World Class Juggler - Twenty years ago

My Type A personality is creeping out. This October has a lot to offer to me. Whether I can fully do it all is another question. I've been reading ghost stories and a tale of witches to prepare me for it all.

Last Saturday, I was sitting in a church activity center and opened my computer to continue reading about ghost hunting. The writer has a ring that was supposed to be haunted by a vampire. I wondered, what could happen in a church with that sort of information. Being a Baptist, I was taught God was stronger but not mess around with the Boogey Man, just let him be. And here I was reading about him in a church hall.

It made me think of a fellow teacher. She managed an In school suspension classroom. The students did their work. I picked up the romance she was reading and read the most lurid sex romp. Looking at the class, I slowly lowered the book to the desk.

I sat in on two speakers at the Chattahoochee Writers Group in Columbus. The first one was a screenwriter named Ty Manns. He was really good. I have a problem with organization and clarity with my writing and he gave some clear guidelines. If only, I could do what he does.

The second speaker was clearly leading a fan club meeting. The speaker is a well known sci-fi novelist from the area. Hanging on every word were his fans. To me, it was a long hour of redundant talk about his work and other sci fi writers. I read a lot of Ray Bradbury, Robert Heinlein and all of Frank Herbert's books in my twenties and enjoyed them. But I was unfamiliar with the writers and this man's work. I sat crammed in the front row corner. There was no way I could have slipped out politely.

Whether I like it or not, I always learn from what does not go as planned. If I ever speak to a public group, I will never assume they have the same familiarity with a finite set of information. If they don't, they can't relate. Putting it into practice is harder than saying it.

I also reached the point where I need to follow the drummer in front of me. I am constantly trying to learn about the craft of writing. The biggest problem is that each person has their own group of books of fabulous writers to explore. So now I will read what I have and just write what I have started. There are just too many directions. I am picking one. Do all roads lead to Rome?

I guess this is where my organizational problem originates. Just picking one item and ignoring the others is very difficult. Add to that all the balls I am juggling. As you get older you start dropping a few balls. Add to that the new balls people are tossing you. It all goes back to priorities.

So my priorities are going to be aligned once again. But this month I got it all written down. I will do what I got to do first. Then I will exercise. Then I will do any of the extra if I have time. I remember when the only thing I had to do was the extra. I went to school or work. But hey, second shift I was good to go. I could even forego third shift and show up for work or school.

Those were the days my friend. I hope they are still yours. Meanwhile, I got to find that ball I just dropped.




Comments

  1. Good steps to follow, stuff needs to get done and exercise too, all roads eventually lead to the same place.

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    1. Currently, I have a too much paperwork and not writing paperwork that I would rather be doing. My epithet may read, "She never had time to finish a book, but all her papers are organized for inspection by the IRS and Social Security."

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  2. Speaking to people, you have to remember that they likely don't know what you know, and whatever you talk about, it has to relate to them.

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    1. With conferences, the organizers need to be specific about what they want. Then, they need to discuss with the presenter what they be planning to deliver so their program description is true. There was nothing wrong with his program except that it might as well be in Chinese for what I could follow.

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  3. I worked at a state hospital that originally started as a Civil War orphanage and ghost stories were real, and a few times i was really spooked.It had a lot of old buildings, and a lot of people that were mentally challenged.Many spent their entire lives there.

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    1. Luckily, I have never experience a haint. But I feel there could be something there in that I believe the stories of some people.

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  4. My goodness, I hear you! I think the key is to just pick a direction (after intense research), and go. Sitting on the fence for too long is always a mistake. For the first time in my life I am completely dropping balls and not even cognizant of the fact I've done it. I think that's a sign that I've got a little too much on my plate. Trying to clear some of it off. Slowly but surely. Housekeeping means more than just dusting or doing dishes, eh?

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    1. I'm so behind, I will never catch up. And when I do, I doubt it matters.

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  5. Seems like you have a plan to get done that which needs to get done at your neck of the woods. God is greater, of course, than anything else, demons, boogie men, etc, though I do know they exist and have heard stories and have stories to share about them. It is always comforting we just have to call on the name of Jesus and they need to leave. I hope you find that ball :)

    betty

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    1. When I find the ball, I will need to sit down and remember what it was for. lol

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  6. There is a ton of advice out there and a lot of directions to go. You need to pick the best one for you.

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    1. I've learned more from doing. There is just so much out there. Thanks.

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  7. You have quite the writer's eye for details, Ann! If you've the passion to put it to paper - go for it. Choosing which challenge to take might seem difficult sometimes, but isn't it wonderful to have the choice at all? Every so often I run across a ball I've dropped in the past and wonder why I ever thought I needed it in the first place;-)

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    1. To everything there is a season comes to mind. Thanks for the encouragement.

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  8. I have the same problem of picking one thing and then staying focused. It's so hard to do. I like new things, they are entertaining.

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  9. You drew me in with the allusion to juggling. Okay, metaphorical juggling works too. I don't go to many speaking events other than church which I think counts as listening to a speaker. Someone speaking about writing could go either direction of boring or interesting--I guess it depends on the speaker. As for the books, I have so many books about writing, most of which I've not yet read. Everyone has an opinion. Maybe yours or mine is as good as any of them.

    Arlee Bird
    Tossing It Out

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