Quality.

jan15-01

I have deemed 2015 the year of quality.

Though, despite my best interests and attempts it has been a little less than quality for the past week and a half, as our bedroom and den flooded, so it’s been making for some less than stellar living arrangements. But other than that, quality is still the end goal!

I want to work on focusing on purging things from my life that really don’t add much to the quality of it. Whether it be possessions, clothing, food, and even some people (although not like the movie The Purge, that would just be sinister). I’ll be turning 30 this year, and while the prospect of getting older doesn’t exact me make me feel a whole lot of anything, not being in my twenties anymore does … if that makes any sense at all. As such, I just feel like I need to stop living like I have been in so many ways. I’m an adult (supposedly), and I’d like to start living like one in some ways. Not by becoming boring or finding fart jokes any less hilarious, but just taking pride in my life, how I’m living it, and the quality of the things and people in it.

I’m tired of having all of this band-aid type furniture in my life, things that I purchased from JYSK not even a year ago and are already falling apart. I’m tired of having things … just random stuff that I don’t really need or use taking up space in my closet and in my life. I’m tired of looking in my closet and dresser and seeing clothes that I don’t really like that are falling apart or don’t fit well. I’m tired of eating foods that don’t make me feel very good, or made their way to my plate in a less than ethical journey (Brad and I watched a short documentary on factory farming which made us think really hard about the meat that we are consuming).

As for the people, I’m not tired of them. I love the people in my life. But my recent trip back to Halifax made apparent some things that I had already figured out, just needed to see in action, as it were. I’d rather have a small handful of really good friends than a lot of acquaintances, some of whom can’t find an hour in a two week span to maybe spend some time with me for the first time in almost a year. Perhaps a Facebook culling is in order.

(I won’t deny that I’m a little hurt by someone who I thought was a really good friend, but I didn’t hear from them at all, even when I reached out. And then I happened to see them by chance and got only a small wave as they breezed right past me.)

The year has been off to a shaky start. As I mentioned above, our bedroom and den flooded last week, and has put us in a state of limbo. It’s very hard to live where we currently are and try to start making good on a lot of the resolutions that we have made. But I have been making an effort to eat better and to plan our meals (with Brad’s help and input, of course), which I think is really good start! I’ve even cut beer out of my life, which is really hard for me because I do legitimately enjoy a lot of the craft beers that Victoria has to offer. But having two or more makes me feel ill, and they’re just empty calories that I’m currently storing in my middle region.

Once things settle down a bit after our move, I’m going to start working out in some capacity. I’m getting a little rounder, a little softer, and honestly that’s okay with me, I just want to manage my own health a little bit more … maybe be a little less round and soft. I’ve put on 15 – 20 pounds since arriving in Victoria, and really I think that I’m getting to an age where I need to actively start taking better care of myself. I don’t think I need to make a whole lot of drastic changes, just maybe go to the gym a couple nights a week, lift some weights when I’m sitting on the couch and watching television.

It’s little things. Baby steps. I didn’t make a whole lot in the way of resolutions this year. I just want to work at being a better, happier, more fulfilled me than I already am, and live a life of quality, one that I’m happy with. I want to write more. I want to do more.

It doesn’t have to be perfect. Perfect is boring. I just want to feel better in all the ways that I possibly can.

Simply having a wonderful Christmastime!

christmas2014-1

Just a quick post to wish you all a Merry Christmas! Brad and I are currently back in our hometown, and have been for about a week already, celebrating the holidays with family and friends that we’ve not seen for a year. It’s been a very hectic and very wonderful time down on the East Coast! We’ve been relying on public transit, and as a result, one of my resolutions for 2015 is to get my licence, so that we can rent a car when we’re in town next year. But I wouldn’t change our time here at all – I’ve felt so incredibly loved by everyone I know since we arrived. We’ve had to turn down some plans, simply because there isn’t enough time. We really need to come and visit for a month next year just so we can get so much more visiting in!

I am not at all ashamed to admit that I cried when I finally got to hug my Mum and Dad for the first time since January. There are a lot of things that don’t really bother me about being on the other side of the country, but not getting to spend time with my parents and my sister is one of the things that just really guts me sometimes. My family and I are really close, and sometimes there is nothing that I want more than a hug from my Mum or Dad. And my first Christmas without Carmen has been especially difficult. I’ve broken down a few times. Even though I knew she wouldn’t be here, experiencing it has been something else entirely.

Anyway, this wasn’t meant to be a sappy post, that will possibly come later when I get around to updating once we’re home after the holidays!

I hope that you’re having the most wonderful of times, regardless of what you celebrate, spent with family, friends, and those close to you! Merry Christmas!

Tackling (and failing) NaNoWriMo.

Participant-2014-Web-Banner

NaNoWriMo, for those who don’t know, is National Novel Writing Month, which takes place yearly in the month of November. Since 2008, I’ve done this challenge most years (save for 2012) with varying degrees of success. The object of the challenge is to write 50,000 words of a novel, or a novella, within a month. I won (winning constitutes writing at least 50,000 words and uploading your writing to the site to have your word count verified) in 2011, with just over 51,000 words of a zombie epic, which I lovingly referred to as “Zombie Cold Mountain” (the actual working title was “Resurrection”). Since then, the project has remained largely untouched, as I reached a point in the story where I became stuck and didn’t know where to go from there. I’ve revised bits of it, and started hashing out ideas for what to do from the point where I stopped, but my attempts to actually sit down and finish it have ended up with me watching videos of corgis on YouTube.

Since 2011, I’ve attempted two different stories – a story of a werewolf hunter searching for the individuals who killed his family, save for his youngest sister, and a supernatural/historical mash-up involving a family of witches, time travel, and WWII. With the former I managed a little over 16,000 words, and my latest attempt found me stonewalled at 1,600.

This year, I feel like I have many excuses for not meeting the word count – I had two friends, and family members come in from out of town all within the span of a week, and I was dealing with some personal issues that left me feeling pretty low, uninspired, and scared (everything is perfectly okay now, for those who may be worrying). Our current space isn’t conducive to much of anything, but especially creativity. It’s hard to sit in our dark den, in an uncomfortable computer chair, at an oddly put together desk, or in our kitchen at our table, and try to force myself to feel creative. I explained this to Brad, sure he would think I was silly, but he completely understood.

Again, there are many excuses this year. But there always are any time that I don’t win NaNoWriMo.

I love writing, but over the past couple of years it’s become more of a struggle. I loathe to have an unoriginal idea, and sometimes coming up with something “original” is practically impossible. Few stories are original anymore, all borrowing from the same stories, the same themes. It’s something that I just need to get over. There’s also this sinking feeling that I don’t have enough hours in my day, so squirreling away time to sit down and force myself to be creative is difficult. I used to be a bit of a night owl, staying up until midnight or later most nights. But since moving in with Brad, I go to bed at a fairly reasonable hour, which removes a couple of hours from day …

See? More excuses!

At the end of the day, I’m okay with not winning NaNo this year. Would I eventually like to complete some manner of novel? Of course! But maybe not right now, and I’m okay with that. If I have to tinker with a bunch of ideas that I really don’t care for in order to get there, that’s all right. I’m quite content to churn out a couple of sentences here and there, until something finally picks up steam and becomes something that I actually want to write about. Maybe “Zombie Cold Mountain” will be that story, or maybe it will be something else entirely.

If nothing else, NaNoWriMo forces me to sit down, even if it’s only for a little bit, and put pen to paper, so to speak. The hardest part of writing sometimes is just sitting down and doing it, tapping those keys until something begins to take shape. Sometimes it does and doesn’t go far, and there’s nothing wrong with that.

I am going to try writing something outside the confines of NaNoWriMo. Perhaps in the new year, as the following few weeks are ramping up to be quite busy. I’ll make every month Megan Novel Writing Month! There may be different word counts, a different set of goals, but the act of just sitting down and committing to something on a creative scale may be the kick in the butt that I need to finish something worth sharing. ♥