The Verdict | Creativity Workshop Goals, Week 1

10 May

Excuse me for two seconds while I chase down my brain.  It’s running in six different directions at the moment — more like gleeful skipping than running, if I’m being honest — and where I need it is right here. In this chair.  At the keyboard, thinking.

If you’re new around here, or if you’re old and you forgot, I am a sucker for Mondays.  Fresh starts get me all revved up, ready to stomp all over anything that gets in my way.  Goals?  Watch out.  I’m ready to tackle you.  All of you.  All at once.

That’s where I am this morning, and it’s a little bit of a struggle to do one thing at a time.  To sit here, to focus, to do one thing well before flitting off to another shiny goal.  This is especially difficult because I’m so ready to start on my actual Creativity Workshop project, due to the numerous this-is-how-my-goals-are-going posts I read this morning.  Now it’s my turn to write one of those, before I proceed.

Last week, I wrote two sets of goals:

An all-encompassing set

and

A way-more-specific set

Since the way-more-specific set won’t get underway until today, I’m going to measure last week’s progress against the first set.  (In case you need a refresher for details, click the link, or just recall my adorable cat posing, top-model-like, inside his box of choice.  He’s smiling with his eyes, and Tyra Banks would be proud.)

The Goals & The Verdicts

Boxbuster Goal #1: Work on my ability to switch gears; make quality progress on two projects in the same week.

The Verdict: Even though we didn’t start writing our short stories last week, the Creativity Workshop itself took up a bit of time.  Crafting goals and posting about them was a project in and of itself.  I did work on my novel last week, though not as often as I intended to.  When I worked on it, I made some quality progress (meaning, I feel proud of the way I spent my time when I sat down to work, and what I ended up with is light years better than what I began with).  Therefore: goal achieved, since concrete progress was made on two different projects.

Boxbuster Goal #2: Make a tighter schedule and stick to it.

The Verdict: Um.  Yeah.  About this one…I succeeded 50%, and I bet it’s not too hard to guess which 50% was the winner.  In light of Goal #1, I’m glad to say I at least got a lot of great stuff done.  On the other hand, had I followed the schedule I created, I would have been even more productive.  So far, for today, I’m on track as planned.

Boxbuster Goal #3: Learn how to write them and turn out some good ones.

The Verdict: This one’s not quite in motion yet, since we’re just now starting on our actual projects.  Ideally, I would have read up on short stories last week in preparation.  I didn’t, so I guess we’ll call this one a fail.

Boxbuster Goal #4: Write interesting things, from fresh ideas, that mean something.

The Verdict: This goal, I’m excited to say, I’m gonna claim as a 100% victory.  Part of coming up with our specific goals, for me, entailed a scribbly page of brainstorming.  I actively made a point to look for ideas around me, I took notes as they came to me, and then I pieced them together.  I’ve got some ideas in motion, and what’s more, I’m super excited about these ideas, ready to dive in (hence the gleeful-brain-skipping I mentioned earlier…).  Training my brain to look for fresh ideas with meaning = victory.

Boxbuster #5: The first four goals were pretty all-encompassing, so I’d better include some specific goals that pertain to the writing itself.

The Verdict: This goes hand-in-hand with the fourth goal.  In my outline of this goal in its post, the specifics I came up with were: female protagonist, write ideas inspired by song lyrics, put a fresh twist on a cliche, write something controversial, and write something inspired by my experiences in Shanghai.  Of these, I have definite plans to write around the first three ideas.  I haven’t outlined anything specifically controversial, though I expect I will work it in there somewhere.  Same goes with Shanghai — the idea is in the back of my mind, but I’m not sure where I want to use it yet.  Overall, I’m going to call this a success.

Sweet.  Not bad, not perfect — a good start, I think.

Before I head off to productivity land, I just wanted to let you know that the (high school one act) play my mom directed placed third in the state!  They were incredible. Her star actress — whose name, appropriately, is actually Star — won the award for Best Actress, and a couple of their other actors also won medals for their performances.

We also ate yummy food, stayed up way too late, and now I want to move to Austin, where there are lakes and trees and hills and quirky restaurants and way less ugly concrete than where we currently live.  If we can’t move to New Zealand, I guess Austin is a good second choice.

The end.  (Eloquent way to end, and totally not abrupt.  Right?  Riiiight.)

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11 Responses to “The Verdict | Creativity Workshop Goals, Week 1”

  1. Natasha Monday / 10 May 10 at 12:04 pm #

    I love goal #4, and I’m psyched by this CW and how I’m already finding that this would be my overarching goal for the whole she-bang, if I were going to re-do my goals (which I’m not, at least not formally). I definitely have fresh ideas and I gotta say this workshop group is challenging me with interesting things. And THAT in itself means something.

  2. Linda Cassidy Lewis Monday / 10 May 10 at 12:28 pm #

    Could you please figure out a way to bottle your energy, so I can buy a crate full? I have no doubt you will nail every week of this workshop, Kayla.

  3. AuroraLee Monday / 10 May 10 at 12:31 pm #

    Definitely sounds like the week was a success for you! It’s great to have goals to work toward that aren’t directly related to the specific stories. Good job!

  4. Megs - Scattered Bits Monday / 10 May 10 at 12:41 pm #

    Whoohoo for the play—and your goals!

    Maybe you didn’t quote start off perfect, but for a start, seemed pretty good to me. Changing the habits of years is not easy nor instantaneous, and the progress you’ve made in a single week is amazing. (makes me wonder if I could have fit this in, before a quick glance at my schedule goes…um…no.) May you have a gloriously productive Monday!

  5. Melissa Monday / 10 May 10 at 1:29 pm #

    Congrats to your mom & school!!

    I adore Austin during brief visits. The drivers and offbeat traffic times and ridiculous roadway construction downtown make me hate it after three days. I think senility is a-coming.

  6. darksculptures Monday / 10 May 10 at 2:45 pm #

    I’m just sitting here nodding along with what Natasha and Linda both said. Wow! The creative energy in this group. Every time I click I think to myself – what a great idea, man is that cool or what, I never thought of doing it that way.

    I would have paid for this much inspiration!

  7. Merrilee Monday / 10 May 10 at 4:53 pm #

    Go Kayla’s Mum!

    You’ve done really well Kayla, and as Megs said, changing the habit of years is not easy! I know I’m struggling myself to kick some of these bad habits.

  8. Eliza Monday / 10 May 10 at 6:15 pm #

    Argh- you’ve inspired me, too! I spent some time in England, and your mention of Shanghai (link- far away trips) started the wheels tumbling.
    And congrats to your mom! So exciting!

  9. mew Monday / 10 May 10 at 8:22 pm #

    Totally not abrupt! ;)

    I’m feeling on fire to write my stories, too. Isn’t it wonderful? And I wouldn’t call anything you did or did not do a “fail” yet. We were just in prep week so far; no need to be so tough on yourself. Sounds to me like you did very well.

  10. Chibi Monday / 10 May 10 at 9:56 pm #

    I think you’re doing pretty well. I rarely have a week where I accomplish ALL of my goals, so in my opinion you’re not doing too badly. Besides, last week was kind of an odd week… I think it’s because it was the first week of the workshop. Hopefully things will begin to settle down a bit as we head into the working territory. Good luck with getting your mind reigned in, heh.

  11. Kerryn Tuesday / 11 May 10 at 7:38 am #

    Great progress and by us all reviewing our progress each week we’re sure to improve!

    And you have to move to New Zealand! Wellington, in particular, I’ll be back living there in 2-3 years. Ah… home, even if it’s almost winter there now.

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