Homemade Calendar – September

calendar - september 2014-2

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.

Homemade Calendar – May

may 2014 calendar

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?


Homemade Calendar – March

Last month I shared the first page of my homemade 2014 calendar. This week I bring you the completed March:

march 2014 calendar_0001

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:

  1. Completing Draft 3 of my WIP
  2. Query research
  3. Continued French review (units 3 and 4 in my textbook at a minimum)
  4. My extracurricular: reading up on how to read facial expressions, body language, and items within that vicinity (Liespotting, anyone?)

How about you?

Homemade Calendar

Inspired partly by a friend’s homemade calendar and partly by Gretchen Rubin’s The Happiness Project, this year I decided (albeit not until February) to make my own 12 month calendar to set goals and monthly focuses. Goals would be short-term, one-time tasks: write a letter. Read 4 books. Do X errand, memorize Y poem, try Z recipe. Month-long focuses would be either project-related or, drawing from Rubin, something I wanted to devote more time to.

It was these– the extracurricular focuses– that I was really excited about. These were the things that drove me to make this calendar. Mostly, they’re things I’ve been wanting to learn more about or learn to do better forever, and have always told myself I would, but never made the time to. Things that interest me, fascinate me, or would simply be useful to know: how to dream lucidly. Read Latin. Apply better, more professional makeup. Create ciphers. Analyze handwriting. Grow rosemary and saffron. Long have I meant to look up the latest fashion trends, learn all the guitar scales, study body language. Etc. ad infinitum. There is much to be said for letting Interest be your guide, and, in addition to enjoying the activities themselves, I could easily see any of these things finding their way into my fiction.

This is what my first month ended up like:

february 2014_0001

I used soft pastels to mark off the days, coloring each box as I went. This month I may try something else.

The rest of the calendar follows the same general format through December: large chart for days (just right for the stickers I’m imagining for Nanowrimo and other word count jaunts), space on the right for listing goals and focuses, and of course an artistic splash of pictures, relevant or impulsively chosen.

Do you keep monthly goals or focuses? What are you working on this month?

Oh, and one last perk to keeping this style of calendar: Since I knew I wanted to share my completed February (i.e., on my blog), I made sure to complete all the goals I listed first. One of them I’d been putting off, but having that accountability motivated me to wrap it up on the last day of the month!