On Distractions and Roadblocks

So, after a week's hiatus, I really have nothing new to report on the writing front (and I'm sorry for the missed post, if anyone out there noticed!) I can't say I didn't do anything, I just didn't accomplish much. This part of the process has been a long time coming. I could see it on the horizon, and I just kept saying "keep going, you'll deal with it when it gets here." And then it got here, and I just stalled out.

To further snarl things up, a big change came up at work that totally diverted all my resources and attention. I'm also picking up a few extra shifts for a friend/coworker who has some important stuff going on in her life. And since I really need those large blocks of time and attention to get the majority of my writing done, I just had to set it on the shelf for a while.

To be fair, I figured a lot of things out. I had to let the problem sit in my brain for a while before I could come up with an answer. I needed to try a couple things that didn't work, and look very hard at what came before and what would come after. I had to send a chapter that I really hated and didn't think worked to my writing group.

Now that I've found the answer, it all seems so small. I wonder how something so insignificant can feel so huge; it's like a grain of sand plugging up the Hoover Dam. I had to add a transition scene between two really important scenes, and I just couldn't figure out what needed to go in there. And it took two weeks to figure it out.

The consequences of this aren't huge, just two more weeks, one more critique meeting than I planned on. But I'm getting antsy to have the story fully written. Since I didn't have that transition scene by the time I needed it, I couldn't turn it in to the writing group for this past Saturday (granted, I pushed it so late that I only made it on the agenda at all by the grace and kindness of my group). Ah well, they say patience is a virtue, and they also say I don't have it.

Anyway, the good thing that came out of this delay is that I'm itching to get on with it. And I'd like to pick up the pace a bit. I've been plodding along, very steadily it's true, and now's the time to sprint for the finish line. So I plan to post the chapters to my critique group's google group as soon as they are ready, even if they won't be critiqued for several weeks. Maybe I can have it done by the end of June, and I can "let it sit" and get critiques on it at the same time, so I'm ready to go by August.

Also, although I can't share pics from work by formal decree, I can share some of my favorite pics of wildlife that I have archived. They aren't doing anything but sitting on my computer, and I have absolutely no talent for or drive to be an actual photographer, so I might as well share! So each blog post will have some of my pics, and maybe a bit of explanation if it is needed.

Here are some butterfly pics I took in the Smoky Mountains in Tennessee. I'm not sure what type they are, but my guess is the Eastern Black Swallowtail. There was an entire flock of them on the ground, pretty docile. Butterflies drink nectar, which is low in several nutrients, including nitrogen. To supplement their intake, they will land on mud puddles (or anything moist and nutrient rich, like cow-pies) and drink up the water and the nutrients that come with it. This is called "puddling," and the males do it most frequently, since they need a lot more of the scarce nutrients, for mating and sometimes for color production, than the females do.