Trustful Blossoming: #ROW80 Update 1/23/13

Curious? Click here!

I’m taking this trust thing to a whole new level this year! And how about you?

Excerpt from Monday’s freewriting at 750 Words

~~I’m just going to more or less use this space for the top of my head thoughts tonight, just pour forth whatever randomness crops up, in keeping with a day that has been somewhat on the random side.

The children are in the midst of a shifting sleep pattern. They stayed up until late afternoon to earlyevening, today, then, Lise slept until 1:15am, and Miah 2am.

I had a workout, although my right knee has been bothering me for the last two days. I came home , with some groceries, to find the children both sleeping, and the family rooms somewhat torn apart, because Jim is in the process of fixing the coat and catchall cabinet, and mostly, today, that seems to have entailed taking many things off it, piling them around the room, and…

Well, the and, whatever it will be, hasn’t happened yet, so…

We watched the last bit of The Rifleman, and M*A*S*H, and then I took a hot shower, we had coffee, Jim massaged me with lotion…nice, because many of my muscles are feeling well used and pleasantly fatigued and sore.

Jim made us comfort food-Velveeta Shells and Cheese, with Nathan’s hot dogs cut up in it.

And then, after Castle, we took a rare nap…

I’m trying to get more into naps, these days, at least when I’m feeling tired. For a long time, I felt guilty about any need to sleep during the daytime hours (or anytime before I was going to bed for the night, the day,or whatever).

But that is one of those leftover part of the Puritan work ethic, and the legacy of my parents’ voices in my head, berating any way of life that doesn’t reasonably mimic theirs….

I’ve made the commitment to free myself of those leftover inherited ideas and requirements, anywhere that they do not support the life I want to live.

At the same time, I am learning to listen to my own body and my own needs.

And the children are growing up, not needing to have my full attention to keep them safe and fed, in the way that they did, a couple of years ago.

As, at the dawn of 2012, I claimed my writing life without guilt, I am now claiming my basic need to rest when I am weary.

It’s something of a run-up to eventually having an empty nest, or at least having children who are grown up enough to allow me, more or less, to live life on my own terms.~~

Jeremiah reflects while watching life-size board games on Ellen.

And that was just the beginning of my trusting leaps of faith…

  • I joined Kristen Lamb’s WANA 1013’s. I am excited to be embarking trustfully on this new journey!

  • I signed up for Day 1 of WANACon (would have done both days, but budget and family need other things…maybe next year).

  • I upgraded my main WordPressblog, shanjeniah, and began customizing it.

These three leaps constitute something new, for me…a significant financial investment in my writing life.

A year ago, when I first began contemplating classes, writing conferences, and blog upgrades, they seemed far away, almost impossible, and hugely too expensive to consider, even if I could find the time…

I see it differently, now. I’m willing to trust that, even if I do not see financial renumeration for these investments, I will still benefit, personally, by embracing my passion, developing myself in that arena.

I am doing these things for myself.

And that is trust, cubed. =D

Trusting Myself: My ROW80 Round One Update, 1/23/13:

Post-first evaluation goals

Goals, sans commentary

  • Goals on target or completed are noted as such.

  • Major goals appear in bolded blue.

  • Minor goals appear in bolded black.

  • Bolded black or blue italics denote time frames for completion.

One boy with many faces….and lots and lots of golden curls!


WIP Novels:

Complete rough draft of Sima Garo Provides. Aim for 2 scenes each week (~3000 words), and notes for each scene.

  • I completed the notes for Chapter Twelve, Scene Two (19minutes).

Read through Chameleon’s Dish and Bounded by a Nutshell, making general notes as I go. Make task lists for next steps for both novels.

  • Chameleon’s Dish

  • I have added notes and placeholder files for the as-yet unwritten scenes that will eventually take this WIP from novella to novel length.

  • Note-taking goal accomplished for this WIP.

  • Next, I will begin the task list for this project. I am targeting February 10 as my tentative completion date.

  • Bounded by a Nutshell –

  • I began the note-taking process for this novel with Chapter One, Scene One, where rereading strongly suggested a change in POV character, and a near-immediate introduction of a secondary plot complication.

  • I attained my goal of beginning before the January 27 update.

  • My new goal is to complete note-taking on Chapters One-Five before the 1/27 update.

Begin timelines for both stories, throughout all WIP and extrapolated novels.

  • Sima Garo Provides

  • Synopsis complete through Chapter One.

  • I will reach Chapter Five of this process by the January 27 update.

  • Bounded by a Nutshell

  • I had intended only to work on only one synopsis at a time, but I realized that it would be simpler and more efficient to add this one, as I move through each scene in the note-taking process.

  • I have completed Chapter One, Scene One.

  • My goal is to complete the synopsis through Chapter Five by the 1/27 update.

Flash Fiction:

Create new flash fiction weekly through prompts, challenges, envisioning WIP scenes, and original ideas.

  • I wrote the rough draft of an as-yet untitled flash fiction piece, experimenting with an alternate scene for Bounded by a Nutshell, Chapter One, Scene One.

  • I reread and moved to a LibreOffice file for revision.

Revise existing pieces in my Writing Bullpen files, with an eye to submitting and/or creating a collection for a potential book. Aim for one biweekly.

  • I chose to work first onThe Last House.

  • I reread, so that I can allow the imagery to flow. I have a basic sense of what I want to accomplish in revision.

  • Next story up will be A Splash of Red, and then Morning Coffee.

  • I will have revised at least one story by the Sunday, January 27 update.

Submit at least one short story to a paying market each month.

  • See above for revision status of this month’s story.

  • I will submit before next Sunday (1/27).


Return to 750 Use this space for free expository writing at least every other day, and strive to complete every day of the round.

Write book reviews forBowlful of BunniesandFinding Esta, once I have finished reading them.

Bowlful of Bunnies – reading completed.

  • I wrote impressions for the review during my Sunday expository writing time.

  • I’ve arranged the color-blocked passages into a rough order.

  • Next, I will revise, and expand the passages into a rough draft.

  • My goal is to have completed rough draft by January 27.

Finding Esta –Reading is complete.

  • I will write my original impressions and notes during Thursday’s expository writing session.

  • Reading goal completed before personal deadline of 1/23.

Complete one essay or other piece of expository writing each week.

  • I will be revising the rough writing I did on my family issue during the last session.

  • I’ve reread the impressions, and have allowed myself processing time.

  • During freewriting, I began to explore the idea of obedience vs, judgment, something I have been pondering for quite a while now.

  • I will be returning to this idea, as well, during the next days.

Lise with The great Dollhouse Caper, which was my book when I was her age.



Create blog rolls for shanjeniah (writers and resources), and Trueborn Jottings (resources and inspiration).

  • Links added to my spiffy new blogroll:

  • ROW80

  • Kristen Lamb’s Blog

  • Elizabeth Anne Mitchell

  • I’ve decided to work first on shanjeniah, and then Trueborn Jottings, simply because shanjeniah is more often visited, is older, and many links from there will also be relevant at Jottings.

Edit sidebars and layout for all blogs (excepting childrens’ reporting blogs).

  • I created a list of next steps for shanjeniah’s sidebar, and will move through this list, adding new items as they occur:

  • Check page list – delete or hide ones that are no longer relevant.

  • Search bar to top of page.

  • Replace participant NaNo 2012 badge with Winner’s Badge.

  • Add August CampNaNo Winner’s Badge and WIP Title

  • Blog calendar under Pages.

  • Complete these first five steps by January 27 update.

  • Update Unfettered badge.

  • Add link to Trueborn Jottings

  • Update Facebook badge.

  • Add Twitter, Pinterest badges.

  • Blog follow under calendar.

  • Archives under blog follow.

  • I will have this sidebar edited by February 15.

Write at least one post weekly for three major blogs (shanjeniah; TruebornJottings, andThe Unfettered Life.

  • My pending posts for this week, and their status:

  • Obedience Vs. Judgment (WIP) The Unfettered Life

  • Using Pinterest for Worldbuilding (idea) – Trueborn Jottings

  • Written Beatings, or Speaking my Truth? (WIP) – shanjeniah.

A room to live in….not spotless, but a comfy retreat she finally can enjoy again! Yay us! =D


Complete all ROW80 sponsor visits twice weekly; comment, and share posts I read.

  • Blogs I’ve visited this session:

  • Goal completed for this session.

Read weekly at a writer-oriented blog that appeals to me; comment; share; learn; absorb, try, grow.

  • Using the Twelve Stages of Physical Intimacy To Build Tension In Your Novel

  • I love, love LOVE this sexy post!

  • I wanted to comment, but it’s an older post, and I can’t…so, I believe this will be the topic of next week’s shanjeniah post.

Submit guest posts, at least once monthly.

  • Goal completed for January.

  • I will begin my February post by the January 30 update.

Social Media:

Visit Pinterest, SheWrites, or StoryDam at least weekly. Get a better sense of how each works, and build my presence there with sharing, commenting, and asking questions.

  • Pinterest – Trolled the main page and repinned some items. Food, decorating, crafts, inspiration.

  • She Writes – Posted to a group; skimmed groups, my page, and a few comments. Still not sure where this site fits into my social media life…or if it does.

  • StoryDam – Checked the lay of the land, commented.

  • Goal completed for this week.

Continue visiting and interacting through Facebookand Twitter, especially via relevant groups, several times a week.

  • Facebook – Groups, a bit of scrolling and sharing, comments.

  • Twitter – Just a quick peek; no interaction as yet.

Explore Linked In and WANATribe every other week. Both have things to offer, and are my newest social media connections. I want to get to know them better, slowly.

  • WANATribeI’m starting to get a feel for the place. I signed up for a class, and for the first day of the inaugural WANACon, as well. I would have loved to do both days, but I don’t think my family is ready for me to be less available two days running, nor can I easily see where I would find funds for both, just now (my Spousal Budget Coordinator assures me one day was possible, even with my blog upgrade – yup, he loves me!).

  • I feel that WANATribe may become a vital link in my writing network.

  • LinkedInPeeked in quickly; posted status update.

  • Still a bit on the fence about how well this will ultimately fit into my life, but willing to give it time…

  • Goal attained for this two weeks.

Notes of tidiness and joy in a cozy room for my growing girl.


Poetry Book Project:

Complete a rough draft compilation, with dedication, introduction, and conclusion.

  • Using the notes I wrote last week, I crafted a 274 word rough introduction.

  • This step completed before the January 27 update.

  • I will reread all poems in preparation for crafting the conclusion.

  • I will have all poems reread by February 1.

Gather art and images for inclusion in the book.

  • I created an Art and Images folder in the Queen of My Infinite Spaces binder, and successfully uploaded and saved one photo, as experimentation.

  • Move all the personal photos used in relevant blog posts to the new folder by January 30 update.

Gather resources for learning how to publish ebooks.

  • I know that I have some, mostly scattered aroundFacebook.

  • I created a tag in myPocket app for these, and added one link to it.

  • Do a search for other e-publishing sources, and continue adding links throughout the round.

Owning My Perspective and Experiences:

At least once weekly, use expository writing time to explore memories, wounds, healing, perspective, or personal philosophy.

  • I wrote just over 750 words, partly on the intro to this post; the rest on obedience vs. judgment, which will appear in The Unfettered Life.

  • Goal attained for this week.

Continue my eating and health goals from Round 4, 2012. Aim to get to the Y once alone, and once with the children, each week.

  • I made it to the Y for my third consecutive week. My right knee, which I injured while mowing the lawn last May, was quite painful, perhaps due to approaching storms.

  • I still managed to increase the duration, variety, and intensity of my workout (I am attempting to keep this gradual, because I want to be able to find a balanced and sustainable level that feels good to my body and soul).

  • Still mulling how to effect a car share, but it’s now become a higher priority, because Jeremiah mentioned today that he’d like to plan a trip to the State Museum…thus far, I have not gotten the children to the Y.

  • I am continuing to eat intuitively, with a recent increase in variety, and more attention to water and eating more foods closer to their original state.

  • My writing energy has encompassed Ebb and Slack Tides. A large shift in the kids’ sleep schedules, and my lingering mild queasiness and knee pain, meant a lower -key time, creatively, as did Jim’s weekend, and shifted workout days.

  • Other than writing and my workout, I also spent more time in Annalise’s room, did general hometending, and restocked the house wood supply against the coming cold.

Reclaiming Our Home:

  • Clean Annalise’s and Jeremiah’s bedrooms, creating spaces of welcome and haven for them, with room for their favorite things and activities.

  • Jim helped me bring in the very large new set of shelves.

  • I cleaned Lise’s closet shelves, bookshelves, and corner cubby drawers.

  • Together we organized most of the new shelves.

  • I began her corner cubby (last surface in the room!).

  • I’m on track to finish these by the 25th.

  • We will go through bins and bags, and her room will be done by the 30th, so that I will have a day off before shifting her room to maintenance mode and beginning Jeremiah’s on February 1st.

Work on general decuttering at least five days a week, focusing on a clutter-prone area when time, attention, and energy allow.

  • I spent time in general decluttering.

  • I cleaned some outgrown clothes from the table in the living room.

  • I have cleaned 2 of 3 days, so far this week, and am on track to meet this goal for the week.

A few last points:

I plan to work on each major goal every session, and work in the minor goals as my time and focus allow.

  • I managed every goal but the kitchen one and blogging ones (not listed here) this session – but that one is on hold until March, so doesn’t really count.

  • This is the best showing I’ve had, thus far. Yay me! =D

I will evaluate my goals, progress and preferences biweekly. on Sunday, and adjust accordingly.

  • Next evaluation will be posted as my Sunday, February 3 .


  1. Shah –

    Did you see the link in my last update? If not, I will post it over on my writer page, or maybe add it to the blogroll, since i have a nearly empty Writing Articles category.

    How is – I dunno. It’s me, as I am. I have lots of writing time as the kids pursue their passions, too…

    As for cleaning, I generally do not ever consider it done. It helps that I’m the tidiest person in the house – if I decide to ease up here or there, no one cares, and often they don’t even notice!

    For me, it’s just moving things forward. Another sinkful of dishes; another place where clutter was taking over. This and that…trust me – while my house won’t be condemned, it also isn’t going to be in House Beautiful, ever…my criteria is that it be a comfy place to live, and one that embraces our passions…

    Mostly, I think I just understand how I tick, and how my family does, and I’ve eliminated a lot of things that didn’t support the kind of life we and I want to live…

    So, all of my time is spent productively, and mostly joyfully…which takes a lot less energy than forcing myself to do something I don’t see value in…

  2. Oh my goodness, Shan! You got some much done!! I’m so proud of you for joining one of Kristen’s classes and registering for WANACon. You’ll be SO glad you did. 🙂

    Keep up the good work!

    • Jenny –

      People keep saying that! I find it so ironic – in school, writing was the “pipe dream” I devoted too much time to, instead of the important stuff…

      I was considered a classic underachiever!

      Truth is, I adore learning and growing, deepening and broadening – on my own terms. When I do what I love, I play with this, and toy with that, and when I take account, I somehow accomplished a lot of stuff that moves me closer to my goals…

      I’m really looking forward to stretching into the class and WANACon. It’s time… =D

      Thanks for stopping by!

    • Jenny –

      I got the first – hmmn, I will NOT call it homework – self-delving, maybe? – and I am already SO glad I did!

      I’m all achurn inside with all kinds of ideas struggling and tripping over each other to get out….

      It may take a few days, but it is so going to be worth it to ride this tide: I can already tell.

      When it breaks, and I can get it all written out, there will be a sea change there…maybe a life shift….

      I’m gathering myself for something big! =D

      Thanks for stopping by and spreading some sunshiny, cowbellish encouragement around!

  3. Glad you are doing the WANAcon… I’ve been looking at it, but now just doesn’t seem to feel right. There’ll be a time like that, but…

    Lots of fun stuff here. Have to confess, I miss the old look, but this is definitely more “you” than that was. ALso, some of your links aren’t coming through, such the the link to Jenny’s “sexy post”

    • Sys –

      I’ve learned to go with the feel, and usually don’t regret decisions I make that way.

      I think this is the first year I could comfortably do it, and in part because it falls during Jim’s vacation, so I will not be the solo adult here.

      I still might miss significant live portions, because life will be life, and sometimes life is that way (like last year’s “vacation” for instance…..).

      It seems that you have found some delightful ways to stretch yourself that feel just right.

      Hooray for us both – hooray for the Good Guys! *gratuitous Monkees Quote*, because I love you.

      I’ll report back on how it all goes! =D

    • Julie –

      Wow, it took me too long to get back to this comment..definitely something that I am be working on…

      I am so excited for my indulgence day of WANACon tomorrow! Jim plans to take the kids out for a good part of the day, so that I will be free to soak it all up! =D

Comments are closed.