Wednesday, September 14, 2011

How I Fight Off The Winter Blues

Today it's nippy outside. The high temperature reached around 60 degrees and a nagging drizzle fell all afternoon. Overnight, we'll experience 44 degrees. The sun is setting earlier each day. The Autumnal Equinox is only nine days away. I can already feel my energy changing. I am less energetic. I am craving heavy comfort foods like soup and mashed potatoes.

Winter in Chicago is in a word, brutal. Freezing temps, snowy mess, and frigid winds off Lake Michigan make outdoor life a kind of hell. Most people do lots of complaining about the winter weather, me included. Don't judge--we have to complain or we might go stir crazy. 

In my family we gauge the seasons by jigsaw puzzles. I could come home from school on any given winter day and find our dining room table covered in a work in progress. Around the unfinished puzzle border there would be stacks of shallow boxes full of tiny pieces grouped by color and visual texture. It's just something we do to pass the time when it's too cold to enjoy the outdoors.

As I grew up I discovered my own way of fighting off cabin fever. I paint. I'm self-taught but I do love it. Colorful smears of acrylic paint cover almost all of my winter pajamas and sweatshirts. I recently rearranged my office/creative space to maximize room for the upcoming painting season.  Below is a creation of mine from last winter that now hangs in my living room. I call it "Reach Beyond Grasp." Reach Beyond Grasp

Seeing as I'm in the process of finishing a NaNo novel, I don't know how much painting I will be doing this year. It will take work to find the proper balance between writing and painting. November is entirely scheduled to my novel for NaNoWriMo. After that, I'll allow myself plenty of time to indulge in my favorite cure for the winter blues--a brush, a palate and a canvas.

Monday, September 5, 2011

National Novel Writing Month

I've done it! I am an official participant in NaNoWriMo 2011!  While I am both excited and terrified about the prospect of compiling a 50,000 word novel during the month of November, I know it's the right thing to do. This endeavor will force me to complete my work in progress and rid me of my bad habit of editing as I go. My strategy is to pace myself at 1700 words per day to make things more manageable.

If you're already a member, please feel free to add me as a writing buddy. You can find my profile here.

I will definitely keep you updated on my process during November. Wish me luck and cheers to shitty first drafts. C. L. Kay write writing writer fiction sciencefiction fantasy magicalrealism book ebook novel shortstory publish publishing selfpublish amazon kindle facebook twitter wattpad blogger pinterest instagram