Weaving Through Discord: ROW80 Update, 11/4/13


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So, ROW80 is the writing challenge that knows I have a life – and, also, that life is not all unicorns and rainbows, all the time.

It’s been a hard few days, here. Sometimes even good marriages have rough and jagged places, where old wounds fester and burst. We’re in one of those places. Something that has always been a pressure point in our relationship has become abraded, and some resolution must be arrived at.


Always before, I’ve tried to force that, but, this time I can see that that would be a mistake. I am instead learning to let go of expectations from my spouse, and instead to focus on being attentive to myself, to clarify my goals and purpose – and to leave Jim the time and space to decide how – and if –  he wants to approach it.


This is new ground, and a little scary. Writing helps, and so do all of you who are here with me as I grow up a little….thank you all!

My Goals Buffet Platter Samplings:


Focus points:

  • Queuing posts.

  • Offering a sustainable schedule of features.

Maintain four non-ROW80 posts weekly, throughout the round. Target attained!

Keep up with comments; or post an explanation. I tend to lose track when I am especially creation-focused. Target attained!

  • NaNo-late, but done.

Five posts queued for each Regular Feature: Coffee and Conversation; Wordless Wednesday; WIPpet Wednesday; and Saturday’s Share – November 1. Pending.

  • Used all queued posts during NaNo prep.

  • Eked out posts a day or two ahead; hope to build momentum, going forward.

  • New goal: Queue posts as possible during November; intensify effort if KOSAP complete before November 30.


Focus points:

  • Noveling-in-progress.

  • NaNo Planning

  • NaNo Drafting

To Be or Not to Be:

Completerough draft: ~200,000 words totalOctober 31. November 30.

  • Chapter Fifty-Seven: 2,401 new words.

  • WIP total: 201,430/ ~ 200,000 words. Word count target exceeded!

  • October total: 12,088/ ~11,899 words.

  • November, to date: 586 words.

Plan King of Shreds and Patches (A Trueborn Warp Series Star Trek fan fiction novel);complete Rock Your Plot planning exercise/ scene-by-scene outline. – October 31. Target exceeded!

  • All steps completed; with 1.5 days to spare!

  • Began creating “cheat sheets” for each scene – a quick whowhatwherewhenwhyhow page to attach to their Scrivener files! =)

King of Shreds and Patches – Complete ~ 100,000 word draft during NaNoWriMo 2013. On target.

  • Completed Scenes: 4/60. One fifteenth of the way, on day two!

  • Word Count: 8,609/ ~100,000.

  • New Words: 8,609.

And to wrap up the prepping phase:

Chart vital stats for each scene: (the old whowhatwherewhenwhyhow). On target.

  • 11/60 scenes completed. One sixth done!


Set up scenes in Scrivener. On target.

  • 10/60 scenes set up. One sixth done!

Double check all notes and prep for consistency. On target.

  • 11/60 scenes completed. One sixth done!

  • Making minor tweaks as I create my”cheat sheets” for each scene.


Focus point:

  • Tidying and beautifying my physical, virtual, and interior spaces.

Keep email inbox clear. Check at least twice weekly; sort, file, and delete each time. Target attained!

  • Still good!


Keep Spam folder clear. Check at least twice weekly; sort, file, and delete each time.Target attained!

  • Yup!


Focus points:

  • Relationships.

  • Exercise and Movement.

  • Passions.

Make time and sweetness for Jim, in ways that are meaningful to us both, and in ways that are important to him. Target attained!

  • Remained (mostly) nor-reactive during messy discord.

  • Clarifying my beliefs.

  • Making peace with the discord, and tending to myself, so as not to make a difficult time more so.

  • Allowing him space and time.

Do the same for the children, individually and together. Target attained!

  • Tended their feelings with conversation, affection, and listening.

  • I’ve tried to be level and calm and sweet with them, to give them space, and to be patient with their reactions.

Immerse myself in writing, living, and being with my family, striving for presence. On target.

  • Intense presence within my family life. I can’t navigate everyone’s emotions – including my own – otherwise, and that seems crucial, right now.

  • Attending to my own needs and purpose.

  • I’ve developed a strategy that will – I hope! – keep me calm when the timefor resolution comes.

  • An immediate benefit to the conflict – the emotionally intense early scenes of my NaNo WIP. That purging ground is helping me to remain calm, elsewhere in life. Win/win.

  • Oh, and Enterprise , all by myself, indulgently. =)

Regularly evaluate; adjust as needed. On target.

  • Intense evaluations ongoing.

Practice movement daily, for at least a few minutes. Target attained!

  • A very moderate workout, walking, hometending moving small stack of firewood.

Add a little more intention to this, and remember to move even when in long nighttime writing sessions, at least occasionally. On target.

  • Not so great…I was otherwise focused.


Work out at least once a week. Target attained!

  • Done on Tuesday.

Get outside for at least a few minutes each day. Target attained!

  • Yes! Firewood on Wednesday and Saturday, trick-or-treating Thursday, photos on Friday.

Allow time and space to indulge my passions. Target attained!

  • Yup. Giving this special focus, during discord.


Read, comment, and share others’ posts and links. Target attained!

  • Several of this week’s WIPpet Wednesday posts. Intend to get to more in the next day or two.

Tend sponsor duties promptly. Target attained!

Wanna sneak up on other ROWers?

All photos credited to Annalise S. Burton.  Used with permission.


  1. “Weaving through discord” says it all — Your strengths in commitment, discipline, sheer creativity and love will see you through this time, hopefully in ways that strengthen you, your relationship, and your family. And your writing! What is love if not acceptance and celebration of the other? My answer is to cherish each day — as you do.

    • Beth,

      I love this! Thank you so much for dropping in!

      Things are getting better, in a way that’s gradual and real. As always, things got better when I started focusing on my own intentions, which let me stop trying to control what Jim would do. And that gave him what I too often, don’t…his own time and space.

      I wasn’t raised in a compassionate home, but I keep learning…

      And, honestly, if there is going to be a disagreement, I would rather deal with it with peace, intention, and the beginnings of compassion; than with anger, hurt, and insistence on getting my own way…

  2. Sorry to hear that things are still on the upheaval, Shan. You know, as I do, that this too shall fade. It’d be nice to say it was done and finished, but… that’s a process that may or may not take as many years and stages as it took for things to get screwy in….

    Strength, love and hugs!

    • Sys,

      I actually think it;’s good that things didn’t just disappear after 3 days,because that’s a pattern that tends to let the issue fade away, without really ever getting resolved…and so, it keeps coming back.

      You know, maybe better than almost anyone but Jim and the kids,.how I can push. Whatever else happens, it seems to me that this is growth for me, to wait for things to evolve as they will.

      the “screwiness” comes from childhood, for both of us. It’s funny, but there was a time when I had no idea how much we are both affected by our childhoods. learning to make a real, enduring peace ….it’s hard, when childhood isn’t peaceful.

      Eventually, i am hoping not for things to fade, but instead to finally and truly be able to move forward from a place of compassion, so that we can unravel the weaving that’s gone wrong, and set things to rights.

      As always, much love. It’s good to know you’re there. ❤

      • Resolution with compassion… I don’t think you could ask for a better combination. I believe you will get there eventually. The process won’t always be pleasant, but the results will be infinitely worth the effort.

        And yes, I am here. You’ve been “here” for me so many times in the past, it feels natural to do the same.

  3. I hope you and Jim get things straightened out soon. My marriage went through some rough patches in the past, and I’m glad we got through everything. We’ve now been married 31 years, and things are better than they have ever been. That’s what I wish for you.

    • Lauralynn,

      I don’t know if any marriage that lasts does so without these times. I have a sibling who, several years ago, when I mentioned we were having a disagreement, boasted that she did not argue with her spouse anymore…and, within a couple of years, that couple was divorced.

      It takes passion to argue, and to work things through. In sixteen years, it has always been worth it to get through these times, as we grow.

      I’m happy things are calm and sweet for you now (and that your husband is feeling well these days!).

      They will be for us, again, eventually…and, if we actually get to the point of resolution-for-now, things will be sweeter, maybe, than they’ve been in sixteen years of a mostly wonderful marriage.

  4. Hehe – I loved the “Enterprise, all by myself.” *clears throat* I do that, too.

    Marriage is a tricky business at times. If you believe in God, prayer helps. Even if you don’t, prayer for that other person has a way of straightening out your attitude and clarifying the situation. Focus on the positive. Looks like you’re doing that. Have a great week!

    • Kathrese,

      I tend to feel that there is something sacred in each of us. At the heart of prayer, I think, is compassion, and that’s something I’ve been learning, over the last few years.It wasn’t part of my childhood, nor, really, my husband’s.

      I know that the only thing I can control is my own actions. I also know that this is perhaps the single biggest issue between us, and that it’s something that needs to be detangled in pieces, because, for both of us, the attitudes and wounds involved go all the way back to our childhoods.

      There is no doubt in my mind that Jim is a wonderful man, and that, most of the time, we complement each other very well.

      And, with over sixteen years of marriage, I also know that these times do smooth out, hopefully with some new growth and understanding on both sides.

      Always before, though, I’ve pushed for a resolution, and, this time, I’ve come to understand that I need to wait it out, and allow Jim to fully process his own thoughts and feelings….it’s a little uncomfortable, giving up the control I had when I attempted to force resolutions

      Hopefully, that will lead to a greater, deeper, and truer peace between us. Certainly, it will lead to those things for me.

      Thank you for your well-wishes…and prayers are always appreciated! =)

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