Future Thoughts

Playing It Over And Over In My Mind…

This goes along with the obnoxious post that I posted here yesterday.

I mentioned that Kris and I tend to talk about our future a lot. I have no idea what gets us thinking about it, but I guess it’s just the feeling of “wondering.” I haven’t really talked to her in a little while about it, but I have been thinking about it myself lately. I also said that yesterday I was talking to my cat, Hunter about it. He meowed back at me…if only I knew what he was saying.

I said that I had always had a plan. I wanted to be a teacher. Then I wanted to be a writer and a teacher. Well, I still have those plans. I’m working towards those goals. I went to school for teaching and I am a teacher’s assistant at a preschool. I just mailed my lead teacher application the other day. I will be going to school for English starting this Fall and I also have a few novels I have written and completed. I just need to seriously edit them.

But then I really got to thinking and even though I practically wanted to be a teacher my whole life, the other major thing I’ve always wanted to be was a mom.

I babysit my cousins a lot and I babysit for another family a lot. I need mom hours at work and I can’t get them now. But when I’m a director of a preschool and a writer at the same time, how am I going to find time to spend with my kids?

Yes, I know. I turn 20 in about a month, so why am I thinking about what I’m going to do with my kids now? But I feel as though I need a plan.

The other day I was home alone. I woke up early, made a cup of coffee, and sat down at my desk to write. I had my turtle, Raph out of her tank. She was getting into all sorts of messes which distracted me from writing (she likes to go into small nooks and crannies, but we’re in the basement…you have no idea how many spiders are in those small nooks and crannies!).

Raph

I also have my cat, Hunter down there to babysit her. He likes to watch her and lately when he starts going somewhere she isn’t supposed to (for example, the laundry room) he begins to meow and howl obnoxiously loud until he has my undivided attention. The best part is that I don’t have to pay him.

Hunter

Then there’s my pip-squeak of a dog, Chip. Sometimes she sits on my lap while I write and other times she sits on the stairs and barks. God only knows why.

Chip

So I was thinking to myself that I would absolutely love to have that every day. Wake up early, get the kids off to school, get the husband off to work, then it’s just me, the animals (fish is going to get thrown into the mix soon), and my writing. Of course, I guess I would occasionally clean the house, too.

But when I thought of this ideal lifestyle, I realized that no where in there involves teaching. I want to own a preschool. How can I stay home all day writing with my pets while my kids are at school then hang out with my kids, do homework with them, and cook dinner when I’m running my own preschool? This is problematic.

Then I thought maybe I could hold off the directing until my kids are a little older and I can just teach in the mean time. Then again, I only turn 20 next month…when am I having kids? Not for a while, I know that much. So why am I thinking about this so much? I have no idea.

All I know is that there are so many things I want to be doing and there is just not enough time. Writing is the number one priority and I want to have kids and I want to teach. How am I supposed to fit everything together to work perfectly like puzzles pieces meant for the same picture? And I know that there are going to be so many other things that I’m going to want to do, as well. It really sucks not knowing what’s going to happen in the future. I wish I could plan everything out, but I can’t.

Thoughts On Life

Warning, This Is A Really Long Post…

Kris and I tend to have a lot of conversations about our future. For some strange reason, I was beginning to think about again this morning. Kris was home with me, but she was in the shower so I didn’t really have anyone to talk to about it. Except for Hunter.

Yes, he is sitting in a drawer. This pic was taken a while ago, though.
Yes, he is sitting in a drawer. This pic was taken a while ago, though.

He seemed to agree with me on half of the things I said, too. Well…he meowed a lot, anyway. But together, in the half hour Kris was in the shower, he and I took a long, hard look at life.

I was always the type of person to have a plan.  I always stuck to that plan no matter what and it was very hard for someone or something to change my mind.

When I was in first grade, I was six-years-old,  I loved my teacher a lot. Her name was Mrs. McCarthy. I have two memories from that class: one was that she had a beanie baby named Tiny. Every Friday one kid in the class was chosen to take it home for the weekend. Memory number two is that I remember telling her, “I’m going to be a first grade teacher just like you.” I kept half of that promise. I do want to be a teacher and have wanted to be a teacher ever since.

When I was in fifth grade, I was ten, my sister found the FanFiction website. I wasn’t really all that interested in it, but I wanted to copy her because I was an annoying little sister. I created a story for Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles because that was my obsession at the time. The writing sucked, to be blunt. My spelling was terrible, I had no idea what grammar was, and for the most part there was no plot. I just threw a little girl into the turtles’ laps and based her off of me. As I got older, I took the story down and re-vamped it. It was popular and I continued on. I found the sister site, FictionPress, which is all original stuff. I posted a few things on there, came up with millions of novel ideas, and thought to myself, “Why post these on the internet when I could get them published?” That was when I got my start at writing.

But I still wanted to be a teacher. How was I to write and be a teacher at the same time? Mind you, at this point in time I thought authors made millions of dollars by just selling one book. I didn’t realize how difficult it truly is. But I thought writing was going to be so much work (which it is), so how was I to write full time all day every day and still be able to teach first grade?

“I’ll be an English teacher!” I finally came to a conclusion. I never really thought about what grade I wanted to teach, but I was gonna go with it for the time being. I love Spanish, too. There was some point in my life where I kept flip-flopping back and forth between being an English teacher and a Spanish teacher.

Then I got to seventh grade, I was 12. My aunt suddenly passed away from a brain aneurysm. She and the rest of my family were over for my birthday, seeming completely fine, and two days later she was gone. She left behind Jackie and Kat (who were 3 and 1 at the time) and my Uncle behind. Two weeks later we had to put my dog Casey down due to seizures. This was around the time Hunter came into the picture (he was a stray), but that’s another story for another time.

Most of my writing during that time was sad and gloomy. Most of the things I wrote on FanFiction was in the humor section and I got a lot of reviews with people telling me that my work was so funny that they printed it out to share with their friends and such like that. But when she left behind her daughters, there was no one else to watch them while my Uncle was at work, so we took them in. I was the youngest of three and then suddenly a middle child of five. It was the biggest change of my life and it’s not something I would wish upon anybody.

I love my cousins to death and I am glad we did what we did to help them and my Uncle out, but when you’re 12 it’s tough to see just how good of a deed you’re really doing. But ever since then, I was done with change. I didn’t care if it was good or bad, I didn’t need anymore surprises in my life.

But people tell you that when you get to high school, things change. Your friends, even yourself, changes. “That will never!” I declared. I had the best group of friends in the world. Alyssa, Mary, Christina, and Kerri. I had known Christina and Kerri since elementary school and Alyssa and Mary came into the picture in middle school, sixth grade.

But at the beginning of ninth grade, high school…things changed. Just like people told me they would. Mary moved to another town so she went to a different high school. Alyssa went to a vocational school. Only Christina, Kerri, and I were at school together, but while I had a few classes with Kerri, I never saw Christina around. I kept in touch with Alyssa and kept in touch with Mary through Alyssa. But as each day passed, we talked less and less. Now we get in contact with each other once every few months and never hang out anymore.

Junior year was the bulk of when everything happened. I had just turned 16 and while everyone else was learning how to drive, I said no thank you. I wasn’t ready for it and I wasn’t going to be for a very long time. Kerri changed drastically that year to the point that I haven’t spoken to her since. And I changed, as well. I knew what I wanted to do with my life, but I was straying from the path that I had been on so for so.

Long story short, after Christmas break, I did not go back to high school. I refused to go. My teachers were baffled, my parents didn’t know what to do, and I had no idea what had come over me. I hated the kids in my class, none of my teachers seemed to believe in me, and I was realizing that Kerri didn’t believe in me, either. We got in a huge fight because when she asked me what was going on with me, I told her I didn’t know because I truly didn’t know. She got angry at me thinking I was keeping something from her. That was the end of our friendship.

For the second half of my junior year I stayed home all day and went in after school to be tutored for a while to make sure I finished my junior year. I went into therapy where I was diagnosed with general anxiety disorder and had to be put on medication. I only had two teachers supporting me and the rest thought it was because I just needed to be in lower classes. I was put in the low classes all my life when I got A’s and B’s. I had to fight to get into the higher classes and now they were putting me down again. I had it with teachers. I had it with school. I was ready to drop out and not bother going to college.

My therapist found this “dual enrollment” program at a local community college. I was able to finish my high school diploma there and the courses would also count towards my degree. I went with it. And I’m glad I did. I not have my Associate’s degree in early childhood education. I’m starting my Bachelor’s in the Fall for English.

I hate change. I always hated it thinking I would never get through, but my entire life has changed in a million different directions and each time I adapted. I went from wanting to be a teacher, to an English teacher, to possibly a Spanish teacher, to finally deciding on being a preschool teacher (working towards owning my own preschool and being director) ,all while being a writer. I went from a group of four friends to just the one (Christina and I chat ever day). I went from being an almost high school drop-out to being a college graduate. And I have plans to get my Bachelor’s in English, Master’s in Business, and go back for a certificate in Special Ed. I went from being the youngest child to being one of the oldest.

I guess what I’m trying to say is that…I’m ready for anything else that life throws at me. I have a lot more schooling to get done and I have a ton of books to get published. Who knows what’s going to happen?

July Camp: Day Seven

Still Behind…

 

Well, that’s a lie. I’m not behind on Camp NaNo. Today we’re supposed to be at 11,296 or something random like that. I’m past that number. But when it comes to my goal, I should have been at 17,500. I got to 15,110 words. I wrote 5,044 words today. That’s pretty good, if I do say so myself.

I’m exactly one day behind. Which means tomorrow I’m going to be two days behind. In order to catch up I have to write about 5,000 words tomorrow. I don’t think that will be too much of a problem because I write for an hour every morning. I have to babysit until one, but after that the rest of the day is mine. I’m hoping to get another 5k in.

Today is Sunday which means I had to work a little bit on my FanFiction today. I didn’t feel like it, but I did work on it for an hour. It doesn’t look like I did too much…I typed up the stats that goes before the prologue. It’s six pages long, it took a while. If you read Warriors by Erin Hunter, then you’ll understand that the stats are a list of the clans and characters and such.

Anyway, that’s all I have to say for today. I got a lot done and now I am going to go hang out in my bedroom before Kris gets home (we share a room).

This was a boring post. Thank you for allowing me to waste these past five minutes of your life that you will never get back. 😀

July Camp: Day Five

Almost One Week Down…

 

Raph's Note

 

I went away for the Fourth of July with my boyfriend and his family. This meant I had to leave poor Raph behind. Of course, I was only gone for one full day. However, Kris took good care of her. She was at work when I came home and when I went down to the basement to say hi to Raph, I found this note. It says:

“Hi Mom! I drove Kris CRAZY this morning when she was trying to write while I was out. You would have been proud! Despite that, she gave me some AWESOME cucumbers and lettuce. She did not, however, change my pool water. You should get on that. I’m sure you had fun in NH, but I bet you missed me! Love, Raphie.”

Now, as you all know, Raph is a turtle, not a dog or a cat. When I first got her, I did a lot of research on turtles. Everything said turtles have no memory at all. They only remember who feeds them and what hurts them. That’s it. Other than that, they don’t really “feel” anything else.

I was surprised when I went down to take her out because as soon as she saw me, she seemed to get really excited. She tried walking through the glass wall of her tank. She always does that when she sees me because she knows when I come down stairs it either means she’s getting food or she gets to come out of her tank for a bit. So I thought nothing of it. But when I took her out, she kept curling up by my foot. I kept moving her away so she could get some exercise, but she kept coming back. Finally, I picked her up and put her on my lap while I wrote. She actually stayed there. I was surprised because she hates sitting on my lap. I think she hates it because it’s not a flat surface and, since we were sitting on my desk chair, it was high up.

So Raph isn’t a cat or a dog, but I think there is some sort of bond between the two of us with all the interaction I give her. So I don’t really believe all those people on Google who said turtles don’t feel anything. I think she noticed that I was gone. Or maybe I’m just over-thinking this? Oh, well. I’m going to pretend that she missed me. 🙂

Anyway, I wrote while she sat upon my lap. I was right on par with the NaNo count, but my word count…I was behind. By a lot. NaNo is 1,613 words a day, I’m trying to get 2,500 words a day. Because I missed yesterday (and I haven’t been writing 2,500 words a day…) I needed to write about 7,000 words in order to catch up to my own goal. According to my goal, I should be at 12,500. I wrote as much as I could before my cousins came over (but I kept getting distracted…) I wrote a total of 2,027 words leaving my Camp count at 7,630. Not bad.

I’ve been trying to write for at least one hour every single day. I had about three hours to write and even though I kept getting distracted, I did in fact write for a full hour…I think. I’m pretty sure. I don’t see how I couldn’t have written for at least one full hour.

Anyway, tomorrow my goal is supposed to be 15,000. Do we think I can catch up? Eh, we’ll see.

July Camp: Day One

Yay for Camp!!!

 

I have a lot to talk about today, so listen up:

1. My sister Kris and I decided to come up with some sort of schedule. It was actually her idea, but I thought of the idea a while ago (er, years ago). Of course, that was all mine was–an idea. I never even tried it for one day. But yesterday she came up to me and told me to help her stick with something. She showed me a “to do” list of hers. On that she stated she wanted to set a daily goal (words, pages, time, etc.) and do it every day. Monday through Saturday would be spent working on originals and Sunday would be FanFiction days. When I came up with this, I decided I was going to do FanFiction on Saturday and Sunday and originals would be Monday through Friday. I mentioned that to her and I don’t know if she’s going to do her way or my way, but either way we’re going to do it together. Since she asked me to help her make sure she completes this to do list, I decided that I’m going to do it, as well.

Yesterday, which was Sunday, we went to Barnes and Noble for our weekly writing session. I ended up working on my FanFiction because, well it was Sunday, a weekend day. For writing in a notebook, I got a whole lot done. Today is Monday (and the first day of Camp NaNoWriMo) so I worked on original. But since Camp started, I started something new instead of editing Hunter or Diary of a Lover or anything like that. I’m writing Cybertra. I’ll post the summary on here by the end of the month.

Anyway, I decided that I was going to write for at least one hour every day. The morning is really the only reliable time I have just to myself. So I decided that every day (all seven days of the week) I’m going to write from 7 a.m. to 8 a.m. That started today. And man do I wish that I started something like this a long time ago! I had the most productive day! I woke up at 6:30, took a shower, made an iced coffee, and wrote while I had Raph getting her daily exercise and I got my morning caffeine dose. My timer went off on my iPod after an hour, I took Chip for a walk, then I got myself ready to go out. I had to babysit toady from 9 to 3. It was great. Not to mention that by 8, I was wide awake, felt refreshed, and ready to take on the day! If this was any other normal day, I would have woken up around seven, realized I needed to take a shower, but say “eh, I’ll do it tonight,” then count down until I had to leave the house all while moping around in my bed watching TV…I’m really not that lazy, but sometimes….

Right.

2. As stated, today was the first day of Camp NaNo. I’m going away this week (leaving Wednesday afternoon and coming back Friday afternoon). So I can write on Wednesday and Friday, but I’ll miss Thursday. One day isn’t bad. But I am going away again the last week of July. The 20th to the 27th. I’m going to bring a couple of notebooks with me and work on FanFiction that week. Yes, I will be breaking my schedule, but I can’t bring my laptop. So I decided that I want to try to finish Camp before I leave. That gives me 20 days instead of 31. Of course, I’ll still have a couple days when I get back, but still.

This means I should write 2,500 words a day instead of the usual 1,613. I wrote 1,616 today. At least I met the standard quota. If I didn’t have to babysit today, I probably would have written a lot more. I have to babysit again tomorrow (double time…9-3 with one family and then 4-7 with another family). Wednesday I’m babysitting, then leaving. Thursday I’ll be gone. Friday I can write when I get home. All next week I’m babysitting 9-1. It’ll be tough, but I think I can make it work. I can at least be able to make it to 50k by the end of the month, if not by the time I go on vacation. I will do it!

3. My novel is weird. Seriously. I had a completely different vision in my mind for Cybertra and it…well, it took an unexpected turn. Don’t get me wrong, I love where it ended up going, but I was shocked…and was laughing. A lot. I can’t post the summary yet, so you’re going to get lost when I tell you this, but…in the novel, the father builds robots to help people in need. Elderly people, police force, etc. He makes 100 robots at a time and when they all get shipped to a big company that sells them places, he makes a new batch of 100 robots. But, in the prologue, his daughter is six and wants to keep one. All the robots look exactly the same on the outside. The only way to tell them apart is by their personalities. And…well, one of them, the one they end up keeping, has a very different personality. He wasn’t supposed to be this animated. He was supposed to act more…robot-like, I guess you could say. So I can’t give you a summary, but here’s a small excerpt from the prologue:

 “No, no, no! You must hold your pinky up. Haven’t your mother taught you any manners?” a small little girl wearing a pink, frilly dress with a sparkling tiara on top of her head, held up a small plastic tea cup. Her pinky was in the air and she tried to speak in a grown-up, mature tone.

            “I have not had time to learn manners. My apologizes,”

            The man poked his head through a door in the crack of where the young girl and her guest played on the floor of her bedroom. He opened the door a little more to see her smiling and laughing.

            “Well, it’s a good thing you came here, then.” She giggled.

            “Hannah?” he opened the door all the way.

            She froze. Her eyes grew wide as she shifted them back and forth between both of the gentlemen in her room. Finally, she leaned forward and whispered something.

            “Hannah,” the man sighed. He knew exactly what she was saying to her robot friend.

            “Oh, right! The inspection!” the android jumped off of the floor. “Excuse me, Mr. Noel! I must go see Mr. Noel! I am late…I am very late!” he brushed right by the gentleman and disappeared down the hallway going to the basement.

            Mr. Noel shook his head. He lifted his clipboard and muttered to himself. “Fix attention span on number four…”

Leo is what Hannah names him. He wasn’t really supposed to have a name, either. Oh, well.

Happy camping, everyone! 🙂