School’s out. Finally. Summer sure took her time getting here, eh? She gimped onto the calendar with the alacrity of a crippled snail. Even so, as every cell of my being opens to the long-lost sun, drinking in a taste of summer, I’m celebrating. Sort of.
Why? Well, have you noticed? Summer is a con artist, spritzing myths into gullible ears like mist in a hothouse.
Examples? After the ninety-miles-an-hour-with-your-hair-on-fire frenetic pace of the school year, summer cons us into thinking we’re in for a “break.” “Slow down,” she coos, “kick back. Rest up. Wind down. After all, it’s summer!”
Warm weather whirlwind?
I don’t know about you, but my summer is usually as jam-packed and crazy as the rest of the year. It’s just a different kind of crazy. Calendar still fill. Planners book up. The only difference seems to be the weather and venue – at home or on the beach, desert, mountain peak, park, library, baseball diamonds or pool – other than the school campus. For a lot of people, particularly families, summer is just another word for “warm weather whirlwind.”
I used to lean into summer with the noblest of intentions: Finish that memoir. Or two or three. Send off that manuscript. Or two. Or three. Or four. Polish a dozen “in progress” works. Draft fifty articles. Submit that book proposal. Or three. Or four. Or five. Crank out 5,000 words a day.
That lasts for maybe a week or two, until summer hits full-throttle and that “have so much time now” illusion evaporates into a moist mirage.
Manageable and bite-sized
Someone suggested a summer goal of setting aside two hours a day to write. Realizing that summer is a charmer, a warm-weather chimera, I just laughed. And poked along at my own pace: devoting twenty minutes a day to write, uninterrupted. It’s not as impressive as two hours, but it’s manageable. Bite-sized. Realistic.
Know what? I’ve found that if I focus on a bite-sized goal and keep at it, I get it. Know what else? Twenty minutes can easily tumble into 40 or 60 or 90 or more.
What bite-sized writing goals have you set for this summer? Tell us in the comments section.