be nice). Be Safe out there. Wear your masks. Watch out for black ice, too. It can get you even while walking. Thanks for reading, I’ll see you tomorrow!