Thursday, February 18, 2010


I am a creature of routines. I like my day to go a certain way; this is the time for this, this is the time for that. I believe I became a routine worshiper after the arrival of my first child and routines were the only way to force some sense of order on that rather chaotic situation. To this day, my kids are used to routines. They know certain things happen at certain times. Homework. Meals. Bed. I worked my writing into my daily routine years ago.

But then came...

The Olympics.

My routines have gone into the dumper.

I'm still writing, but I'm writing at odd times. I'm spending huge amounts of time in front of the television. I'm outside, walking around in the magic. This whole event is only 17 days long - how bad can it be?

I've got a deadline in 2 weeks, that's how bad it can be.

We're taught as writers to put our characters in unfamiliar or uncomfortable situations. No one would read a book about daily life and all its humdrumery. (I know that's not a word - but it should be) Actually, yes they would. Erma Bombeck did a rather nice job of it. I digress...

I have a character who is a creature of routines and when events throw his routines out of whack he's flummoxed. But this change forces him to think outside the box and to view other characters from angles he'd never considered. It makes him grow.

I'll meet my deadline. I'll watch the Olympics. I'll find a new routine - and maybe grow a little.


  1. Yeah! Now that's the attitude! Your last sentence sums it up. You'll enjoy the Olympics and you will meet your deadline. You'll have to step out of you routine comfort zone, but you'll do it, and you'll grow from it!

  2. You may lose a little sleep, but you can make that up on Day 18. Go for the Gold!

  3. Crystal; Well, that's the plan. Growth is good - just ask the weeds in my garden!

    Carol; I'm hoping my writing will be golden.

  4. Love that, "growth is good, just ask the weeds in my garden." Life often throws curves, like the Olympics. good to know how to sway with them.
    You'll be fine, I just know it.

  5. Elspeth - I love that attitude, too - "Growth is good." I'll have to really internalize that one. Funny you would mention routines; I really like them, too. There are certain days I set aside for doing certain things, and there are certain times of the say when I do certain things. I've had to do a lot of adjusting, though, as I've had to incorporate more and more in my life. And some days, it doesn't pay anyway to have a routine....Things go better sometimes when one's not that restricted.

  6. Karen; I guess if life was just one straight road it would be rather dull.

    Margot; I'm just not that good at 'going with the flow' - I'm fond of my structure. On the other hand, I've always been involved in some sort of creative pursuit. I'm an enigma.

  7. Good post. Routines, while comforting and even helpful in being productive, can - if adhered to for too long and too strictly, empede growth. But it sounds like your figured that one out already.

    Marvin D Wilson

  8. I'm a sure it's a bit like being back in school. Goofing off (watching the Olympics) and still having to get your assignments in on time. You go girl!

  9. Enjoy the Olympics! I know won't have any problem with that deadline. Have fun!


  10. I like "humdrummery" - I'll have to borrow that!

    I agree with Elizabeth - you won't have any troubles - maybe not much sleep either - but you'll make it :) Have fun!

  11. I've switched so I'm doing my blog crawl and blog writing in the evening on my laptop in front of the TV -- of course, since we're moving in less than 2 weeks, and I have 2 conferences to prepare for, I need to make sure I get my work done. And in a couple of days, the 'real' tv sets will be gone, and hubby and I will have to "discuss" who gets to watch what and when on his small office set.

  12. Old SIlly; Let's hope I've figured it out; just need a little more self-discipline!

    Alan; It IS like being back in school! Thanks for the encouragement.

    Elizabeth; It's a fun plot, so it is fun to write. I WILL meet the deadline.

    Jemi; Let's hope you and Elizabeth are right. I like humdrumery too.

    Terry; There's a good idea - and yes,thank heaven for laptops.

  13. Sounds like you already have a new routine planned. You'll accomplish everything that needs to be done on time and still have a chance to enjoy the Olympics. It's not something you get to enjoy every year in your own backyard (so to speak) so don't miss out.

  14. My mother is a stickler for routine too (my day is regimented too, but more out of necessity than because I want it that way), but there are times when the routine goes flying out of the window because something else is far too important.

    The Olympics in your backyard? If that is not reason enough to bunk routine, nothing is.

  15. Mason; It's so wonderful that they're here. Flags everywhere and the streets are a sea of people wearing red and white.

    Rayna; I know! The Olympics happening where I live is a once in a lifetime event. I hope you're getting to see some of them; and see where I live!

  16. Man, I think I need to watch the Olympics- I'm feeling out of the loop!

    I, too, am a creature of routines. I get miffed if things go out of order, but sometimes controlled chaos is okay. But only sometimes.

  17. I'm kind of allergic to routine on one hand - on the other hand I find them so comforting - so I tend to swing back and forth between whimsy wantoness and rigid rulebound.
    I would be out in the city soaking it all up if I were you - you'll meet your deadline - or not but it will still be OK...

  18. I need routines, but I don't really like them. See, I want to be the spontaneous, fun, unpredictable type. "Oh, that Jack!" people should say. But they don't, because I end up needing my routine (safety/predictable) more than spontaneity (fun/chaotic). It's a never-ending tug of war.

    Too bad you're not writing about the Olympics, because then you'd be doing "research."


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