Finish Fatigue

So I’m on the final page of my novel, just a few more lines to write.  So why can’t I write them?

Sure, I’ve lived with this story for the last few years and I am sure I will spend the better part of a year revising it.  I know it’s not over, but I can’t seem to finish it.

The finality of the first draft has me second guessing everything in the chapter.  My brain is already working on the next novel (taking a break from this draft before the next one).  Every morning I open up the Word doc, fiddle over some slight correction and then proceed to goof off, watch TV or play a video game, anything but write.

This fatigue coincides with the summer slowdown in the garden.  I spent hundreds of hours prepping the garden and getting it up and going only to half-way abandon it now that it doesn’t need constant attention.  I know I need to prune my tomato plants, harvest the cucumbers early to make pickles and cut back the blackberry canes before they grow over the roofline (too late).  I just don’t have the energy.  That’s not true.  I just don’t have the motivation.

Writing and gardening are not activities that we do when the mood strikes us.  It has to be a regular thing or else our stories dry up and our gardens are overrun with weeds.

When I get fatigued in either project it helps to do something, anything.  In writing, this blog gives me the extra push I need to keep on writing.  In gardening, I finish something, anything.  In this case, I made some blackberry jam.  It’s ridiculously easy to do.  Now I have finished writing something and I have enough jam for the winter I have a sense of accomplishment that urges me to do a little more.

Quitting is so easy to do, but so is finishing a small thing.  Hauling in a big harvest gives that sense of accomplishment that finishing a good story does.  And with that comes a different sort of fatigue.  It’s that kind of tired that precedes a long and satisfying sigh followed by a 12 hour nap.  Can’t we all use that kind of finish fatigue?

To Blog or not to Blog

To Blog or not to Blog

How many times have you opened a blog only to find an excuse?  You know, one of those ‘I don’t have anything to say’, ‘here’s a repost from my buddy’ or some silly emoticon winking ‘have a nice day’.  I see them all too often and I can tell from the opening paragraph that nothing worth reading is going to be read.

I can’t stand those posts.

I told myself I’d never post a meaningless blog and if I didn’t have anything to say, I’d just keep quiet.

Sooo, I’ve been pretty quiet lately.  But it got me to thinking about spring planting in the garden.  Just because I can grow something doesn’t mean I should actually grow it.  I’m sure I could grow the hell out of some brussel sprouts but do I really need the gas pains?

And growing corn, is it worth the time and effort of planting, watering, weeding, fighting off the crows to harvest 12 ears of corn when I can get 10 ears of corn for a dollar at Kroger?

But then again, gardening isn’t just about saving money.  My corn might cost three bucks an ear by the time I harvest them, but I know exactly what I’m eating.  There is also that visceral joy one feels when you bite into something from your back yard.

And just because I don’t mind eating a spotty apple doesn’t mean anyone else would.  The mere act of writing a blog doesn’t mean someone has to read it.  It needs to serve a purpose, just like every character and every scene should mean something to the story.  Otherwise it’s just filler, and in the garden, all the filler ends up buried or in the compost pile.

In 2013, I have promised not to post crap.  That means I may not post much this year.  But what I do put up should be worth a look.

Thanks for reading.

April Platform Challenge Day 22 to 29

 

 

 

Day 22

 

For the challenge today I am to become a guest blogger.  So I have to find someone with a blog (preferably a newbie like me) and convince them to let me rant and rave on their site.

 

As soon as I find that sucker, I’ll let you know.

 

 

Day 23

 

Manage your time.  In other words, set a schedule for when you will blog and stick to it.  Now that will go well for my ‘heaven’ blog.  I plan on writing fifteen to twenty blogs before going live with it.  I want to have a good collection of topics on hand in case life gets in the way of writing.

 

Day 24

 

Another Twitter group fest.  I passed on it this week.  Spring is here and the garden won’t plant itself.

 

Day 25

 

Is get an interview.  Yeah, I’ll wrap that one in with the guest blog sometime in the future.

 

Day 26

 

This day I am to write another blog and have some call for action with it.  A repeat of last weeks challenge.

 

Day 27

 

Brewer is nuts.  For day 27 he wants us to join another social media site like Pinterest, Goodreads or RedRoom.  I can’t do it, at least not now.  I have a site I’m an admin on that I have been neglecting and I belong to another writing group in the Flash Factory on Zoetrope, that I have ignored while doing this challenge.  Okay, I’ll admit I used the challenge to slack off from writing and allow myself to wander the net looking at hundreds of other blogs.

 

Frankly, none of the other blogs interest me in the least.  Even my own blog sucks.  It’s just me doing what some other shmuck says.  Sure his advice is helpful but I’m not joining another site that I will rarely visit and eventually end up forgetting my user id or password.

 

 

Day 28

 

Another repeat, comment on someone else blog and link it back to you.

 

Day 29

 

Now this one is a good challenge.  Plan out May.  Makes sense to me.  After doing all this platform building it would be a shame to let it all lapse into inactivity.  So my main goal is to find two or three blogs to follow and develop some inter-connectivity to it.  It would be great if I can find someone on this challenge to do that with, but I’m not counting on it.

 

April Platform Challenge Day 21

In the spirit of creating all these social media sites that I have very little chance of keeping tabs on all of them without quitting my job and having a USB cord plugged into the back of my head, along comes the solution.

HootSuite.  A site that helps you manage all the other sites at once.  I’ve heard of this before and planned on utilizing it in the future.  Well the future is now and I can see myself in the HootSuite on a daily basis.

April Platform Challenge Day 20

For today I need to work up a calendar for my social networking.  I can see where this is needed to keep readers…um reading.  I follow a few blogs and it is important to keep the content flowing, or else I stop following.

To be honest, I’m not going to set a calendar up right now.  I’m still getting my feet wet with this blog.  When my heaven blog goes live I plan on having a dozen blogs written (longer than the) and a schedule or calendar to go with it.

April Platform Challenge Day 18

April Platform Challenge Day 18

The challenge for day 18 is a little tougher.  It’s all about SEO (search engine optimization) or “what gets your website to display at or near the top of a search on Google, Bing, Yahoo, etc.”

So I have to come up with keywords to describe my blog.  And there’s the rub, what is this site about really?  Is it just about me and my struggle/dream to be a writer?  Am I here to offer sage advice to other writers?  Is this a diary where everything goes?  Or am I here just to promote myself and my writings?

To be honest, this blog is primarily a tool to promote myself, my stories, my book (in progress) and my other blog.  So I suppose this apdiggs.WordPress.com is really a hub for all the other things I have going on.  The other blog is primarily to talk about heaven, which is what my novel is about.

What I have discovered today is that my tags, titles, headers and all that plays a big part in SEO.  I Googled ‘Platform Challenge’ and a few bloggers came up (after MNIB of course) and I noticed their blog titles were “April Platform Challenge” whereas my titles were ‘Day One’.

So I’m going to edit my headers and see if anything changes.  Of course my blog is brand new with a handful of followers but let’s see what happens.

Meantime, I need to set this blogs’ keywords as APDiggs, writing, blogging, etc…