Tuesday, August 3, 2010

Until I Try

An osprey takes wing near Gardiner, Montana.

I've been away from the blog for a few days. Okay, nearly a week. But I have two really good excuses, one of which is I was away for the weekend.
It was the Heritage Day long weekend here so my husband and went to Yellowstone. It was a wonderful trip and I am so glad I did it. I hope to get back to spend more time there.
The other excuse was I am conducting an experiment on myself. I've committed to writing 1,000 words a day.
I started this last week and did it three days in a row. The fourth day was the first day of the mini-vacation and we left at 5:30 a.m. Yes, I could have written the quota, but I needed my sleep.
I'm pleased to report that the writing sessions for those three days went well. I sat down and pounded out the quota and then some in one sitting. Said sitting was less than an hour.
Even though I haven't reviewed what I wrote, I am confident that up to 100 words each day will prove to be keepers.
I've done this for other manuscripts though never formalized it. This time I've made the commitment and I've made an hypnosis suggestion to make it so.
I've been a Transpersonal Hypnotherapist for 14 years. I've experimented on myself many times and was pleased with the results including the time I used self-hypnosis to cut down on the amount of potato chips I eat.
Last week I made a word quota suggestion on tape plus threw in the phrase "thousand words a day" at random points as I was relaxing myself.
Has it worked?
Well, I'll tell you this, I'm much too tired today to do anything with my manuscript yet I feel compelled to fire up a file and write. It's similar to the craving a smoker gets when she needs a smoke ( I'm an ex-smoker. I know of what I speak.) or a desperate need for good, dark chocolate.
It's too early to call it a success, but it looks good so far.
And, like the osprey in the photo leaving its nest, I won't know until I try.

17 comments:

Hilary said...

Did you whittle yourself down to 100 words or is that a weary-eyed typo? ;)

You mentioned dark chocolate and so I get it. Sound like a great plan.. best of luck for its success. Love the photo.

Leah J. Utas said...

Hi Hilary. I mean of those 1,000 words some of them are good enough to stay in the final draft, but I realize it'll take editing and I expect it'll be brutal. Thanks for asking. Glad you like the pic. I admit I am pleased with it.

messymimi said...

That is the way to do it. Commit to a certain number of words a day, or an amount of time, whichever works for you, and stick with it.

I'm glad you had a good weekend away, and congratulations on putting the "ex" in front of smoker. That's a hard sucker to beat.

the Bag Lady said...

Great photo, cousin!
And congratulations on pounding out 1,000 words per day! I'm sure more than 100 of those will be keepers!

Leah J. Utas said...

Thanks so much, Messymimi. I'm eager to see where it gets me.

Bag Lady, thanks for your confidence in my abilities.

Tabor said...

What a good idea. Just like the promise of exercising. I am assuming you have an idea for the 1,000 words each day and this is not stream of consciousness typing.

Virginia Lee said...

I need one of those tapes, Leah. Last week I did pretty well with the writing, managing @ 500 new words a day. I wanted to write yesterday, and I did in a bitchmoangripe kind of way at a writing site I go to in re: the heat and such, but Mrs. Mangum's latest adventure is still languishing, unfinished.

And yes, TBL is correct. The photo is genius. xoxo

Reb said...

Good for you! I too am sure that more than 100 of those 1000 will be keepers.

The photo is stunning. Glad you had fun on your weekend.

Leah J. Utas said...

Tabor, usually when I get my fingers on the keyboard something comes to me.

VL, it's the daily writing, not just the word count, that really matters. Good for you. I'm sure Mrs. Mangum will get her adventure.

Reb, perhaps a few more. Thanks. The weekend was great, if tiring.

David Cranmer said...

On my writing days I shoot for 1,000. I have read that's what Jack London did and what's good for Jack...

Leah J. Utas said...

I didn't know that David. Thanks.

Writing Without Periods! said...

When I was writing full time, I wrote at my high energy time which is in the morning. I wrote before I did anything else. If I didn't, it never got done. Coffee, computer on, start. No phone, no anything until I wrote for three hours. Worked for me. Your post is very intersting.
Mary

carla said...

SO glad all is ok and you are living living not blogging about life.

Leah J. Utas said...

Mary, it's good to find what works for you and go with it. I used to have a high energy time in the morning, too. It changed to late afternoon/early evening several years ago. Now, it feels like it's changing again and I'm writing in the afternoons.

Carla, thanks. I'm so sorry I worried you. I'll see about being more careful how I come across in the future.

CherylK said...

You are driven, it seems...good for you! I admire you for your determination. In fact, you've inspired me to get serious about a couple of things I've been putting off. So thank you!

Leah J. Utas said...

Thank you, CherylK. I'm not sure I've inspired anyone before. Good to hear. Best of everything with your projects.

CherylK said...

I'm pretty sure you've inspired more than just me, Leah...