(kidding, I've been studying for, and taking The Final Fom Hell. That's right- that class wasn't completely over. I just didn't want to bog you guys down with the details; It would have just been more of the same, you know?)
Today I have arranged for a fantastic new friend of mine to stop by and say hi. I met her a few weeks ago, through 20-something bloggers, and I liked her immediately. Not only is she a terrific writer and storyteller, but she is also a crazy cat lady. Already. And they aren't even hers.
Plus, she is clever. And I love clever people. I think I'm hoping that if I hang out with enough of them, maybe some of it will rub off on me...?
But without further ado, here is Guinever, who writes This Is Not My Day Job.
Much thanks to Helena for letting me come over from This Is Not My Day Job to talk about action in 2011!
It’s the time of year to talk New Years’ resolutions. But I like the idea of talking about actions better. I’ve resolved many times to give up soda, but I still drank a Coke today. “Actions” seems not only less passive, but also like a bright shiny new thing. Five-hour-long meetings that ended with a vending machine raid do not yet tarnish the word “Actions”.
These are the actions I’m planning to take in 2011:
1. I’ll take at least three writing classes and join a writer’s group. I have a dream, you see, of being a published novelist. Putting the words on the page isn’t a problem.
I’m compulsive in my desire to write, and anyway, if I stop writing my husband asks if maybe I’d like to help him do the dishes.
What can be a problem is writing something for everyone else. Every story begins as something that I want to write for me. When I show it to someone else, the questions begin to pop up.
“But what do the squirrels symbolize?” “Do you really think you need to
use the word defenestration in a children’s story?” “I have a hard time buying this, could you illuminate a little more why your main character is afraid of escalators?”
People, escalators are scary. They can eat your toes.
When other people read my work, sometimes I feel like a misunderstood teenager. Did you even read it? I clearly explain about the squirrels!
Writing is easy, translating one’s thoughts isn’t, always. But you can’t explain to the reader (unless you corner your husband while he is doing the dishes), and the reader is never wrong. Unlike your parents.
So not just writing, but learning to write better, is the endless task of the writer.
2. I’ll foster more cats. I volunteer for the SPCA as a foster parent, which means that I take in new cats with random bad habits, like scratching my week-old Crate and Barrel sofa, and then teach them other bad habits, like how tasty Popeye’s fried chicken is.
Also, it means that occasionally I get to the gym, open my bag, and discover that someone is terribly, terribly confused about where the litter box is, to the detriment of my spin class.
Honestly, the worst part is falling in love with a furry little face and then saying goodbye, when someone else loves that face and takes them home. But this is the little thing I do to make the world a better place.
I get road-ragey, I eat meat, I watch reality shows – in many ways, I am Part of the Problem. But at least I help save a few kitties, one at a time.
Even if it hurts.
Even if I have to slipcover my scratched-up $2000 sofa.
3. I’m not going to say that I’m going to lose ten pounds. Let’s just say this: I’ll train for another marathon (I’ve done the 26.2 routine twice now, but each time, it’s just as staggering and ridiculous a proposition).
I’ll save the soda for really desperate situations
– say, meetings over three hours and the Harry Potter movies (Seriously, why did I go watch a movie in the theaters that doesn’t have an ending?).
And I will try to throw some weights around in the gym at least twice a week. I will also try not to be freaked out by the fact that the weights room seems to be populated by the Jersey Shore cast.
So those are my actions – three concrete things I can do to make myself, and my world, a little bit better.
What actions are you taking in 2011?