Mar. 21st, 2017

float_on_alright: well when you say it like that it sounds stupid (well when you say it like that it sounds)
 Things I said I would do this month:

1) Look into agents interested in the picture book I have in mind. 
2) Start consolidating debt and work out significant plans for making payments. 
3) Ban the use of credit cards to a) paying the phone bill I split with other people until such time as they pay me and the car insurance and b) actual emergencies. 
4) Finish decluttering my spaces in the house. 

Progress so far:

1) I started working my way through the Writer's Market Guide that the library had but it was pretty cumbersome and it was the general one which meant that there were limited options for agents that worked with picture books. I found a name and started doing research to help me write a query letter and discovered that the agent had moved to a different agency. Now, that isn't necessarily a big deal, but I wasn't familiar enough with the books they were representing to feel confident writing a letter about why I had chosen that particular group for my submission. After further thought, I think I'm going to get a subscription to the Writer's Market website. It's more up-to-date and appears to have better search functions. You can get a free week-long trial for it so I could try it out to make sure that it functions as I think it does. But I'm not quite ready to turn my focus 100% to that project - which I'll get to in a few minutes. 

2) I consolidated most of my credit cards to a lower interest, lower APR loan. One of my credit cards has a better rate than the unsecured loan so I left it as is. I'll be making low monthly payments (in comparison to what the minimum payments on four credit lines were totaled up per month). The whole thing is terrifying, but I think it was the right move. 

3) This has been a huge change of pace for me but I think it's been helpful in watching my money. I realize it's only been about a week and a half but there were a lot of purchases I didn't make because I knew it would come out of my checking account instead of just showing up on a credit card statement. I know it's completely irrational, but it feels like I'm not really spending money when I use credit cards, when in fact, the exact opposite it true. Knowing I am spending my immediate funds rather than funds "I'll eventually have one day" (or something), is a powerful motivator and I should've changed to this method a decade ago.

4) I didn't feel good about taking a day off last week due to territory concerns so instead, I took off yesterday which worked out perfectly. I was also able to leave a little early on Friday which was immensely helpful as well. I'm still not done. Three days of fairly solid effort and I'm still not done. As I talk about this, I expected that I would feel disappointed that I wasn't able to complete the whole project this weekend, but honestly, I feel really proud if a little ... tired. I thought I might be frustrated but I'm not really that either, just ready to have the final product. In "The Four Agreements" one of the agreements is to always do your best - with the caveat that your "best" will vary due to things like health and circumstances. I can say sincerely that I did the absolute best I could to accomplish as much as I could while still being thorough. I did take a few breaks when I needed to rest or eat but I didn't binge a TV show when I should've been working. I didn't draw my lunch out an extra hour before dragging myself upstairs. I worked steadily and thoroughly for about 12 hours every day. And I got really did an enormous amount of work.

I can feel that I'm getting close to being done, though when I started to ask myself if I could stop decluttering at this point and just move onto organizing and rearranging, the answer was a swift, emphatic, non-negotiable, "no". I really want to have this 100% done before I dive into any more big projects. When I have my space clear and comfortable it won't "fix everything!" but I think it will help me focus and I don't want to spread myself too thin over too many projects. If everything is a priority, nothing is.


float_on_alright: i'm known as actually (Default)

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