I’m speeding right along with the November Writing challenge– staying on track with a blog a day and keeping up with my daily word count for the novel challenge.
I’ve picked up a number of new followers for this blog. (Welcome!) I’m finding it a lot of fun and sometimes pretty challenging to post every day. I hope my content continues to evolve as I explore different topics, getting closer to writing the blog I really want to write.
My current word count for the novel challenge is 32,633 words. I’m over halfway to the 50,000 word goal and still see this story going in so many different directions. I have a feeling I’ll be closer to 100,000 words before I’m done and ready to start editing.
Plot points are developing and the focus changing as I suddenly find secondary characters more interesting to write about. This free form writing has been really liberating and is pretty exciting. Sometimes I’ll go off in a direction and the words seem to pore out. When I’m done writing that day, I think, Wow, where did that come from?
The biggest thing is that I’m almost to the point where I feel comfortable saying, I’m a writer. I’ve loved writing since I was a kid but I’ve always allowed everything else to take priority over it. Stupid mistake.
I know I have a voice and stories to tell. Maybe I’m finally on to something.
A writer writes. A writer creates. A writer creates worlds where none existed. When a writer completes something. It’s theirs and theirs alone. That is, until it is shared. When it’s shared, the readers become owners and the ones that give it life. No two people experience the world of a novel the same way. It’s pretty fascinating.
From the moment I wake up every morning my head is full. A song is playing in my head, a current event, my to do list, a dream, a person, a thought, an idea, a wish…. and they all take their turns circulating through, sometimes going head to head– sometimes waiting for their turn to be the focus, front and center in my brain.
There are a dozen things rushing forward that I want to do, can do or should do… a dozen things I want to write about, each one lighting another thought or idea; that new spark taking me down a different road.
“Sometimes I think my head is so big because it is so full of dreams.”
― John Merrick
You can probably tell, I don’t get bored too often. I do sometimes get frustrated trying to balance my thoughts and activities with the time I think I have to do them. Many of my thoughts relate to creativity with the back of my brain being filled with hundreds, if not thousands of partially thought out, half-developed ideas. Ideas that I’m not ready to put down on paper yet. Eventually, though, I do want to get them out of my head.
How much can our three pound brain handle? I looked it up. Various sources claim we each have somewhere between 12,000 and 70,000 thoughts per day. If accurate, those are some pretty incredible numbers.
My ideal (and unrealistic) solution would be to hook my brain up to a computer to output all my ideas into different files that I could sort, develop and then publish. I’ve found working on the novel and blog every day this month has helped me to get out of the habit of editing myself so much– as I go. My biggest challenge is getting the ideas out of my head first, fine tuning them later. I think so much faster than I type, so thoughts get lost.
My problem is that I like the details too much. If I can force out the original idea first, I think the important details will be triggered in my brain when I go back to edit and embellish.
I found a supposed, health site where people contribute their own diagnosis’ to people’s questions and there were some pretty interesting responses to this subject. Most suggested that if your head is constantly full of thoughts competing for your focus, you are either ADD or Bipolar. A few suggested it was a positive sign of a high IQ or high-functioning brain capacity. Suggested solutions beyond: seek medical attention, included: smoke pot or drink alcohol; drink caffeine; do yoga or meditate. I had to laugh.
I included the above paragraph, more for amusement than anything. I do want to comment though. That sampling of responses show, what I view as a significant problem in today’s society: label and medicate. Forget understanding, taking responsibility or control; don’t even try to change behavior or learn to harness it– make it a disorder and shove pills down its throat. That’s the answer to everything and it’s pathetic. I’m not putting down or trying to embarrass anyone that needs assistance. It’s just that in today’s society, there is no try when you can alter with medication instead.
Why do we have to consider thinking too much as a problem? Thinking sparks ideas, leading to innovations, actions and results. Not thinking leads to… well, what exactly? Not originality. Not creativity. Not solutions.
I’ll writing more on this later— but right now… something else is invading my brain. <wink>
No, I hate other people driving.
Does anyone take a driving test anymore?
I’m that person that screams when they drive. I swear, I can’t even drive around the block without some idiot pissing me off.
So, I’ve decided I need to pitch my idea for a new TV show to the networks. So You Think You Can Drive is sure to be the next big thing.
It’s another reality-competition show BUT no gets eliminated each week. Instead, competing drivers will square-off in a difficult, new challenge in each episode and be ranked based on their performance.
The catch is…. they’re really competing for the title of World’s Worst Driver.
The challenges will include some pretty daunting tasks. Like– driving the speed limit. Using a turn signal. Driving the right direction on a one-way street. My favorite is, of course, the most difficult… Driving one full mile without texting, talking on the phone, eating, putting on make up or — and this is the most challenging…. reaching down to feel around for that thing that just fell on the floor.
I think it will be an epic hit!
Of course all the stereotypes will be represented: Old lady that never drives over 10 mph, Drunk guy, Texting teen, Revoked license guy, Girl that’s always late for work, Bus driver on a controlled substance, Clueless singing preppie, Woman with too many kids in the car, I break at every street sign person and I break for wind man.
The show will be interactive, so viewers can tweet live comments on air, most of which will have to be censored; mirroring what they’d be saying if they were following the competitors on the open road.
I think viewers will vote too. The winner will have their car crushed by one of those big compactors, their license revoked by a real (retired) police officer and they’ll get a permanent tattoo on their forehead (preferably with a rusty needle) of World’s Worst Driver.
It will be bigger than Honey Boo Boo….
That is, before the child molester-thing.
A week ago we were blessed with a new addition to our family. Dudley is an AKC English Bulldog, fawn and white, weighing just over 17 pounds. He’s 9 weeks old now and a cuddly teddy bear. So far, he gets along wonderfully with our other furry kids, although Collins (our cat) has pretty much kept his distance.
Lord Dudley loves to explore. He loves to romp through the leaves and crawl under things.
His new sister, Belle, couldn’t be happier to have a new playmate. The two of them are constantly wrestling around— which is especially funny as Belle is growing by leaps and bounds. Belle loves to stand over him like an umbrella.
Cash prefers to sniff and lick Dudley’s ears… a lot.
His name has two Broadway connections, the main one being an obscure reference from the musical Mame. The second is from the musical, Something’s Afoot.
Though I doubt, Dudley will be appearing on stage anytime soon, he is certainly a little show off. In less than a week he’s stolen everyone’s hearts.
It’s 3:00 AM, no traffic and I pull into the empty parking lot. I park up front in the first spot close to the door. I approach the door that glides open, revealing a clean, quiet shopping metropolis just waiting for me. I nod, or say Good Morning, to the familiar faces of employees, busily stocking shelves and taking inventory as I move quickly through aisle after uncrowded aisle gathering the items on my list. Something in the produce department not on the shelf? No problem. There’s someone there, willing to get it for me from the back. The only other shopper in the store– and I swear, he’s there every time I go at this hour– is an older gentleman using one of those electric mobility scooters. I go to self check out, scan my items as a friendly cashier rushes over to assist and engage in a little small talk as they help bag my items. Then I’m done. This is the only way to shop!
I do most of my shopping at a local super store chain (grocery and department store combined) in the early morning hours and I love it! It’s a quiet, quick and efficient use of my time. I can do a full grocery shop and browser through the other departments (and always the pet aisles) in about an hour.
This particular chain has a great phone app that allows me to clip manufacturer coupons, store coupons and incentives AND form a shopping list for a quick and easy shopping experience. Store coupons (or sales) and manufacturer coupons are stackable for additional savings. If for some reason the coupon or discount doesn’t come up at the register, there’s always someone there to quickly correct it, no questions asked.
My receipt shows me my total combined savings over regular retail prices– and so far this year, I’ve saved over $2,800! I love this place.
That is, I love this place at 3:00 AM.
Yesterday, I went at 11:30 AM. What was I thinking? The store was crowded with typical shoppers that have no concern or awareness of anyone but themselves. Kids are screaming, wandering shoppers leave their carts blocking aisles; and I have to wait for the two retired gentlemen to wake up from their conversation about how bad the Bears are this year and move out of the way.
Oh yeah, the reason I had to go at this normal hour was two fold: There were two, one day-only coupons I wanted to use; and I needed to have a quick adjustment done on my eye glasses at the little in-house vision center. (If only they were open at 3 AM!)
I got my glasses fixed at the front of the store and headed into the chaos. Swerving, dodging and taking detours, I navigated my way around the myriad of confused shoppers blocking my path.
The special coupons I had were for 40% off a men’s outerwear and an accessory item. I wanted to get Michael a new heavy duty coat for work and for shoveling snow at home. I found a good Dickies brand coat under a sign that said Men’s Outerwear and 20% off. Perfect. The discounts would stack and I would get the $80 coat for about $38. I also picked up a pair of gloves, already 30% off, plus the extra 40% off.
Avoiding the crowded aisles, I headed to the back perimeter aisle to head over to the pet department. As I was passing through, I found some pet toys on final clearance, 90% off. As I was picking out a few, I happened to glance to my right. In the distance, coming towards me down the aisle was my 3 AM friend on his scooter. )Why was he here now?) Seconds after I spotted him, a woman on her cell phone crashed her cart into the side of his scooter. He wasn’t hurt but I’d bet he was a sailor in his youth, if you get my drift.
I was nearly done with my shopping and headed to pick up my fridge and freezer items, not yet too annoyed by all the people– I reach the dairy section to find: No whole milk. How does a store that size have no whole milk? They barely had any 2% milk, either but I refuse to buy that anyway. (Sugar is added to 2% milk to replace the fat, actually making it less healthy for you!)
So then, I move through the meat section, which apparently, at noon is a social gathering spot; reach the produce section to find the bagged, chopped salad shelves empty too. This really wasn’t going well.
I headed toward the registers to check out and in the center aisle where they display sale merchandise, I found the large jars of peanut butter on sale for $1.49 if you bought eight. Well, eight is a lot but it has a long shelf life; and we go through a lot of it with the dogs. Sell by date was October 2016, so in the cart it went. Shopping done– just had to pay.
I’m not sure if any of this is annoying or amusing enough for anyone to continue reading–BUT– it took me 45 minutes just to check out!
45 minutes to check out in an empty, self-scan checkout lane!
Well since you asked….
The peanut butter was really on sale for $4.99 not $1.49. I had to go get the sign to show them their mistake… They gave it to me for the lower price… but it took almost 15 minutes just to change the price in the computer, for me to get it at the posted price. Then the register wouldn’t give me the extra 40% off on the coat because it was work wear not just outerwear that they claim was excluded– but not listed on the app coupon OR the text message, I’d received. This was what got me in the store at that ungodly hour. I made them take it off my tally, I wasn’t paying that much. (The guy that had gotten in line behind me was sighing loudly and cussing under his breath at this point.) Then the gloves? Same thing. Only they couldn’t claim a reason why I wasn’t entitled to the discount, so that took even longer to figure out. The original attendant had just gone on break… and the replacement didn’t know how to do price adjustments. Suddenly, every self checkout was at a stand still because every one needed assistance. I was never more relieved to finally get out of a store in my life!
This is exactly why I try to only shop off hours or online as much as possible.
That would be the end of the story… except– stupid me, I forgot eggs. When I got home and started to make meatloaf, I discovered we were completely out of eggs. You can’t make meatloaf without them.
So— I was forced to drive to the nearby grocery– that I hate with a passion– just to get eggs. (I won’t name any names but the store’s a real gem.) And yes, it took me almost a half hour just to buy a carton of eggs.
P.S. — The meatloaf was delicious! <wink>