Writing Journal 3.24.2020: Sorry for not posting for a while, here’s a cute picture of a dog

In case you were wondering, the dog in question is Winston (Winnie) Liegois, a shih tzu about… 10 years old now? He’s one of the most chill pups ever, and often likes to hang out with me when I’m writing, especially when my wife is not around. So, there you go.


I’ll keep the rest of this short.


The school closure I worried about is now in its second week. I just had a meeting with my bosses to see what was up and get things prepared for the weeks to come.


Look out everyone, quick political material here.


Our president insists that everyone is going to be back at work exactly the way it was in a couple of weeks. I have the feeling that I am going to be starting a long summer break.


My wife, who is a city manager in the new town where we will make our home, is essentially one of those first responders/essential personnel that they talk about in the news. It’s all uncharted territory for me and her.


The kids are bummed about having to curtail what they do, and I totally understand that. Worry about what is to come is common among those who have a lot more time on their hands than what they were expecting.


Anyway, as far as writing goes, I’ve been keeping busy on Project D (check here for more information). You can go here if you want to read it on Archive Of Our Own. Not too much else… but after a bit of a run on redoing one thing on my Project A, I want to start shopping that along as well, hoping that COVID-19 doesn’t mess up online book publishing, etc.


I’ll leave the stats below. They’re a bit better than last week’s, but not by much. I guess I was getting used to the hermit life under COVID-19. I’m going to try and write and revise mpre in the week to come. Stay safe and hope that all of you writers have some time to cut loose.


+2.590 words written.

Days writing: 5 of 7.

Days revising/planning: 2 of 7 for 60 total minutes.

Daily Writing Goals Met (500+ words or 30 minutes of planning/revisions): 6 of 7 days.

Writing Journal 3.16.2020: IRL issues kept me from writing, and IRL issues will give me more time to write. And so it goes.

[AUTHOR’S NOTE: I was going to write this Sunday, but IRL events (which I’ll explain) got in the way. Just follow along and all will be revealed.]


[AUTHOR’S NOTE #2: Today’s featured photo is my new copy of the Writer’s Market. Got it used for a decent price and it arrived yesterday.]


Well, this week was… productive and not productive. I’ve written something every day this week, although I have not reached my daily quota at any time during the week. The days have been tumultuous and exciting, but with a lot of waiting as well. (This is going to be a fairly personal blog, so bear with me.)


I now have a new home in the new community that I’ll be moving to soon. A ton of documents signed, but it is now officially ours. We’ve begun fixing a few things up and my wife intends to start living there at the end of the month. [As I mentioned before, I plan to move when they school year ends (haha) and we hope to sell our old home eventually.


So, I’m dealing with that, writing, the impending graduation of my son from tech school (heating and air conditioning program) and my daughter from high school, wrapping up the last couple of months of my old job, among other items on the plate… when something comes up.



My son’s school is shut down for two weeks, just as he’s getting ready to get his certification.

My daughter’s school is likely to cancel for the next four weeks, so her spring break is going to be a lot longer than we expected.

I’m off for four weeks from my school district.

When will life approach something resembling normal? Who knows.

Until then, I will keep busy trying to keep the house picked up for any potential buyers, hunker down and not go out unless necessary, and write. Write a lot. Also, maybe doing some of the busy work on some of the projects I have outstanding (read here if you’re bored).

Stay safe, everyone, and bless you all. Good luck writing to all the writers out there.

And for those of you curious, here’s the stats for last week:

+1,972 words written.

Days writing: 7 of 7.

Days revising/planning: 0 of 7 for  0 total minutes.

Daily Writing Goals Met (500+ words or 30 minutes of planning/revisions): 0 of 7 days.


Writing Journal 3.8.2020: Productivity took a nose dive this week

Not much to talk about, so I won’t talk about much.

I was on the road more than usual this week, part of the consequences of preparing for my move later this summer. No real news there, so I’ll leave it at that.

Basically I’m fiddling with my hobby project, Project D (see here for details), and not much else. There’s not too much mental energy for much else given all of the other work I have to do for my day job and keeping things nice and neat around the house for various reasons. I will definitely take advantage of the summer for that, although I have a good feeling my wife will be (rightfully) recruiting me to help take care of things at the new home.

As a result, my productivity nose-dived last week. It’s happened before and despite all of my efforts to keep it otherwise, I am sure it will happen off and on again. I’m just glad that they are the exception and not the general rule, when I went without writing for years at times due to simple procrastination and lack of momentum.

Well, here are the stats for the week. I think it will be easy to better them this coming week, and I hope all of you writers out there are being more productive than I was last week.

+1,578 words written.

Days writing: 3 of 7.

Days revising/planning: 2 of 7 for  60 total minutes.

Daily Writing Goals Met (500+ words or 30 minutes of planning/revisions): 4 of 7 days.

Writing Journal 3.2.2020: Starting March by getting caught up from the past two weeks

Yeah, I’ve been a bad blogger.


I’ve been getting a lot of stuff caught up IRL. Outside obligations mean that I will basically not be at work for a good portion of this week for various reasons (closing on a new house, new job opportunities, etc.). I’ve had my old house on the market and a ton of people have already seen it, but no takers yet. It’s only been on the market a week.


And I have been writing, this is the truth. It’s been more writing than acting like a writer, but there you go. Trying to reach out to the outside world can seem more like a hassle than it is worth, but I do appreciate anyone reading and checking in. Other than the writing, there hasn’t been much news…


…wait, there is one more thing. Writers on the Avenue, the Muscatine, Iowa writer’s group I have belonged to for years, is releasing a 30th anniversary anthology of past and present writers from the group, and I made a couple of contributions to it. Once I find out when it’s getting released and how to get it, I’ll pass it along to you.


So, I’ll be keeping busy and doing a bit of traveling, so I’m not likely to get in any extra blogs this week. However, I have been keeping up with the journal, so I’m leaving the stats for the last two weeks of February here for your perusal. Enjoy, and best of luck to your writing, whatever it might be.


Week of Feb. 17:

+5,724 words written.

Days writing: 6 of 7.

Days revising/planning: 1 of 7 for 90 total minutes.

Daily Writing Goals Met (500+ words or 30 minutes of planning/revisions): 6 of 7 days.


Week of Feb. 24:

+4,684 words written.

Days writing: 4 of 7.

Days revising/planning: 2 of 7 for 90 total minutes.

Daily Writing Goals Met (500+ words or 30 minutes of planning/revisions): 6 of 7 days.

Writing Journal 2.16.2020: Status quo

Not much to write about this week, so I’ll keep it quick.

Honestly, the most exciting stuff I did this week was start getting rid of a massive amount of stuff at my house in preparation for our impending move. Halfway through life, I already see having a lot of stuff as just too much trouble to be honest.

(My wife joked if I was ready to get rid of some of my books. To be honest, however, I have been pretty brutal in recent years with cutting down my book collection to a manageable size.)

Writing has been pretty status quo. I did a lot of revisions to my current project and will continue with that (read here if you want the full story of what I’m working on.)


Aaand… really, that’s all I have this week. I need to give myself permission to be boring sometimes with this blog.

Here’s the stats for this week. Good luck with everyone’s writing.

+2,578 words written.

Days writing: 5 of 7.

Days revising/planning: 3 of 7 for 330 total minutes.

Daily Writing Goals Met (500+ words or 30 minutes of planning/revisions): 5 of 7 days.

Writing Journal 2.9.2020: Spinning wheels but keeping busy

Well, I’ve had sort of a similar writing week as I did last week. Not horrific by any means but not something to cheer about, either. So, I’ll keep things quick.

I got a watch that belonged to my grandfather, so I decided to make that the featured photo for this blog. Just because, not any other grand reason.

Project D (Game of Thrones fanfic) is going slower than anticipated. (Check this out for a full explanation of the projects.) Probably has something to do with the fact that I’m well over 100,000 words on the project and I’m only halfway through it. Hoping that I will have more time over the summer to get the rest of it written, although I’m continuing to write on it throughout this week and currently.

Project F (my OC fantasy project) is still in the planning stages. I’ve gotten tied up in the naming strategy for the societies in the story. I’ve been on several sites and several name generators to get some ideas, and I’ve already been building up a name bank of some possibilities. It’s been taking a while, however.

This is the obligatory “I think it would be a great blog idea to write about this” but then I wind up it doing it until 2-3 weeks later.

I’m getting to be such a lazy presence online. I know I should be promoting myself, this page, the Facebook and Twitter handles, but I’m getting mentally worn out just trying to find cool writing stories or memes to share. I’m also a little pissed at Facebook deciding to just accept any political advertising even if it wasn’t truthful, despite everything that has been happening during the elections from 2016 on. Stephen (The) King just quit Facebook over it and I’m beginning to wonder if I shouldn’t do the same. I am definitely looking to reduce my time on Facebook any way I can, deleting the app from my phone for about the fourth time in six months.

Here’s the stats. Have a good writing week.

+2,687 words written.

Days writing: 4 of 7.

Days revising/planning: 4 of 7 for 210 total minutes.

Daily Writing Goals Met (500+ words or 30 minutes of planning/revisions): 7 of 7 days.

Writing Journal, 2.2.2020: Wrapping up January

So, this week was a bit more planning than writing than it has been before.


Recently, Project D and Project F have been occupying my frontal lobes. The details are here, but basically Project D is a fanfiction fantasy project I’m trying to move toward completion and Project F is a long-term original content fantasy project. A longtime fan of fantasy, the genre has now grabbed my attention with a vengeance.


Essentially, with more work as I wrap up my time at my current district and plans I have to help my wife with regarding both selling my house, buying a new house, moving, helping my son get set up with a new job after finishing his training, and getting my daughter eventually settled in at university, there is a lot going on. I’m happy the month of January is wrapped up – my wife and I are that much closer to having the crazy time finished up.


With all of that, my time writing has been somewhat limited. I always hate reading fanfiction that authors have abandoned due to losing interest in the story, life problems, etc. (On the Internet, you likely have to consider the possibility that some of those authors just pass on mid-story or retire from writing without public comment.) I want to make sure what I’m writing gets done. I have a good outline of the project, I have to just sit down and write everything out. From my estimates, I’m about halfway through the project, and I hope I might be able to finish it up by the end of this summer. Whether that happens is another issue, but I am hopeful and I’m really enjoying the story (it’s here if you want to read it).


Much of my planning/research has been centered on how I want to name both characters and places in my Project F. I’ve started planning what the world the new story takes place in with the help of Wonderdraft, but thinking of what the names of those places should be and what the names of the people that live in those places are another struggle altogether. Everyone talks about how brilliant Tolkien was in naming conventions and so forth, but the guy was a linguistics professor at Cambridge University, so he had a few advantages that I don’t have. I want them to be good without sounding too derivative and done in a way that’s not going to take forever to research, much less write.


I do have some technological resources JRRT didn’t happen to have, however. I think this whole process might be worth it’s own blog post, but don’t ask me to advise you on how to handle it. I’m just muddling along through the creative process just like everyone else is, trying to make something interesting.


Anyway, here’s the stats for last week:

+2,203 words written.

Days writing:  3 of 7.

Days revising/planning: 3 of 7 for 240 total minutes.

Daily Writing Goals Met (500+ words or 30 minutes of planning/revisions): 6 of 7 days.

So, nothing horrific.


Have a good week reading and writing, everyone.

Writing Journal 1.26.2020: Catching up after two weeks

Well, I wound up taking a break from posting for a bit.

I’ve gotten busy with things having to do with work and with the move. Writing at time seems to be a low priority with me, even though it’s one of the few things that is helping me relax. Many things are going on with trying to find a new house in the new town and selling the old house in the old one. Plus, I have my son finishing up his technical school and looking for work in three months and my daughter graduating high school and headed off to university, where I have the feeling she’ll spend plenty of time at rather than home with us.

With all of this going on, getting writing stuff accomplished and reaching goals seems a low priority with me. Then again, I can make all of the goals I want but still decide not to reach them. I think that I’m trying to keep things realistic this year. Whether I have a better year writing than what I did in 2019 is an open question, but I’m not going to beat myself up if I’m not as prolific.

It’s bleeding over into some other areas now. If anyone has been following my Facebook  and Twitter pages for a while, I haven’t been posting as much writing articles or items other than the blog posts and a few odds and ends. It gets really exhausting trying to post new stuff or articles all the time, and to be honest I’m not really a fan of Facebook for all of the falsehoods and misleading advertising it has all the time. I rarely browse the thing anymore and I’ve deleted the main app for it from my phone (maybe the fourth time in the past several months). If it wasn’t for my page on Facebook there’s a good chance I’d delete my account altogether.

I think everything that has been happening with me has slowed the momentum I had going on as a writer. However, with the move, I’m essentially leaving my writing community behind and I’ll have to start over with that, there’s nothing else for it. It doesn’t make sense for me to try and be this ambitious about a passion project or projects if I have so many real life things to deal with, especially in the next four to six months.

There’s so many changes coming. Hopefully the rest of the first half of the year flies by and I feel more settled by the end of it.

Here’s the stats, anyway. First week went well, but I have a feeling that the most recent week will be more typical of my production for the foreseeable future. Anyway, hope your writing goes well and have a great week.

Week of 1.12.2020:

+8,425 words written.

Days writing: 4 of 7.

Days revising/planning: 4 of 7 for 210 total minutes.

Daily Writing Goals Met (500+ words or 30 minutes of planning/revisions): 7 of 7 days.

Week of 1.19.2020:

+2,160 words written.

Days writing: 4 of 7.

Days revising/planning: 2 of 7 for  90 total minutes.

Daily Writing Goals Met (500+ words or 30 minutes of planning/revisions): 5 of 7 days.