Developing a Strategy

This blog has been less of a writer’s blog and more of an author’s blog. To recap, I got sick a few weeks back and visited the doctor, the first visit in a long time due to Covid. She put me on a medication my father took for years to prevent or slow disease progression, specifically heart disease. That medication made me very sick. So, here I am today, with nothing to show in the way of progress. Everything I had set up to make progress on for the last month is still sitting there waiting for me to get it done. I’m off that medication and my life is running more smoothly now. Ironically, my cat Joey got sick about the same time and is now on medications which are making him feel better. Definitely a trying time having us both feeling under the weather.

It’s all made me very frustrated. I’ve produced three which aren’t bad but when I look at them as book covers my inner critic refuses to allow they’re good enough. So I’ve come to this point in my life, a point I’ve visited several times over the years I’ve been writing or crafting any thing: When do I decide my work is good enough? When I do approve of what I’m producing? It’s so easy to look at something I spent hours creating and believe it’s no good. It’s harder to do that over time. Something I crocheted at the moment I finish is “okay” but if I fold it up and store it away for cold weather, once I pull it out and look at it anew and with fresh eyes, it becomes “beautiful”.

My desire to punch out books covers as fast as I can crochet granny squares has not manifested itself in reality so I’ll fall back on what I know to be true. An hour a day can accomplish great things. When I first started writing, an author I was corresponding with told me that her secret was to write one page a day. At the end of a year, all the pages equal a book. That is a strategy which works on many things from home repairs and remodeling (just spend an hour a day when you get home from work and before you know it the big project will be done), writing, crafting, and housework. I’ve spent so many hours in front of Illustrator crafting a well done image only to throw it out the next day and all I’ve actually accomplished is getting sick of the whole thing. So I’ll fall back on what I know to be true. Strategy wins the war.

Oddly enough, during this whole ordeal with the medication reaction, the only thing I kept thinking is that I wanted to start quilting again. I haven’t quilted in decades! I used to do it a lot when I was caring for my grandmother when I was in my late teens but put it aside as requiring too much attention when I was caring for my schizophrenic mother. Now I’m only caring for myself and Joey so I’ve pulled out the new Singer sewing machine I bought three years ago and set it up in the only space I’ve got room, which is the recently renovated laundry room, and I’ve been quilting. I kind of went crazy at the fabric store but the lady at the fabric cutting station told me if I quilted for an hour a day, I’d get it all worked up and finished. Amazing how that strategy is embraced by so many others on so many different projects.

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