The blog of D Kai Wilson-Viola

Author, advocate, designer, mental health advocate and parent. 

Momentum

Momentum

We move through our lives at a constant pace.  We can accelerate or decelerate ourselves with a limited amount of success, but the speed we do things at, at our base rate at least, is probably something we’ll never change.  Some of us rush headlong into everything and batter through life as fast as we can, hungry for as many new experiences as we can pick up, and tired at the end of each day because we’ve packed in so much.

Others go as slow as possible, savoring every step, and realising, deep down, that they can’t do everything they might want to.

My problem is I want to savor everything, but I want it all.  I have too many hobbies, and too little time on my books for new stuff.  I book far too much into my life, mostly because I can.  My laptop became both my freedom and my curse, because now, there’s a whole world of reading and writing out there, and I get nothing done.
Facebook is a horrible blessing.  I can meet and hang out with so many wonderful people, and keep an eye on my friends, and there are some really cool games on there, but, lets face it, I’ve got a nasty habit of refreshing my page again and again, and then wondering, at 2pm, where my day went.

Worst of all, I’m a person that moves through life with a momentum that pulls others along behind me.  And lately, I kinda feel like I’m out in the middle of a great big ocean, with no chance of finding the new land I was aiming for.  But it feels like I’m stranding other people now and I don’t like that feeling.

Momentum is working out where you’re going and I think that’s the biggest thing for me right now.  I need to work out which map I’m working from – someone else’s or my own.  If I’m working from someone else’s, where can I adapt it so it’s all mine – or if I’m going to dive on in headlong and do it all myself, I need to work out where I want to go – there are *so many* choices right now.

What I do know is tomorrow begins my ninth Nanowrimo.  I’m really looking forward to it.  It gives me another month to work out and plan the roller coaster that is about to be my life.  One way or another, things will start resolving and working out the way I want to.

Plans are coming soon, though.  I’m happy to report there *is* a plan, but it’s difficult to see whether it’s the right choice right now.  So I’m going to have a bit of fun with my writing for a bit, and see where that takes me.  It’s too easy for me to lose sight of what I wanted to do when I started out online – which was writing.  I’ve gone all over the web since, looking for something that’s ‘all me’ but what I am, underneath it all, is a writer.

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Boerdom

Boerdom

Monument al llibre (“Monument to the book”), s...

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Boredom is this wonderful thing for writers – it’s where I get most of my inspiration from.

it’s like, recently, we were sitting in class waiting for our tutor and someone started talking about books they were never going to read – and we all decided, that if we couldn’t read a book, we had to do *something* with it.  By the time the tutor had come online, four of us were making book sculptures!

It’s also how I get into the most trouble.  honestly, if I’m bored I’m more likely to volunteer for something.
So, I’ve set myself limits – no more ordering domains off of Godaddy – not after I spent all those months pruning them, and no more volunteering for long term commitments, unless they’re good for me.  I’ll need to see how long I last 🙂

Kai’s book, Glass Block, is due out in August

This post is part of a series for

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So, the new world order

So, the new world order

Kindle 2.0

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I discovered a couple of things this weekend – the first being I don’t like being out of control – meds haven’t changed how pressured I feel when things start dropping out-of-order.
The second thing I discovered is I’m really freaking out about my dissertation – and with all my focus on trying to keep work flowing and keep up with all of my commitments, I’ve been pushing that to the back of my mind and going ‘la la la’. Not good given it’s due in just under 60 days and I’m only confident in about a fifth of it (of 10k). I have a meeting about that today…
The third thing I discovered – and keep discovering is that if I don’t commit to writing at least a little fiction daily, I become very negative. It’s not because my self-worth is tied to my writing – in fact it’s worse than that – it’s because without fiction, I really feel like I’m a failure.
I guess that needs to be examined some more because I can’t handle not writing fiction – but at the same time, I’m afraid to ‘put it out there’ so it sits, worthless on my hard drive. Ultimately too, I don’t need people to tell me I’m being silly, or demand it, or anything else – it’s not how my psyche works. I need to put myself out there, but before I do so, I have to start writing again.
What this means in practicality is that i am going to start small. A couple of times a week I’m going to take time out for my projects. Instead of investing (wasting!) time surfing the net, or vegging on Facebook (because I do that more often than I’m productive and helpful on there) I’m going to write my ‘own’ stuff. I’m not sure how I’m going to balance work and this yet, but it starts with my assignments and my dissertation. As they are fiction, that suits me quite nicely.

And yes, I know, I said this a couple of months ago, when I said ‘making it easier on myself’, but you know what?  Sometimes it takes me a while between making a decision and actually actioning it.  It’s a personality flaw I guess 😉
After May, I’m going to finish producing a couple of short non fiction books for the Kindle platform and start redressing this balance that’s out of whack. Ultimately I’m not earning ‘enough’ as a copywriter now and that needs to be addressed – not by taking on ever more work – but by balancing copywriting part time with being an author and publisher part-time. I have lots of marketable expertise – I really should share it.

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30 posts later – where I am, where I’m going etc

30 posts later – where I am, where I’m going etc

I noticed this morning that I hit the magical 30 post mark, from the 30 posts in 30 days (in my case, really it was 30 posts in 45 days!) and wanted to do a quick round-up, along with some observations.

First up – I suck at timetables.
Actually, more accurately, I suck at working within timetables, when there is lots going on around me.  In the last month I went back to Uni for a new term (my last one), I moved laptops to a much sleeker, faster, sweeter piece of kit (which leads me to a point I’m going to make later), and I finally discovered that my love for writing definitively needs fiction to keep the flames burning.  And that simply reading it for now isn’t enough.
I also discovered that 30 billable hours equates to much *much* more than that, and I procrastinate too much, which lead me to another project idea for this month/next month.   I discovered that I’m not in the best shape mentally, or physically, and that I really need to find and adhere to boundaries.  That means less answering email on my phone when I should be chilling out, and more spending my time working on the things – all of them – that makes me happy. Journaling, despite being suggested, isn’t something I can get into any more – I had a horrible time of it when my then psych council got his hands on one of my stories and tried to commit me because it was about suicide, and jumping out the windows of my flat.  I know mental health care has moved on in leaps and bounds since then, but there have been other incidents where people have used my journal against me.  Next best idea is to go back to fiction :).

Specifics though

  • Of the 30 posts I had planned, I’ve still got 14 drafts left.  I’ve also added to that and have ideas for about another 60 blog posts – or partial posts.  If I got them scheduled and farmed to the right blogs (because some of them might not belong *here* when I’m done) then I’ve got content for two blogs for a month, or several blogs for several months depending on posting schedules.
  • I’m so not over my blogging apathy.  I still find it difficult to interact on Livejournal, where I started to blog – I don’t know if it’s transient but it’s lasted about eight months so far and hasn’t abated any.  I work a full-time job, study practically full time for Uni, write when I can, plus I’m the primary parent for a nine-year old with emotional difficulties (she’s getting MUCH better), and an eleven year old that is an amazing wee guy.  And then I fit my relationships with friends, family and my fiancée into that massive mix.  It’s not an easy balancing act, and gets harder in November, when I run the Nanowrimo, and in April for ScriptFrenzy.  I think it’s a symptom of my life being too busy, but it could just be that I’ve outgrown how I used to blog (24 blogs, updated on a three-day schedule).  It could just be that I’m burned out still – and that I need more time to myself.  It could be that it’s just one of those things.  The 30 day challenge brought me back to a lot of that, but  there’s still a lot to be said for needing more time to fall in love with blogging all over again.
  • I really don’t write enough fiction.  I’m not editing at all – I’ve got this one task in my task manager that keeps getting bumped to next week to actually sit down and write Glass Block – which lead me in a very circumlocutory way to a project I want to try.  More about that below though.
  • Emotionally, I’m not over any of the miscarriages I’ve had in my adult life, but of all of them, this last one was the hardest.  I think it’s a mix of us both being on board with the idea fully, and the traumatic way we found out I wasn’t pregnant, plus the hospital stuff afterwards, but now I’m not doing well with any of that stuff.   The last one resulted in the problems we had when I moved and the referral through the Crisis team in Gloucester (who, really I can’t praise enough) to the Recovery team and my wonderful worker, whom I really *really* miss.  This one seems to be worse in some ways, because I’m still feeling it all and I’m ON medication.  Time will tell I suppose.  December doesn’t seem that long ago, but that morning in the hospital feels even closer to me still.*

Moving on

I guess the positive in that phrase is that I actually know where I’m going and what my plan is.  Well, kinda anyway.
There’s two immediate projects I want to get out of the way and through before I decide what I’m going to do with myself full-time from now on.  Lots of the projects I’ve got in mind are just going to have to wait till after I’ve graduated – realistically, I don’t have time to blog in all the places I want to, but I will soon.

But the two big projects.
I want to show the impact social media has on someone’s day – so I’m going to do a Friday *with* full social media interaction, and a Friday without.  The Friday *With*, I’m going to use Facebook and Twitter through my laptop – without I’m going to check in on my phone.   To get to that point though, I need to rebuild my tweetdeck and reader set-up, plus update what I’m looking at because I’m pretty scattered all over the place right now.

I’m going to journal what I’m doing, and track the time using an app that I’ve long since gotten used to called ‘Rescue time’.  I’ll log my full day on (and off) the computer, and post the results and some conclusions I’ve drawn at the end of it.  It’s a teeny tiny project, but it’s one of those wonderful things that others can attempt to duplicate and they too can talk about what they found, so it’s going to be interesting.  I’m going to stick that happy little project up on Work at home Writers, because it’s primarily about productivity.

The second is a little more hazy now.  I’ve got to get the books I’ve written into Scrivener, and then move on from there, but I’m deliberately declaring Sundays ‘fiction day’.  I’ll most likely have to skip a couple of them to get my dissertation finished, or when there’s a massively pressing deadline, but if I’m so reluctant to write non fiction, it’s maybe for a different reason and I want to test that 🙂  For that second, specifically, I need lots of encouragement.  I am deliberately removing billable hours from my schedule, and guilt aside, I’m not sure that I’m even particularly confident in my fiction abilities any more.  So if you could hop onto one of the social media areas where I talk writing, cheer me on at Writers-bookshelf or otherwise play ‘cheering squad for me’ I’d love it, I really would.

* I don’t talk about what went on – and would appreciate that people don’t pursue this one reference to it with me.  I’m not interested in baring my soul about it and while I appreciate it’s an area that women really don’t talk about enough, I’d rather err on the side of not talking about it.  That said, I’d rather people knew why I was prickly, than simply smack them upside the head.

Shameless self promotion – books, sites and how to encourage me ;)

Shameless self promotion – books, sites and how to encourage me ;)

One of the off list conversations I had with the people who were asking me about my stuff, and encouraging me not to be shy is to ask to have you guys urge me.
So I bowed to peer pressure, in a positive way. The following ways are the absolute best ways to get me to – find out about the books I’ve mentioned in the past, urge me to write them, and get access to them, and the writing process before/after/getting your mitts on them. Having a strong fan base will also help me convince publishers that I’m a great bet after the first ‘oh, this is good’.

I’m considering whether I should work to a self publishing schedule for some of my books – I’m not sure whether I should keep slogging on with Elliot Peters and his stuff or just get it out there so that those that want it can get their hands on it, while those that want to wait till it’s backed by a publisher can still support me by passing the book onto others.

Facebook

I’ve got a page for my main book stuff – and as the books come out, I’ll create a page for the big ones – and a short story overall page for the shorter ebooks.  You can sign up at D Kai Wilson-Viola’s Facebook Page.  As a quick side note, I won’t add people to my main Facebook page if you’re only interested in my books, or I don’t know who you are.  This is not to say I won’t welcome you on my fan page, but I have lines that I tend to defend.  If you know me from somewhere and think that I should add you, it goes faster either way if you tell me where we know one another from – but I’m always happy to gain new ‘fans’.

Twitter

I have two main twitter feeds – Kaiberie (my personal one) and BooksbyKai – where I’ll talk writing/publishing/share notices and reviews.  I add people back as long as they aren’t constantly offering information on making money 😀

Blogs and websites

I’m currently in the process of redesigning my website, so for now, I can’t point you at anything – but what I can do now is point you at my writer’s blog – at writers-bookshelf.

Anything else?

I’d love to hear if there’s anything that you would like to hear or see?

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