Productive.

This week has been really productive.

I spent most of the weekend painting a project for Bjorn. I forgot how physically demanding painting can be. I can’t wait to show pictures of the thing I painted in a couple weeks. I’m really kind of proud of how it turned out.

The rest of the weekend I finished writing my first article for fiverr. I’m trying to start doing a few commissions here and there and make a little extra besides the book sales. I think it will help build my confidence too.

The last couple of days I finished some art work, uploaded it to redbubble and spoonflower, and was pretty happy with that. A few birds, mostly.

I’ve been toying with the idea of a booth at a con, but I don’t think I have anything to really set me apart yet. But I’m working on it. Maybe my fabric, but I’m not sure how to present that.

I have a few designs for resin molding that I want to try, and that could be an interesting direction to go. I just need something to make people come take a look, and some things they might want to buy.

Today I finished a set of bugs. I know, sounds weird, but they’re cute.

And they were fun to draw. It was a nice break from other things.

Tomorrow is back to the novel. I’m half way through the first round of edits, and I’d like to get most of it done by the end of the month. Let’s see how that goes.

Distractions and Productivity

There comes a point in every project, be it a corporate portfolio, a painting, song or book, that your mind starts wandering. Everything seems to be distracting you. The rhythm from the song playing, the TV in the next room, the anticipation of a show on TV. The cat rubbing up against your leg.

How do you get through that? For me, I take a break.

When you are getting that many distractions it’s sometimes just your brain saying “Hey, I’m working hard here, I need a break.”

I understand deadlines, and work ethics. You have to work with those, as well as your brains natural tendencies to overload with too much work. I find taking a ten to fifteen minute break is usually enough to get me back on track. (Unless the distraction is something living that is demanding attention, those are harder to ignore, especially children.)

There has actually been research that taking a break is good for productivity. It gives your mind a chance to wander, and then when you get back on task it is more at ease.

My favorite mini breaks are a quick level of one of my puzzle games. I have a lot to choose from. A quick walk around the house, or taking a break to wash some dishes, grab a cup of coffee, and other similar tasks are also on my list.

I have found that after prolonged time in my chair I NEED to get up and walk around. I’m not as young as I use to be, and the fact that sitting a lot causes premature death, I want to get up and walk around more anyway. Or, like today, write at my standing desk.

All of this has gotten me to here… with “Forgotten Ones” just three chapters of editing away from being finished. It feels so good to accomplish something!

Okay, done with the break, time to get back to the grind.

Validation!

I got my first payment from Amazon the other day. It wasn’t much, but it was nice to actually get something for all the work I’ve put into writing.

It made me feel validated that the thing I started is actually panning out. People actually like my writing, and want to read what I have to say. Not just read it, but pay for it.

Maybe it’s because I grew up without much money. Maybe it’s because I have gone without, and worked hard to get what I have. Who knows. Maybe it’s just my own ideals about money that make me feel this way. The idea that other people not only think my writing is good, but worth paying with their own hard earned money to read it… that gives me a big boost in confidence.

I know I don’t want to pay money for things I don’t like. Or even if something is just “eh” to me. But if I really like it, or the people behind it and want to support them because I know it’s a worthwhile cause, then I’ll part with some cash.

So, I’ve been extra productive this week. I will have all of my books out on Kobo by the end of the month, and hopefully three more stories (two shorts for Halloween, and then “Forgotten Ones”). One short is complete, just doing a final revision. “Forgotten Ones” is close. And the third, a YA Halloween short story, is half done.

The best news… I figured out how they beat the bad guy in “Forgotten Ones”. I was having a bit of trouble with that, but once I figured it out everything started flowing together.

So, to recap:
Paying for books is good.
It makes authors feel appreciated, and liked.
It encourages them to be more productive.
And reviews also help LOTS!

So go review or buy a book from your favorite author. They will really appreciate it. (Especially if it’s an indie where every sale/review counts.)