Welcome to my First Post

maiden blog post is dedicated to my new friends and fellow extreme novelists. I
am rather self-conscious about taking up group time in class, and hopefully over the
course of the week this can also help in having others see what it’s been like
for one classmate. Someone may find something relatable. Here goes.
Thu 3 Oct 6:37AM. For the first few minutes I couldn’t find
my flash drive so that I could back up my document as I worked. “Oh well, guess
I can’t write if I can’t make back-ups of my work right away!” 1. I got over
it. 2. Just as I got over it, my flash drive made its appearance.
Okay. I just went over and made edits/revisions on the three
lines above. Sighs.
7:38AM. Done one hour so far, 837 words. Only took 2 minutes
out of the 60 minute writing period I wanted to spend this morning to write the
lines above. J  Next time I will only make these notes on
separate time, not my formal “writing” time. Otherwise I won’t do it. That’s a
promise. I am aiming for 1,000 words today, hopeful about hitting 1,000 with
the additional 30 minutes I plan to spend later today.
Note for next early morning writing sessions at home, make sure I have a
banana, or ask dear husband to start boiling me an egg if he comes downstairs
before me. Also ask him to close the basement door or not have NPR turned on so
loud down there. I suppose I could use my ipod. But then I wouldn’t hear my son
when he wakes up. Or these days, I wouldn’t hear him coughing…
8:20AM Now I can think more clearly about the first 60
minutes. Report: only about one or two minutes of screen-staring. Not looking
back up to add or change stuff was exponentially harder. The key, for me I
think, is to train my eyes. Just
don’t let them wander up, man.
My biggest challenges are procrastinating, perfectionism,
and finding a balance with family time.
The themes that permeate my stories are my love of history
and of spirituality and the supernatural world, and the healing of
old—family—wounds. For this book, my history fixation is centered on New York
City immigrant history, Ellis Island, Lower East Side, all that fabulous fun
stuff, particularly as it pertains to women.
Another big theme that is both personal and an element in my
writing is identity in general. I wrote my dissertation ten years ago on
language and Puerto Rican identity, and the overall question remains a constant
for me. How do we construct and present our various identities or personas to
the world, whether it’s cultural heritage, gender roles, as wife and mother or
as a single person, etc.? I am, of course, in the throes of navigating this
very question constantly. In the 1990s it was student, single gal travelling
the world. Then it was newlywed college professor. Now it’s wife and mother. I
love it. And I intend to make that wife, mother, AND WRITER next. I constantly,
constantly vacillate between transparency / being an open book and fear of over
sharing, and between obsessive high achieving and expert half-assedness.  Writing holds the answer for me.
Here is a picture of all my things ready to go for last
night’s first class: Quarters for parking, my writing contract printed and
signed (with notes), and food. This was at noon yesterday. Don’t worry, I did
put the smoothie back in the fridge. I’ll let you all guess where this falls
between the high achieving and half-assedness … And we will see how this keeps
up as the next eight weeks progress.
5:07PM. 1300 words in today’s 90 minute exercise!
Not bad. Plus I (*think* I’ve) started a blog! Please feel
free to write comments—if this did, in fact work—and share how it is going for
you. Sending you productive creative vibes; happy writing, friends.
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  1. Well done Sandra, it worked, thanks for following me. I think I'm following you too 🙂 Takes a while to figure out you have done well. Keep it up x

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