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Monday, 18 January 2010

Finding What Works

Ever since I had my first child, my weight has climbed. There have been the odd times when I lose a few pounds, but nothing I tried ever worked long term. Most of the time I give up far too easily and end up heavier than ever. As I watched the number grow, I found myself more worried about my health and even worse, I found my confidence shrinking. At one point I gave up. Why bother trying if every diet plan just made me frustrated and grumpy? Last October I stood on the scale and the number horrified me. I hadn't even been that heavy when I was pregnant. With some good advice from my mother, I decided to give it another try. To date I have lost twenty-one pounds. I'm still working at it but there will be no quitting this time. I think I found what works for me.

Writing is a struggle, too. Mostly it is a time issue. I need to drop something from my schedule - I just haven't figured out what yet. Some of it is a confidence problem. I still see so much of my work as unreadable and wonder why I ever thought I could do this. Those are things I try to improve on daily. The bigger problem is that I am still trying to find what works.

I tend to write by the seat of my pants. I let the story flow from my fingers and just hope it makes sense in the end. It's the same way I used to write high school and college papers - not really a highly recommended method, but somehow I got by. What I've discovered is that I'm not really fond of editing. When the story is told, I want to be done. Of course, letting it all just spill out onto paper leaves a lot of holes that I have to go back and fill in. I can do it, but it just about drives me crazy.

I'm trying to teach myself to outline a little more. But I love to see where the story goes without me over-thinking it. So I need to find the balance of not too much planning, but just enough to leave me with fewer holes in the end. Someday I'll figure it out. Until then I stumble along hoping that I can pull it all together and find the right system for me. I go to conferences, participate in my critique group and read as much as I can. All the little things I pick up here and there help and I can see myself getting better all the time. It's all just part of the lengthy learning process. But if I can improve my eating habits, surely I can improve my writing habits as well. It's all just a matter of finding what works.

5 comments:

小湘 said...

給你一個鼓勵 ..................................................

C. K. Bryant said...

Great Post Stephanie. So what exactly is your weight loss secret. I'm still looking for that thing that works. Also, I'm quoting you on my blog today. Take a look later.

Stephanie Humphreys said...

I signed up for Weight Watcher`s online. The live meetings are just too expensive, but the online thing is working for me since I am on the computer all the time anyway. What I really love about it is that I choose what I want to eat as long as I keep track of it. I still drink hot chocolate just about every night, but just plan my menus so I have enough points to do so. I resisted the program for a long time, but I`m really happy with how it`s going.

Melissa said...

Hey Stephanie - Could I read a copy of your manuscript? I would love to enjoy all your hard work and if you wanted me too I could try to come up with some productive feedback. Perhaps you could bring a copy down next time you come this far south?

Stephanie Humphreys said...

I'm still working on the final edits, but I actually am looking for readers to give me some productive feedback. Hopefully I will get it done soon. I'll let you know when I am done and you can decide if you have time.

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