and it’s back to writing…

A few months ago, I stopped working on my writing.

The novel revisions came to a halt. I didn’t explore ideas for new writing projects. My blogging became even less frequent than before.

It didn’t feel like a writing block. It simply felt like I was meant to (temporarily) put my energy and focus elsewhere.

Like painting. And my healing journey. (And painting is a big part of my healing journey.)

My creative flow was still going strong, but it was flowing to other things instead of writing.

Maybe partly because my creative flow kept flowing, and maybe partly because I didn’t feel like I was blocked when it came to writing, it didn’t bother me that I put the writing aside for a while.

I knew, intuitively, writing would come back around when it was time.

And it has.

Two weeks ago, writing showed showed up again, gently nudged me, and whispered come on, let’s get going again.

So we’re going again.

No forcing, no pushing, no angst. Just going with the writing flow. Enjoying the process.

It feels right and good, and I’m grateful.

Not writing isn’t always about being stuck or blocked. Sometimes writing takes a back seat for a while so that it can return refreshed and renewed and ready to get going again.

printable (free!) – weekly writing plan…

Late yesterday afternoon, I finished the draft of the novel I’m writing. (Yay!!)

The book isn’t done yet – revisions are the next step – and I’m a firm believer, and know from experience, that rewriting and revising are key. And since I happen to love the process of rewriting and revising,  I’m looking forward to getting down to work on this next phase of the project.

A few weeks ago, I set a deadline for myself to finish this draft by the end of December. I didn’t have a daily goal of word counts or hours. I simply had the date of December 31 in sight. And I met that goal.

For me, it’s often helpful to keep my writing deadlines and goals on the “loose” side of things. (I’ll probably talk more about that in a future post.) Because of this, I didn’t use any sort of detailed tracking sheet.

But – for some writers (and sometimes for me, depending on the project) a written-down, scheduled, tracked way to keep up with the writing process and progress is definitely the way to go when it comes to working on, and finishing, a novel, nonfiction book, article, short story, or blog post.

That’s why I put together this free printable, a Weekly Writing Plan to keep track of writing goals and to-do’s for the week, as well as your daily progress.

The file is in .pdf format. All you need to do is download it for the paper size you want to use (there’s no charge, no strings attached, nothing to sign up for, no need to give your email address) – and then print it as many times as you need, to cover as many weeks as you want.

The Weekly Writing Plan pdf in US letter size is here.

The Weekly Writing Plan pdf in A4 size is here.

The Weekly Writing Plan pdf in A5 size is here.

If you’d like to check out my other free printables, you can find them here.

Happy writing!

 

writing, faith, life ~ latest update…

My experiment with updating each area in my blog’s tagline ( writing ~ faith ~ life ) took a twist, because early last month I decided a weekly update wasn’t the way I wanted to go. I thought, instead, maybe a couple of times a month – but then I ended up not even doing a second one last month.

So…  the experiment continues, but with no certain schedule or frequency. At least not right now. As happens with experiments, though, it’s all subject to change.

And now on to the latest updates with writing, and faith, and life.

W R I T I N G

I’m close to being finished with the current draft of the novel, and that feels good.

Really good.

Finishing this draft won’t mean being finished with the novel, but this a big step. My self-imposed deadline is the end of the month. Really, though, I’m hoping it will take less time.

The anthology I was putting together is on hold for now. I’m waiting for clear guidance about going forward with it. Or not.

And the plan I discussed in my last update – based on my realization that I need to work on fiction in the mornings – is going well.

The writing is getting done.

Not always as fast as what I consider ideal..

But it’s getting done.

F A I T H

Last month, I wrote out the book of Philippians, one of my all-time favorite books of the Bible. Its reminders to focus on joy and thanksgiving – always helpful for me to remember – held some special importance the past weeks.

With November and writing Philippians both over, I wanted to continue writing out entire books of Scripture because the practice has been such a blessing to me. John is the book I’ve been guided to next and I started writing it at the beginning of the month.

This isn’t a December challenge for myself, though. I don’t want to rush through the Gospel of John (which is another very meaningful book for me personally) and so I probably won’t be finished by the end of the month.

And that’s okay.

I’ve also started writing out the book of Psalms, using a different journal than I’ve been using to write the other books, and writing one Psalm every few days. This is an ongoing project and I have no idea when I’ll be finished.

And that’s okay too.

The important thing about all of this Scripture writing isn’t how quickly I can get it done and over with. It’s about spending time with the Lord and in the Word.

L I F E

One thing I’m not fond of this time of year is the early darkness. And all the cloudy (or flat-out rainy) days we’ve been having.

My body, my mind, my emotions… all of ME seems to do best when there’s sunshine.

I also do best when it’s not too cold and not too hot.

Since I can’t control the weather, I try to find ways to make difficult weather easier for me to deal with. When we had a cold snap that made before-mid-November feel like the middle of winter, and I found myself struggling with the cold temperatures and the dreary skies, and I was wondering how in the world I was going to cope with the weather over the coming months if it was already having such a negative impact… I knew I needed to get very intentional about putting some strategies into place.

I set about rearranging a few things in the eating space of our kitchen (where I keep my table-top easel to paint on canvas) to uptick the cozy comfort of the area even more than it was.

I added more strands of fairy lights around the house. We have them all over the place, and use them all year long, but I realized more strands would be even better – and they’re being turned on even more than usual.

I made the decision to spend more time in certain rooms on cloudy days, to take advantage of the natural light those rooms get.

I created even more little spaces of cozy-comfort with throws and pillows and light… small nooks in corners or near chairs that feel inviting and warm.

It truly has been a very intentional process. And as I get more ideas of things that might help, I’ll put those into place too.

With writing, with my faith, with my life in general… I’m being reminded, again and even more, of how I need to be conscious and deliberate and intentional when it comes to doing things that can make a positive difference.

And it matters because it really does make a difference, even if it’s sometimes a small difference.

But you know what? Sometimes even a small difference is enough to make the difference.