Closing out 2017

Photo by Shane Leonard (3)Whew!
The holidays are passing at a raging, hair-tangling speed on my end. How about with you?
In just a few short days 2017 will be over and a new year will begin. It’s been quite a year. I am trying to take a moment or three to catch my breath. 2018 is going to be a big one for me career-wise, so there is a part of me that really does

as want to take a breath so that’s what I am trying to do. Come January 3rd my schedule morphs into a sharp-toothed creature.

The show closes out 2017 with

slauthor, Myke Cole. Myke is the
author of the Shadow Ops Series and forth-coming The Armored Saint and a nonfiction history book Legion vs. Phalanx.

 
Myke and I talk New Year’s resolutions, the important role tabletop games have in the creative process, his recent release Siege Line and forthcoming works. And, quite a bit more.
 

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Google Play: https://goo.gl/CNSsha

tools in the mind box

To control the mind’s path.

This means more than one thing to me. I juggle handling my mind, pretty much every day. Creating a story is a way to control the mind—willing a story into existence with a string of thoughts—to make something extraordinary out of nothing. Learning how to tap into the creative part of my brain is another method of control I attempt.

Focus comes easier some days than others. The thing I learned about how to keep focused, is that I need to be obsessed. If I am lukewarm about a project or idea, it doesn’t happen. I write because I have to and thus made into my career.

Self-doubt, worry—all that negative shit that creeps in, really is always there, can be useful. Whether I’m chasing down a plot or waiting to hear back. Controlling what I do with those feeling and thoughts is the decision of what I do with the negativity. Imperfections and insecurities can be wielded for good or bad.

I’m not so much thinking out loud to get my juices flowing, though I am doing that but for all those of you who create, you know, it get’s weird.

I love what I do. Wouldn’t do anything else. But, sometimes, like last week, I’m just wasn’t hitting the ground feeling it. I had to court myself, ease myself into a mood. Today I’m relaxed and happy all my wheels are going in the direction I want them. Peace should come from inside, but recognition of hard work done well helps too.

It feels good to be grinding away.

One thing I’m finding critical? Holding myself accountable to finish something. I was waist deep in partial short stories. I had some rough drafts, sketched ideas, and ones that are more than ready to be sent on their way. Last week was my first week without a large project in my hands, so it was high time to tackle the seedlings and submit them. I’m halfway through that list. Another manuscript that has been on hold for months while I worked on the high fantasy rewrite. I’m going to break ground on it some time this week. It will be helpful to have something large to obsess about while edits on the other project take its course.
It looks like I started using this post to organize my thoughts on the week’s work. Goals and ideas of directions make all the difference. It’s tomatoes or beef, you know?

Maybe my ridiculous rambling helps you shake a few thoughts loose. It is leaning into the abstract that often leads to finding the clear lines on which to draw.

-J