May was a very busy month. I spent eight days at a Print On Demand (POD) workshop, another four days in Missoula at MISCON for a writer’s conference, and my sister came for a brief visit last weekend. I’ve learned how to use InDesign software, designed covers and interiors for my books, learned about the differences between fonts you use on covers and fonts you use between the covers, attended panels on world building, plotting, dystopias and utopias, and how to snark up my characters. I attended a class on how to tail someone without being spotted, officially set up my writing business (with a separate checking account, and business license) here in Oregon, and last; but by no means least, I completed two short stories and submitted them to professional markets.
On the down side, I didn’t make my writing quota this month; not by a large margin. I put the time in this month, and accomplished much of what I needed to get done, but the words don’t lie. I didn’t meet my daily quota. I didn’t make my writing goal. I barely blogged at all, and wrote only 11 thousand new words on my latest manuscript. My average daily word count was about 525 (against my new goal of 2000 words per day). Ugh.
I don’t feel like a failure though. I’ve learned a lot, accomplished a lot, and am finding my way around my new community. My writing goals help focus and prioritize my efforts, but writing is not the only thing in my life. I also recognize the value of getting away from the writing desk from time to time. The roses started blooming last week, and this weekend, my sister and I visited the Portland International Rose Test Garden and Japanese Garden. Blue skies, balmy weather, the delightful scent of roses, and a couple of turkey sandwiches made for a great afternoon. Sometimes, you’ve just got to stop and smell the roses.