Saturday, January 16, 2010

A life you don't live is still lost

The first week back to school and work following winter break felt much like being hit by a bus. Repeatedly. This was due at least in part to me overestimating what I could accomplish during my "free" time. I pried my fingers loose from the goals I'd set, took several deep breaths, and reminded myself that I wasn't on my new work schedule just yet, so I wasn't going to get that much work done for myself for another couple weeks. This week was mostly a transition period between my previous 25 hours/week with the kindergarten/preschool crowd to my 10 hours/week schedule which will officially start next week. It also involved the usual smattering of dentist, orthodontist, and other appointments. And on Friday I got to play roadie for Joey, as we hauled his drums in to church so he could play with the pianist and choir for an all-school mass. I overheard a couple of teachers plotting to get him back for a repeat performance sometime, so I think he did well. (I thought he was awesome, of course, but we all know how objective mothers are about such things.)

My primary projects for 2010 are Crowmaker, the 2YN class over at Forward Motion, and my Fiction Writing elective over at the middle school. Actually, with the priorities in the reverse order, pretty much. If anything happens with the novella I finished and subbed late in 2009, I'll probably shuffle Crowmaker off to the side and work on a follow-up project for that same publisher. But that's a big "if," so I'm not counting on it.

The way electives are set up over at the middle school, the kids have the option to switch to a different offering mid-year. No one in my first semester class opted to leave. I got five new students, all of whom seem as enthusiastic thus far as my initial group. Our first class of the second semester, I gave my pep talk which is summed up with "No attempt at writing a story is a waste of time if you learned something from it." Then I asked my first semester students, even if they hadn't quite finished their story or weren't completely happy with how it turned out, did they feel like they knew more about writing than they had at the beginning of the school year? I got a big round of enthusiastic nods in reply. I am pleased, and my motivation is renewed.

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