Wednesday, January 09, 2013

Resolved for 2013

"God willing," my mother used to say, "'such and such' will happen." Today, on this rainy day in Houston on January 8, I say, "God willing, here are my ambitious plans for 2013. I will have to prioritize and be quite disciplined."
I am reminded that it is good to put one's plans in writing, as the very act of putting pen to paper or fingers to keyboard makes goals real. So here are my plans:

1. I will write for a couple of hours every single day. Preferably in the morning before checking emails, taking calls, making appointments. Morning is when the mind is still filled with sleep and dreams, but with a new day's kick of energy.
I've already begun Part II of the memoir piece written 18 months ago for 'Coping with Transition: Men Money, Motherhood and Magic.'  And last fall, I mapped out a book of personal essays derived from this blog on life as an older woman. The memoir will be a part of this book. Feel it will appeal to baby boomer women who are approaching or living those last precious 10 to 25 years. I do feel the press of time.
BTY, my writing group is self publishing an on-line book this year. It'll be great practice for self publishing my own book of essays.
2. Rockbridge Times will get less attention. I'll use those blogging hours for the book. That doesn't mean I won't check in with progress reports, but serious writing time will take the place of blogging.
3. In the next six weeks, I plan to scan the rest of PS's black/white negatives from the 1980s. She and I have hundreds of negatives from those life changing days in the mid-1980s when we each divorced and found that photography might document those changes.
A photographer friend is giving me a refresher lesson in high resolution scanning in a week and then I'm on it. After the scanning, PS and I will give thought to having selected images fine printed or put into a book, a project we've talked about for several years. It's high time to complete the first step - the scans.
4. I promised my brother and sister that by February 1, I will make a small book of selected family photos to put with the special boxed gifts we wrapped over the holidays for Mom and Dad's seven grandchildren. Wouldn't you know that I have a stack of the intended book photos in this house, but need to put my hands on them in order to get started.
5. Several days ago, I was asked by Houston Press to be a part of their annual Artopia, which opens on January 26. I accepted their invitation as an inducement to get to the studio and finish those collages that have been waiting for final applications of acrylic gel and varnish for several months. I am pondering how I can turn a 10 - 16 foot linear wall exhibition into an mini-installation with the addition of two vintage chairs.
6. There is more that must happen in the studio if it is to function. I intend to go through each shelf and box and reorganize. Two shelving units are filled with fabric that will come back into the house, giving me more wall space. I can move that long work table that Beth Wray's dad gave me before the holidays into the studio. An option to working on the floor.
6. ES and I plan a trip in 2013 to Rome and Florence, Sienna, Pompeii and Venice. I can't imagine anything better, as the painting and sculpture that we'll see are his favorites. He will revisit and I will have a moment to moment tour guide.
7. Aggie and I finally traded our Paris photos - this task, on the way back from Terlingua. I am eager to sort through and make a picture book of weeks in Paris. I am printing out those blog posts from Paris, for Aggie to eread, edit and add her two cents so we'll have a narrative. I have not put together a time table for this project, but I so love to organize images that I think I'll be stealing time from writing to do it.
8. There are other picture books in my head, for which I am laying the ground work. They'll have text and may look and feel like 'Overheard,' the book I made for Second Seating  and which can be had at Blurb.com
9. Am toying with the idea of an art, photography, crochet sales weekend with several other artists in lte spring. Need to find the space. Could generate extra funds for that trip to Rome.
I'll make changes in my days:
1. Will spend less time reading emails, Facebook and on-line news/op-ed pieces.
2. Will sort and file important papers right away, as they come in the mail. I will use a fat  Sharpie to label those files, so I can keep track of them. I will put all the files on one shelf.  You think this is easy for me? It is not easy.
3. Will interrupt my NYT subscription more often - for weeks at a time.
4. What about those paper piles? Can I possibly throw more stuff away? Please do not laugh here. My life is made of assorted piles of paper and books.
5. Must group meetings and appointments so whole days are open for working.
6. Remember to write. Every day.

There must be time for family, many of whom are in Seattle. ES is a constant in my life. I treasure time with women friends. All must be factored in. It would help if I had better sleep patterns and fewer health issues. Hurray for last November's atrial fib ablation procedure. Helped both my heart and skin. I must give thought to resigning from board positions, which would mean attending far fewer meetings. And when will that public art project with METRO begin? I've signed a contract and believe my part of the design plan will begin mid-2013.

A friend is making me a spread sheet on which I can allot time in categories.  I talked about a spread sheet a year ago but it didn't happen. However, I think it's the only way I can see how I actually spend time and what activities I can alter to create new work. At last, I'll know how much time I spend in doctor's offices or on house maintenance, personal paperwork, food preparation. It's a chunk.

I have one very long time special friend who will read this post and say I am absolutely nuts. I may be. I also know that a palm reader told me I have a strong line on my hand that translates, "It is never enough." So, I must default to purpose, discipline and clear headedness. Do you begin to see that an imaginary admin assistant is exactly who or what I need? Plus, Mom's 'God willing,' admonition.

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