#MonsterWritingWeekend and Photo Round Up

I started the weekend by agreeing to participate in a monster writing weekend with AJ Rose and Kate Aaron. I did pretty well until Sunday morning, when I looked at the WIP and said, “Hell, no! Need a break.”

I have come to the conclusion that if I force myself to write, all the fun goes out of it. So today (Sunday), I’m kicking back. I took more photos and processed several of them this morning. Then I plugged in my iPod and danced around the room for a while, followed by a tasty omelet for lunch. Tonight, I’m having dinner at R’s, followed by the next-to-last episode of this season’s Game of Thrones. I’m hoping for more fireworks, ’cause last week was great!

Am I writing at all today? Sure. But the big push is off. I’m writing because I want to, not to meet a word goal. 

That being said, I did get a lot written Friday and Saturday, but I don’t want writing to turn into my job. You know, something I have to do rather than enjoy doing. Setting a word goal and driving blindly toward it doesn’t jibe with my writing style at all. So, thanks, AJ and Kate for revealing this to me. 😉 I’ll return to my former system with relief while watching your tremendous output with amazement.

Saw a couple new creatures over the weekend, and of course I had to take pictures. This is an osprey. First time I’ve seen one. He perched at the very top of the dead tree. It was cloudy at the time, which is why the sky is so dull and washed out, and I was a fair distance away. Not the best pic, but there is some detail. Osprey 6.6.14 sm

 

Spotted this young fellow Friday night. I was looking out the windows at the canal and saw him picking his way along the opposite shore. I knew instantly he was a heron, but which kind? I looked him up: Little Blue. The pied blue indicates he’s a juvenile. Little Blue Heron 6.6.14 sm

Last night, after busting my head at the laptop writing all day, I took a glass of wine outside at dusk, sat in a comfy chair with Suki beside me, and simply enjoyed doing nothing. Black clouds started pushing their way in from the gulf, so I went in for my camera and got this shot. Canal at Dusk 6.6.14 sm

I realized something else this weekend. I achieved one of my most-cherished dreams when I moved back to Florida. I need to remember that by looking around more often. Work is necessary, writing quiets the voices in my head, but nature feeds my soul. It holds me in quiet thrall.

I need to explore more often, see what’s around that next bend. There is a lot to discover in this state; it’s very, very long. 🙂

 

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About Fenraven

Fenraven happily lives in south Florida, where it is really hot most of the year. Find him on Twitter, Google +, and Facebook by searching on 'fenraven'.
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30 Responses to #MonsterWritingWeekend and Photo Round Up

  1. Allison says:

    “There is a lot to discover in this state; it’s very, very long. 🙂 ” Thanks for the smiles, I needed that this morning. I love the Heron, he’s beautiful and so is your shot of him.

    Have a good day.

  2. Brandilyn says:

    So glad you didn’t push just to meet some arbitrary goal. Writing should be fun, if it isn’t stop (which you did). I see all these word count goals on my Facebook feed, and honestly, it makes me sad. Yes having an overall word count may give you something for which to shoot, but I don’t think it is the best way to get your best work (especially when ones starts beating themselves up for not making said count)… but I digress.

    I hope GoT (and R) lived up to your expectations last night. I hear it was a good one (not that I would know since I don’t watch).

    As usual, your storm cloud shot is my favorite. Yes, I know, I know, I am weird. I think we have long since established that fact.

    • Last night’s episode was the most boring one EVER. They devoted the entire hour to a battle for a castle. I was bored halfway through. The rest of the evening was fine, though. Ate dinner next to the pool while listening to the thunder and watching the storm.

      I think, if it works for an author to push themselves to meet a word count, that’s great. Turns out, that doesn’t work for me. I write when I’m on fire, when the voices are talking to me. Pushing past a certain point puts a funny feeling in my stomach.

  3. AJ Rose says:

    See, and I learned after the first time that the big goals make it more fun for me. So I’m glad we each got it figured out. 🙂

    Hope GoT was good.

    • It sucked. Heh. But yeah, I had to do it to find out. And I envy your ability to do this! I would love to crank out tons of pages in a weekend. Just not in the cards for me.

    • Brandilyn says:

      Are you a competitive person in general? It was fun watching your updates. Though the number updates were less important to me than your enthusiasm and emotions over breaking Myah.

      • AJ Rose says:

        I like competing less against other people than I do myself. Beating my high score in a game or upping my personal best is always euphoric for me.

        In the end, my word count doesn’t matter as much as the story, but the goal gives me the focus to reply buckle down and do it, not be satisfied with a 5k word day if I can do twice that. But I will also never compromise quality for quantity. And I showed that by stopping early Friday night when I couldn’t get the words right, and taking a break yesterday when it got too heavy and I needed to breathe.

      • Brandilyn says:

        I can respect that. I have never been competitive with myself or others. I want to do my best, but I think being the second child and second best no matter what I did growing up had the opposite effect on me than it would on most people, heh.

        You always produce an outstanding end product; recognizing when you need to step back for the sake of the words is exactly why. Unfortunately, I see too many authors making the other choice, and that is why the whole word count thing saddens me.

        Too often I see extraneous scenes or scenes that just don’t make sense, and you know they are there just to meet some word count.

  4. Helena Stone says:

    Loved the post and am fascinated by all the different approaches to writing. I’m still trying to figure out what (if anything) works for me but I’ll get there…probably.
    As always your pictures are breathtaking. What you call ‘not the best pic’ stunned me with its beauty although the dark clouds were my favourite.

    • The dark clouds pic turned out much better than expected. In some ways, I’m still trying to figure out how to write too. By no means do I have it down yet. I set a daily goal of 500-1000 words, depending on my workload, and prior to this last weekend, I didn’t write for almost two weeks. First, because I was prepping Wolf Bound for publication, and second, because I had a heavy editing load. While I try not to bury myself in work, sometimes it can’t be helped and then writing takes a back seat for a while. I also hit walls in the writing, and come to an abrupt stop. Often, I then set that story aside and turn to another. Right now, I have three WIPs in various stages of completion.

      I would write more if I didn’t have the EDJ, but for now, I need it. 🙂

      • Helena Stone says:

        That’s another thing I’m trying to get my head around; having more than one story on the go at any given time. But I may have to learn sooner rather than later since the story I’m trying to write is fighting me all the way and a story I didn’t even know I wanted to write until 48 hours ago is taking form in my head with startling clarity. Learning curves everywhere. I still think of it in terms of a hobby though and can’t quite take myself seriously (yet?).

        • I remember the first time I called myself a writer. Out loud. To someone else. 🙂 It wasn’t after I published the first story, or even after the second or third.

          Writing is too important to ever be a mere hobby, but I admit I don’t write full time. I can’t afford to. Still, I am a writer. You’ll reach that point one day, too.

  5. I wasn’t a part of the Monster Writing Weekend but I do the Monthly Word Challenge that Kate Aaron started in a group and I have to say it has been a godsend! I am competitive by nature so to resist a challenge is totally out of character. I didn’t really see this weekend as a challenge though. Because of the monthly writing word goal I have been able to push out 4 chapters in 9 days. My son, who is autistic, needs goals to thrive. It’s not forcing him, it’s grounding him. Yes, for some this isn’t a full time career and it should always be enjoyable I don’t doubt that. I need to be pushed. In the end I will be grateful and it will fuel me to continue to set goals for myself. In jobs and in school teachers and bosses are always pushing you to do better. It’s not torture, it’s so you can truly see what you are capable of. I loved this weekend. It showed writers like Kate and AJ that it helped tremendously and it showed Theo that this might not be the way to reach his goals. Either way it was a full on success!

    • 🙂 Thanks for the comment! I’m competitive by nature, but for some reason, that doesn’t work with my writing. Learning that was a good thing. Writing is not something I can push myself at. It has to happen in its own time and at its own speed. I admit I’m not happy about that–I’d rather get thousands of words out every time I sit at the laptop–but it ain’t gonna happen.

  6. Ginny Farnsworth says:

    I know they are not your ospreys, but the live RSPB pictures from Loch Garten are great just now, they have young. http://www.rspb.org.uk/reserves/guide/l/lochgarten/abernethyvideo.aspx

  7. Jaycee Edward says:

    Maybe my favorite post to date. I love that you are so at peace in your life and so centered. Enjoy.

  8. Patricia says:

    “….in quiet thrall.” Lovely. I admired the reflection of the young blue heron.

  9. Karen H says:

    Hi Theo, Wow so good to be reading your stuff again. Like you, I’ve been on the move on my move was north of the 49th parallel and I now reside in the prairies. I’ve missed out on much that has been going on my favourite websites and after a week long battle with the local phone/cable/internet provider we are finally connected again, so I am enjoying a bit of catch up. I love seeing your pictures again as always they are beautiful especially the dragonflies.

  10. diannegray says:

    The picture of that Heron is fantastic, Theo – I love the reflection.

    I can’t force the writing either and that’s why I’ve never joined one of those NaNoWriMo things (I think that’s the spelling) 😉

    • Same here. When it comes around, I’m always tempted to sign up. But then I realize I would be setting myself up to fail and resist. Guess I’ll have to keep doing it the only way I know how. Slow and steady.

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