I’m pretty pleased with how December turned out considering I was way behind and had no idea what I was going to do for my monthly artwork until the eve of the 31st! Since this is the last month in my 2014 homemade calendar series, I want to take a moment to observe some things I’ve learned in the course of doing it.
- The project began as simply a more colorful way to mark off the days– I thought it’d be an excuse to air out my art supplies. But as the months went on, it evolved from basic colored squares to full out compositions. Which was awesome! But very time consuming.
- I never regret the time I spend on my art projects. But I did, as the bar was raised, begin to feel a certain pressure each month to produce something at least as good or better. Which meant ALWAYS putting in solid time and effort. That part made it stressful when I had to cast about for subject ideas.
- But at the same time, I’m glad I had this sort of structure in place– it meant I was making at least one physical art work each month.
In conclusion: It’s been fun but also somewhat obligatory– which I suppose is normal of any pursuit one commits oneself to. It’s like showing up for a class or a job you enjoy: As much as you love the work and the content, it comes with pressure and deadlines and sometimes burnout. But you have to show up and turn in your stuff anyway, regardless of whether or not you want to. This is how progress is made, how projects are finished. I’m going to try to take that lesson forward as I set my priorities for 2015. Look for elaboration soon! And finally…
Happy New Year! 🙂
Ok, I admit it: It’s become more about the art than crossing off the days. Which is great for getting in a minimum of one art project a month, but not for observing the date. I think next year I’ll go with a more practical calendar.
December is always a variable time of year– lots going on, people visiting, normal processes interrupted. I can say with certainty there will be reading, revising, guitar, and French for me, though it is difficult to say how much. I also recently bought a deck of tarot cards (I’ve been interested in learning more about them ever since some research I did for a story) and hope to start acquainting myself with reading basics in the coming weeks.
In other news: as of last month I completed one of my biggest goals for the year, which was to read 52 books, or roughly one a week! And there’s still several weeks to go…(Here I come, Landline and Thieves of Manhattan.)
What will your end of year activities look like?
Here is October!
November will include more revising, more planning the next project, and a couple little side things for fun. Also, though I’m not doing Nanowrimo myself this year, I plan to attend some write-ins and keep posting #nanowritetips each day on Twitter and Tumblr.
What will you be doing this month?
Here’s September! Man, I wish my scanner could do all those pinks justice.
Focuses for this month will include manuscript revisions, planning for a November #writetip project, and a new approach I’m excited to try towards brainstorming story ideas. I’m also going to try to get into the habit of freewriting daily, even if it’s only for 10 minutes, just to get the creative juices flowing.
Here’s August! I think it’s my favorite so far this year. It was also an incredible month!
September will see revisions of one book, continued planning for the next, and at least one art or blog project.
What are your goals for September?
Here’s July! This time I experimented with collage and I’m excited to do something new for August.
Goals for this month include, but are not limited to:
- Finishing up the first draft of my middle grade WIP (two chapters to go)
- Mapping out my next book!
This month is brought to you by tropical Skittles. Skittles: taste the lurid color!
And now on to July, in which I will continue the first draft of a project and have plans for several short term art works. Stay tuned for details!
In the meantime, if you’re a fellow writer or book lover on tumblr, I am finally starting to get the hang of that young person’s jungle gym. You can find me on tumblr here.
Hope your summers are off to a good start!
Here is the finished page I made for May, this month using nail polish, soft pastel chalks, and oil pastels to mark off the days. Originally I intended to use nail polish all the way through, but the polish wasn’t having any of it. In fact, I thought I’d ruined the month by the third square– the paint came out sticky and uneven and looked like crayon! But I kept going, tried some other things, and in the end I rather liked the mix of smooth and painterly-looking strokes. And the colors, even the weaker ones, turned out like shades of ice cream and cake! Appropriate for Marie Antoinette.
Looking ahead to June, my main focus will be on writing the first draft of my new book: a MG project involving a girl who gets trapped in a world through the cupboard, and must use her wits and its wonders to get home. What about you?
Materials for April’s homemade calendar page include colored Sharpies, one silver Galaxy marker, and a blue poster paint Sharpie.
I swear I entered a timewarp this month– I can’t believe April is over already! My WIP went through another 2-3 drafts, with material added, cut, rearranged, and tightened and the word count fluctuated from 87 to 94 back to 89k. Queries are just around the corner and I can’t wait!
Still mapping my goals and focuses for May. I do know the month will include starting to write a new book I have been planning for some time, and which I am fiendishly excited about!
What are your plans for the month?
Last month I shared the first page of my homemade 2014 calendar. This week I bring you the completed March:
Materials this time included paint pens and permanent markers. I’m IN LOVE with Craftsmart’s gold foil!
Looking ahead to April, my month’s goals include but are not limited to:
- Completing Draft 3 of my WIP
- Query research
- Continued French review (units 3 and 4 in my textbook at a minimum)
- My extracurricular: reading up on how to read facial expressions, body language, and items within that vicinity (Liespotting, anyone?)
How about you?