May 21st, 2007

book cover

Ya Think?

There are so dang many smart, insightful, visionary, funny, creative, witty writers out here in cyberspace that I could pretty much plant myself in front of the ol' screen and read blogs until my eyes bled. (Don't act like you don't know what I'm talking about.)

One of my daily reads is the amazing HipWriterMama, and she is all that, I assure you. She submits weekly lists of strong girl role models in children's literature, she writes hilarious and touching parenting posts, she shares her efforts and anxieties on the road to becoming the famous author she's sure to be. 

But my favorite bits are her generous urgings to the rest of us to make goals, get inspired and empower ourselves. Vivian's a one-woman high priestess, cheerleading squad, teaching team and fire-starter all rolled into one. 

So, suffice it to say that when she calls my blog a thinker, I get all pink and swoony. Sometimes I feel like I'm barely awake, much less thinking. But thanks, HipWriterMama!

My job now is to tell ya'll about some other thinkers.  So here goes, with the hopes that these aren't repeats:

When I was in college, I worked for a couple of years for the University News Service, mostly creating newsletter calendars and other decidedly low-brow journalism, but occasionally getting tossed some plumb little piece of work. I also got to brush up against all sorts of Real (capital R) Writers (capital W), including Jackie Mitchard who later became the author of some very big deal novels. As a person, I remember thinking she struck the perfect balance between smart, funny and warm, and I think her blog does that, too.

I love reading Mad Woman in the Forest from Laurie Halse Anderson. It is intimate and generous and specific and funny and experiential and seriously, I mean seriously thinkin'.

Fussbucket is a newish parenting blog and what I admire most is the brutal honesty here. I like that these mamas aren't just trying to look good to the rest of us slouches...

And same with Mombo's From the Mom Zone

I'm only allowed to list four, but there's a bunch of other seriously wise nogginheads out there. You know who you are.

Goal Setting

As I said in a previous post, Vivian at HipWriterMama is the queen of butt-kicking inspiration. She can get you to say just about anything and believe it. 

So, in a reckless mood last week or the week before, I declared that, starting today, I'd work at least 30 minutes a day every day on one of my three works-in-progress. 

I'm well aware this may sound something between lame and pathetic since I'm, y'know, a writer. 
But bear in mind that me wee babes will be getting of school for the summer on Thursday. 


For the summer. 

I'm thinking that 30 minutes a day might just feel like that hill ol' Sisyphus faced.

And let's not even nod our knowing heads over the irony that my elder daughter's home sick with the stomach bug today. Today being the day I intend to launch this grand plan.

Sigh. I sensed a rough start.

But shucks if I didn't just do it! 

Tired little sick girl and I lay down for naps, and when I woke, I sat at my desk and took one of my new picture book manuscripts from point A to at least point L. Maybe even R! I kid you not. 

I ignored the pile of laundry on the futon behind me. 
I pretended that the pile of to-dos falling against my left wrist was a comfort. 
I didn't answer the phone. 

And I didn't write for 30 minutes, I wrote for 49. 

Rough start be damned. 

Tomorrow I'm banking on more of the same, only this time I'm shutting down Outlook when I start.
No more lookie lookie at those tempting little envelopes popping up at the bottom of my screen. 
I'm thinking you know what I mean...