Tuesday, April 16, 2013

Fetch me my writin' shed

Before I begin this post in earnest, allow me to first say thank you to Jamie over at Being Positive with a Depressive Soul.  Jamie kindly awarded me my second Liebster Blog Award, which I consider a bloggy hug of friendship.  So big thank yous to Jamie.  Now go check out her blog! 
Thank you, Jamie!  You rock.
For past blog awards I have duly answered the 5, 11, 423 personal questions as instructed by the award rules, then passed the torch to the 5, 11, 423 bloggers I most adore.  I'm a rule follower by nature and I like to please.  This time, however, I'm going to be a rebel and humbly accept the award and ignore everything else.  Look at my Latest Distractions for the blogs I consistently read and love.  Surely you no longer care if I prefer AT&T or Verizon, The Black Keys or The White Stripes (neither is the answer to both, in case you're curious), and we can just move on to more interesting things.

I believe I promised to keep you apprised of my progress with Shiny Object School.  (See this post for more info.)  To be perfectly honest, I haven't done much!  This is the self-directed wing of Sarah Yost's program and, if I may be frank, people with ADD don't do so great with self-direction.  That said, I did the first week of work before trailing off and intend to get back on track pronto.  Here's what I needed to do:
  • Brainstorm a project that I'd like to accomplish by writing down a page worth of ideas.
  • Narrow down the list to my top 3-5 ideas.
  • Follow a list of prompts to choose the project I would select for the six week program.
  • Make initial goals, baby steps to get the ball rolling.
If you follow my Pinterest boards because a.) you're bored, b.) you have as rich of a fantasy life as me, or c.) you believe it offers you a window into my brooding soul (in which case you may need to seek the help of a good therapist), you know that I have a board devoted entirely to "That Writing Studio I Want."  This board of chock full of photos of dainty cottages and repurposed sheds, train cars and gypsy caravans.  I want me a writing studio because right now I use the dining room table or the porch swing in nicer weather.  Both are perfectly fine writing spaces, however the reality of such writing spaces is impermanence and distraction.  The dining room table is really a space for homework and family meals.  The porch swing is open to the elements and does not have a working electrical outlet nearby.  I need a space where I can spread out my books and papers, plug in the laptop, and be inspired.  It need not be a big space, nor an expensive space, but like Virginia Woolf minus the suicidal tendencies, I crave a room of my own.  So, this is my Shiny Object project.
To die for, right? (found at Small Garden Love)

When I told my husband that this is what I chose, he immediately went into "we can't afford that" mode.  He's right.  We can't.  But if he keeps saying, "Just publish that best seller already," and expecting that to happen at the dining room table, I think he's sorely mistaken.  Or that's just a weak excuse to have a cozy cottage in my backyard where I charge admission in venti lattes.  What I am proposing isn't crazy.  I want to transform our existing ramshackle garage into a studio/storage space; one half would be my little creativity shack and a wall would divide the space so that we could also store the lawn mower.  I contacted my husband's best friend who is a carpenter and all around knowledgeable guy, who also just happened to take a week-long course on building backyard studios, and asked for advise.  This is how far I have gotten.  He gave me a list of things to consider and do, I became overwhelmed and distracted, and here I am two weeks later having little to show you but my embarrassed face.

Tomorrow is a new day.  I plan to dust off the to-do list and get back in the proverbial saddle.  If any of you lovely writing readers have endeavored to build a backyard studio, would you be willing to share advice?  Or, if you are not a writer or a contractor, but know of a good local (local is key, people) contractor who is fair, available (I know, Stephanie, your man rocks, but he also has a full-time gig.), and willing to be paid in venti lattes, please send me a message.

Lastly, some housekeeping:
1. Go follow my friend Kate's blog over at Nested.  She is giving away fun prizes!
2. Go check out my friend Anna's blog over at The Silent Isle.  She is looking for guest posts.
3. Check back for some exciting news that I will be sharing. That is all I'm going to say. 
4. If you have been following me for a while you know that when I hit a certain number of readers, I share an embarrassing drawing that I created as an anguished fan-girl teenager.  I'm running low on these pictures, so I would like to propose that when I reach 100 followers, I will draw a new picture of an 80s band or musician, draw a name from my hatful of followers, and send a signed copy to you!  How's that for incentive?  What do you need to do?  Leave me a comment with the band or musician name you would like me to draw!  I already have a request for Aimee Mann (who I lurve) and will resort to drawing her if I don't receive other requests.

Let the submissions begin!


  1. You need to post this on the Louisville TimeBank website. Might just find some creative folks ready to help you out!

    1. Hey there Beth. That's a great idea, but I'm terrible at self-promotion and asking for favors. I know, that's ridiculous, but it's true. If you know of a TimeBanker who might consider a project of this nature, please do tell! I need to start accruing hours again.

  2. I am a wizbang with a paintbrush, if that's helpful and also once tiled a backsplash with my dad. I'm pretty handy. That said, I am not a contractor and will therefore only really be of use once the major construction is done. But that's something, right?

    Thank you for the nomination, as always, mein liebling. See what happens when you become my friend? I type/whisper German endearments to you in a totally non-creepy way.

  3. Thank you for the offer. Let me get past the first week of to-dos and I'll keep you in mind.

    Did you hear the This American Life about whispering? Listen to it now! It is so awesome. It will give new meaning to whisper/typing (in German or any language).

  4. I always drool over those adorable little writing sheds and want one. I wannnnnnnnnt one. I have a lovely office, I don't know why I feel like that's not enough. But a cute little get-away is just so enticing and I'm quite sure the muse would thrive in that kind of atmosphere and I would write like a TRUE writer. Whenever I suggest one to the spousal unit, he reminds me that we live very cold temps, even sometimes in summer, and that it would require a heating source. Well of course it would!

    1. Well HVAC is rather obvious, right? Tell your spouse that you'd settle for a space heater and a shawl. This needs to happen for both of us.

  5. I would follow you twice if I could, just to see that drawing... Adam Ant anyone?

    Congrats on another well deserved award :)

    ¸.·´¸.·*´¨) ¸.·*¨)
    (¸.·´ (¸.·`¤... Jennifer
    Jenn's Random Scraps

    1. Thank you, Jenn. I must apologize for now just following your blog! I have two Jenns who follow me and thought you were one person, who I followed months ago!

      Adam Ant is an intriguing suggestion. It's on the list.

  6. i'm proud of your effort so far. i have been trying to get ready for the farmer's markets this summer and i keep putting it off. i have things to make, things to organize, things to plan.... when people ask me if i'm ready for the markets, i smile and say "just about". its horrible.

    and, i have a creative space and i never create there. i organize and store things there but when it comes to creating i sit on the cross-legged on the coach with a huge wooden board for a table.

    will all the followers names be in the hat or just the new ones because i would really like to win the prize.
    keep taking baby steps
    ps is the big news your pregnant??

    1. It's good to know that I'm in fine company, Bev. What I would give to hang with you at the farmer's market. We'd gossip about the old ladies and eat fresh fruit and make crafts and recall our favorite eps of Call the Midwives (first season because season two isn't on Netflix yet).

      I fear that if I did have the creative space I'd squander it. I have an attic room that has turned into a major junk hole. In defense, I hate that room.

      All followers will be in the hat. Don't you worry.

      Baby steps are the only steps I know how to take!

      PS: Hell no!

  7. Oh good GOd not Aimee Mann...actually Aimee Mann is cool. I love your backyard/garage halved studio idea! My little piece of literary triumph has happened while lying on my stomach anywhere I can hook up a laptop while recovering from a rather bad health year. I have taken to writing Dr. Suesisms about it...I can write it on a bed, I can write it in my head, with an IV in my arm, In the bathroom does no harm....Yeah, Im no poet. BTW I would like Johnny Cash.

    1. I'm sorry you've had a rough year, Zoe. I've had home health with IVs before (for Crohn's) and it's not fun. I do like your Seussisms and think you could publish a collection of them. Seriously! Google Dr. Seuss parodies and see if anything like it exists. If not, go for it!

      Johnny Cash, not exactly an 80s figure, but still kicking around in the 80s. And since I'm a fan of his - there is something crazy hot about Johnny Cash - I'm putting him on the list.

    2. Yeah, I figured he wasnt very 80s but he may have been close to 80 by that time....LOL. Sisters under the skin? Nonhodgkins and colon CA yuck. No colon now but getting better.Thanks for the kind words.

    3. How awful. I'm glad you're recovering.

  8. Congrats on the award, Amy! (And might I ask what a Liebster Award means?) And if you ever do build that creativity shack and find a squatter there, don't shoot. It's me.

  9. Congrats on the award, Amy! (And might I inquire what a Liebster Award means?) And if you ever manage to build your creativity shack and find a squatter there, don't shoot. It's me.

    1. I believe liebster means loved one or dearest in German. Here's the idea behind the award (although I'm certain I nominated you for one in the past): The Liebster award is given to up and coming bloggers to encourage them to continue their work. What is a Liebster? The meaning: Liebster is German and means sweetest, kindest, nicest, dearest, beloved, lovely, kind, pleasant, valued, cute, endearing, and welcome.


      Here are the rules for receiving this award:

      1. Thank the blog that has given you the award.
      2. Answer the questions that the tagger set for you.
      3. Choose 11 people and link them in your post.
      4. Create 11 questions for the people you’ve tagged to answer.
      5. Go to their page and tell them.

      See, I really got lazy.

      Squat away in the creativity shack. There will always be room for my writing cohorts. I'll brew us a nice spot of tea.

  10. Congrats on your award. It is always nice to be recognized. I have two to respond to and haven't the time to address them and I feel bad! I've been so overwhelmed lately, though, that I haven't even had time to blog, so everything else waits. Oh, and please draw me Steven Tyler ;0)

    1. Thanks, Cindy. I can't keep up with blog reading, let alone blog writing, so no need to apologize. I think I need to schedule it into my week so it happens but doesn't feel like I'm wasting time in front of the computer checking Facebook.

      Got you down for the woman-man with the big lips. How did that man create Liv Tyler?

  11. Love this project idea! It's pretty meaty. I'll be watching and cheering you on!

    1. Thank you for the celebrity endorsement!

      Yeah, it's a little overwhelming, but then again, I get overwhelmed choosing a new conditioner.

      Had one friend over to look at the space yesterday. He thinks it's do-able on the cheap. Friend number two comes on Friday. Then I need to listen week two of your course so I can plot my next move.

      Thank you for helping me break my life down into bite-sized pieces.


Comments for me? Thanks a bunch!