Tag Archives: discover potential

Learning From The Apes | On Language, Writing and Motivation

NaNoWriMo – But Not Only | November 2011, Day 8

Are you ready for an inspirational break?

“…these apes have language. It’s a geometric language…She’s also saying the name of that, with her voice.”

“We found that the most important thing for permitting Bonobos to acquire language is not to teach them. It’s simply to use language around them, because the driving force in language acquisition is to understand what others that are important to you, are saying to you. Once you have that capacity, the ability to produce language comes rather naturally and rather freely. So we want to create an environment in which Bonobos like all of the individuals with whom they are interacting. We want to create an environment in which they have fun, and an environment in which the others are meaningful individuals for them.

No need to drive yourself – let yourself be driven: not by other people’s opinion, should’s or dont’s, but by what is important to YOU.

Happy procrastination ;)

Maria

My word count Day 7: blog: 0 – novel: 0

Btw: You can still join the Writing Buddies :) – and it’s not too late to sign up for NaNoWriMo 2011, either ;)

Easy access to all posts this month via a new menu category: Specials >> November 2011: NaNoWriMo – But Not Only.

The Enermazing Weekly Ticker (12) 24th – 30th October 2011

+ +++ +++ Site News +++ +++ +

Remember the door behind the curtain? Well, I managed to unlock the lock with a hairpin and some WD-40. The door opened by itself as if only waiting to be released from bondage, and I stepped outside.

Nothing had prepared me for what I saw there – the glimpse of green grass and blue sky I had had through the gap had been totally misleading…at the best. In the light shade of a tree and hidden from view by the door was a wicker chair and a small table with a stack of ruled paper, my favourite fountain pen, and a calender leaf of November with NationalNovelWritingMonth written in bright red all across…and I’ve so tried to ignore it…

That hairpin was my idea to share my last year’s NaNo experience, the comments to What I Learned Through NaNoWriMo were the lubricant.

Tempting, very tempting after half a year of non-stop non-fiction (and that includes reading). Should I give in?

I decided on a compromise. I went back inside and filled The Enermazing Project from the steam-cooker into the slow-cooker.

Compromise first half: I’ll only attempt 25k words of fiction.
Compromise second half: On this blog, I’ll do a post a day all through November – which may not make up 25k of non-fiction, but must suffice.

The theme for the November posts will be “Writing” (who would have guessed…), to be more precise: “How To Survive NaNoWriMo Healthy And Sane”.

As not every visitor to this blog will be interested in reading about writing, and some may not give a, uhm, dime about it, many of these daily posts will come from My Enermazing Toolbox, with tips and tricks on how to make writing – or whatever else you do with your life – easier and more enjoyable.

If you are such a non-writer, please substitute the above title with “How to Survive Life Healthy And Sane”, and see and find out how you can transform the writing tips into life tools ;)

Hope to see you on Tuesday :)

Maria

+ +++ +++ Quote of the week  +++ +++ +

Every thought willingly contemplated, ever word meaningly spoken, every action freely done, consolidates itself in the character, and will project itself onward in a permanent continuity.

Henry Giles

+ +++ +++ this & that +++ +++ +

I’ve had a “Writing” category since I started this blog, and I was a bit shocked to discover that I’ve done so far only one lonely post related to writing, on 3rd August:  Featured: WriteGirl.

I’ve updated the post now with a few links – and reveal whether The Communicatrix had to shave her head or not ;)

NaNoWriMo 2011 | Looking For Writing Buddies

Yesterday I signed up for NaNoWriMo, knowing very well that due to other obligations there’s no way I can make it all the way through to the 50k words.

Today I realised that I can’t participate officially because what I’m itching to do is to – finally – finish an old project with the working title “Magnifica Revisited”.

My personal solution: To commit myself to writing 25k words of fiction from 1st to 30th November 2011, which will be difficult enough to reach this year.

I’ve placed a progress meter in the sidebar. As I prefer writing the first draft by hand (and an exact word count is a bit of a bother, as I remember from the last NaNoWriMo), I’ll update word count by page average, counting only entirely new scenes.

Note: To get your own free html progress meter, log in to storytoolz and follow the instructions.

"writing buddies" (by Sandro Botticelli)

"writing buddies" by Sandro Botticelli - and, no, that's not the original title ;)

Official participant or not, I’ll pop in to NaNoWriMo now and then – I don’t want to miss the pep talks ;) – and I’m looking for writing buddies.

If you’d like to be my writing buddy, state your commitment in the comment section below. I’ll create a blog post for every day in November where you can update your daily progress.

Let’s do it! :grin:

Maria

What I learned through NaNoWriMo

November is NaNoWriMo – the (inter)National Novel Writing Month.

Last year I participated for the first time in NaNoWriMo. What I learned during those 30 days had not only impact on quality and quantity of my writing (fiction and non-fiction), but also changed my approach to writing – and other life areas as well :)

I wrote this list of “What I learned through NaNoWriMo” beginning of December 2010. When I reviewed it today for this post, I was surprised at how complete – and still valid – it was. I have not altered my last year’s statements, only grouped them.

Perfectionism vs. flexibility – dealing with obstacles

  • how to plod on even when I didn’t know where I was going or how to get there
  • apart fom finding and using small bits of time I also realized that “having to make” time for something as opposed to “having” the time to do it – makes it much more likely that I use the “made” time for the task I made it for, instead of procrastinating or doing something else – I value the time, because I made it valuable by limiting it
  • my worst enemies are my own doubts – can I write 2500 word in one day if necessary? Yes, I can. They may be crap – but that’s for revision to fix ;)
  • not to be overwhelmed by (or back off) a difficult, confusing or giant long-term goal, but to break it into achievable bits (okay, I knew and made use of that one, but I tended to avoid the real biggies)

Focussing on results WHILE enjoying the process

  • setting quantified goals = results instead of how much time I spent on it, but I do combine it with short sprints of max 25 minutes
  • I discovered many time saving techniques I can also apply in other areas, for instance not procrastinating with details while still in the draft stage
  • It’s about finishing this one step: the draft = getting the story down. If there’s no story, just ideas, what am I going to base my revision on?

My own writing preferences

  • although I type a lot faster than I write (legibly) by hand, the result with paper and pen is better and quicker in the end, as I’m not tempted to correct – and the story flows better
  • I discovered my average draft writing speed and rhythm, one I feel comfortable with at long distance – which helps me also to plan more realistically (I was surprised that when doing short sprints  I can hand-write 250-300 words in ten minutes – I focus on “writing” instead of “thinking”)
  • I found out how long I can concentrate on focused writing, and learned to recognize AND respect the signs telling me it’s better to have many breaks (as long as I’m eager to go on) rather than risk mental exhaustion and lose time during recovery
  • looking forward to revision instead of dreading it as a boring task

Switching on and off as desired

I usually don’t have problems with focus and concentration as long as I enjoy what I’m doing ;) but for some aspects NaNoWriMo helped me to find better solutions – with benefits spreading into other life areas as well:

  • how to switch off when I’m full of enthusiasm – and still not lose momentum
  • how to get going at a time when it’s “inconvenient”, that is when I’m tired, have “something better” to do, “don’t feel like it”
  • how to get started again, especially with complex or ongoing projects, or when I hit an obstacle and get stuck
  • how to switch instantly into writing mode AND how to switch off (took me a couple of weeks, though, to learn it)
  • how to use small time spans of 10 or 15 min (“oh, I still got 10 min” instead of “10 min is not worth starting”)

Even if you never thought of writing a novel, NaNoWriMo is an experience worth having :)

No idea what to write? On the site you can even find titles to choose from, or adopt a plot – so, no excuses ;)

All you need to do to participate is to sign up.  (And perhaps inform your immediate social environment that you might not be quite your usual self for the next four weeks…)

Link to the blog:  The Office of Letters and Light

Stay tuned for my long list of tips on how to survive NaNoWriMo 2011 healthy and sane ;)

Maria

The Enermazing Weekly Ticker (11) 17th – 23rd October 2011

+ +++ +++ Site News +++ +++ +

This week a couple of gales slammed some doors shut on The Enermazing Project – including side entrances. Shocked by all that noise, it took me a while to recover.

While standing there, I noticed a gentle breeze from the back… Hidden by a heavy curtain was not a built-in storage closet as I had believed, but a door, slightly ajar and fastened with a chain and lock. I haven’t yet discovered the key to it, but what I’ve seen through the gap promises something far better than I had planned :)

My apologies for this short note (and if I haven’t visited your latest posts) – I’m off searching for the key, or a “chain saw” ;)

 Don’t focus on the noise – listen for the breeze:)

Maria

+ +++ +++ Quote of the week  +++ +++ +

In oneself lies the whole world and if you know how to look and learn, the door is there and the key is in your hand. Nobody on earth can give you either the key or the door to open, except yourself.

 Jiddu Krishnamurti

How Does Synchronicity Affect Our Lives?

This post consists of a comment I wrote onSynchronicity: New Age Fantasy or Face of the Future?, a brilliant article by Earthpages.org – the comments are well worth reading, too :)

Over the last years, synchronicity has become normal to me, but sometimes it still feels “weird” to talk about it.

It began with remembering certain “coincidences” which led to asking “could I possibly repeat this”, testing, trust, conviction and regular use – which, for me, confirms and reinforces further that synchronicity is “real”.

During the past few months I’ve noticed a rapidly increasing number of people, locally and on the internet, opening up to this concept, and once they open up they begin to experience.

Image of the top layers of the earth's atmosph...

Image via Wikipedia

What does synchronicity imply?

So how does synchronicity manifest on a larger than personal scale, that is collectively for communities, countries, globally, universally? Combined with taking responsibility and choosing trust and peace over fear and fear-mongering, a lot has been accomplished; a few examples: the Wall in Germany coming down 1989, the peaceful (at least on the side of the “rebels”) Egyption revolution this spring, the Belgians doing very well without a national government for about 500 days already. (see also: “Political” and “Politics” | Definition | Etymology)

Looking at synchronicity from a theoretical point of view, the trend converges towards Zero Delay = Now = instant connections and exchange. In our time-dependent system (including our experience of time being linear) we may still be heading towards Now, but acknowledging the small now’s (= every moment) is part of the whole, already.

Collective consciousness consists of individual consciousness-es contributing to the whole – or put simply, sticking one’s head out takes courage, but the more people share our opinion, the easier it gets to talk about it, and the more “normal” and accepted it becomes. This happens with every technical or artistic invention, every scientific or philosophical insight which contribute to the “pool”.

What next?

What I’m wondering about is: What is the next stage, what does synchronicity imply? What do we need to learn in order to cope with synchronicity on a grand scale? In my mind, this comes down to learning how to choose and focus on how we want our world to be – rather than stating or complaining about (and thus focusing on) what we don’t want.

What do you think?

Maria