Sketchbook #42

The end of April kind of snuck up on me, but here it is: time to check in with how I’m doing with my overall creative goals, and figure out what those goals are going forward.

My big goal, of course, was to finish up the third draft of The Black Sun. I’m technically still working on that, but I’m counting it as ‘done.’ The work is done; all that’s left is the final polish—tidying up a few typos and making sure the big edits didn’t introduce continuity errors, that sort of thing. I’ve done the read-through, and… I’m happy with it. I should be finished the polish in the next couple of days.

I’ve also been brainstorming the next projects. I’ve got a good basic plot and world for the next novel, and should be ready to start character work and outlining sometime in the next month. I’ve also got a vague plan for another thing, but… it’s very vague (as in, I still need to figure out the characters and plot). I’m not sure how quickly I’ll be able to get to that, but I’m mostly treating it as a side project right now, so there’s no rush.

The brainstorming for that side project also helped me clarify some of my plans for the second draft of Violet Lane. I haven’t started work on that, but that’s my big writing goal for May: to come up with a clear plan of attack for that draft, and to complete the outline.

(And I’m finally getting a handle on Scrivener. I still don’t like the file sizes, or the proprietary format, but I’m absolutely in love with the organizational features, and I’m slowly figuring out how to make the application work the way I want and need it to. I like it enough that I broke down and invested in the iOS version… and at $30 Canadian, it is an investment, so I’d better make good use of it.)

Overall, I’m happy with my writing progress this month. Normally, I’d take a break after reaching major milestones in two different projects, but… I don’t really want to. I want to keep this momentum going.

I’m also really happy with my 366 photo project this month. It hasn’t been perfect—winter hung on a little longer than I expected, and the rain has been awful lately—but I’ve had flowers to play with and I’m getting back into a black & white groove, and… it’s been good. I have a few vague plans for photographic goals for the next little while, but I’m still figuring them out, and… really, they’re the sort of thing I’ll be keeping to myself, at least for now. (Mostly because they’re boring skill-building sorts of things.)

I’ve also taken a single tiny step in the direction of my other big photography goal for the current quarter. It’s not much, but… it’s progress. I’ll take another few steps in May, and I’m still on track to make the official announcement in June. (I hope.)

What about that whole creative hobby thing?

I still haven’t figured out my goals—or if I even have goals—when it comes to drawing or lettering, and I haven’t really been doing anything in that department. I’m not too worried about that. The whole thing’s an experiment, and I’m not going to force it. (I mean… it’s a hobby. It’s supposed to be purely for fun.)

I haven’t been doing any sewing either, but I have been moving in the right direction. I’ve got the supplies I need to make a muslin for the dress I’ve been planning (and, if that goes well, another project), and I’m ready to move forward on that. I might have to hold off on the actual dress for a while—I’ll need to go to the good fabric store for that, and hope that they’ve got something I like—but I can’t wait to get started.

So, yeah: April was a good month, and I feel like I’ve got some good creative momentum going into May. Let’s see if I can keep it up.