Plans. I don’t make resolutions. I stopped even thinking about it in 1995 when I read the penultimate strip for Calvin and Hobbes (I’ve posted it elsewhere, at some point I’ll probably dig up the link and post it again). Obviously, when I write these blogs I talk about projects I’m involved in, things that are coming up, etc, but I don’t often actual set out prescribed plans or goals for a determined timeframe. That’s not exactly going to change (I know, all that build up for the massive meh). But since I will find myself with more time this summer (and after that as well) I thought I’d lay out a few plans/ goals that I have:
First off, I’d like to read more. I’ve got piles and piles of books in my “to read” bin (the “bin” is actually bookshelves). I’m going to curb my spending a bit, which means I’ll be buying far fewer books to add to my personal library (when the Roseville library, located conveniently only three blocks from my residence, reopens after their massive remodel I will spend more time there). I plan to spend time reading them. First up I think are Michael Connelly’s The Scarecrow and Nine Dragons, Dan Chaon’s Await Your Reply, Kat Richardson’s Poltergeist, and Barry Eisler’s Fault Line. I want to get seriously dosed on all the plot driven thrillers that I’ve not been reading whilst doing the reading assignments for my classes. The good news, these types of books won’t have to go back to the shelves come fall as my only class will be “Plot in Fiction” as taught by Mary Logue. This means I’ll push Steig Larsson’s book The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo to the end of summer so that it’s fresh for the fall (it’s one of my assigned texts).
Writing. This should go without saying, but all the same I’m putting it down. I need to write a book. Seriously–that’s my thesis, a book (and in my case, a novel). I’ve talked in the past about novel projects one, two and three –these are the stories that have been swimming in my head that are long-form. Novel project number one is a genre piece that I’ve got a pretty formed idea about (I know what occurs during parts one and three of the book and I know the gist of part two). It needs to be written and then rewritten. I’ve got about ninety pages and a bunch of notes. Novel project number two bounces between two time periods in the protagonist’s life and needs a lot of work. Unless I come up with a brilliant solution, this one will be tabled until after thesis as I don’t think I can fix it in the time between now and then. And finally there is novel project number three, which I have a basic idea of where the story will go and a great set-up to the story. It’s loosely outlined in my head but there is a lot I don’t know about it. I will begin by working on this project this summer and will, by summer’s end, know if I will be using this project or the first one for my thesis. I will need to write and rewrite the whole book before I start thesis fall 2011.
Art. I need to paint and draw more. I feel like there is a vitamin deficiency in my body and that deficiency is the fact that I haven’t painted or drawn a picture in a very long time. I’m not counting the doodling that I do as fulfilling this need–at most that’s like swishing some orange juice around in your mouth once a day and saying that you’re good on vitamin c. So, I want to play in my ink and paints more.
Movies. I watch them anyway, but I want to feel like watching movies that will challenge me again instead of entertaining my while allowing my brain to shut off. I bought The Hurt Locker and The New World months ago and still have not watched them. I bump into movies that have had a great impact on me again and again but haven’t revisited them because they’re so long or because there are so many that I haven’t yet seen. I want to wake up my dormant cinephile and indulge both the mainstream entertainments that I love as well as the thought-provoking and challenging films that I adore.
Swim. I have a pool, I plan to use it more. In addition to just wanting to get wet, it’ll be some good constant exercise (even treading water does something). I’ll add to this that I plan to exercise more this summer, get more active, enjoy the world outside.
Travel. Due to my economic situation I can’t really afford to take any big trips this summer, but I can visit my parent’s house, go up to Zack’s family’s lakehouse, and visit Duluth. I can and I will. Time away from the city is just as important as leisure time here.
Lastly, and most vague, I want to find joyful moments. I want to be happy. I want to find the things that make me happy and bring joy into my life–the things that most often get pushed aside due to the need to make money. These things don’t necessarily cost money and have probably been under my nose this whole time. So I want to make time to have breakfast or drinks with friends, see things, experience things. Vague, yes. But all the same, it’s on my list.
I’m going to start by getting a cup of coffee.
More later …