updates

5 SUMMER OBJECTIVES (update)

Hello, my dear and wonderful readers!

Can you guys believe that summer 2019 is wrapping up? I can hardly believe this. It seems like just yesterday I was writing the original post, which you can check out here. At this point in my life, I feel like I should be able to recognize the fact that time moves faster than light, and there’s nothing we can do about it; however, I’m still very much shocked when I realize, “Okay, wow. That’s another season gone by.”

As this post goes live, my sweet mom and I will be traversing the United States in my final journey to Los Angeles, California, where I will finish my college experience. While I am sure that drive will need a blog post, the truth is that I’m excited and a bit nervous to finish up school and get on with my life.

That being said, we’re not going to talk about that right now. Instead, let’s go back in time, to May 2019, when I was doing the opposite trip (heading from LA to Memphis, Tennessee). That fresh-faced kid is still me, but I’ve got some updates, and I’m ready to share with you guys.

Thank you again, dear readers, for putting up with my nonsense. For whatever reason, you’ve decided to journey with me. Some of you have been here for months, even years at this point; others have been here for a few seconds now. But whoever you are, thank you.

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1. WRITE AT LEAST THREE NOVELS.

Well, I kind of failed on this one. Though this summer has produced some of my best writing outside the sphere of the novel, I did want to write three books this summer, one of which was going to be a “book that matters.”

I got kind of tied up creatively, and I found myself too exhausted to produce quality content when it came to my books. For those of you who don’t know, my favorite genre of writing is the novel, and I’m normally pushing through multiple projects at once. Now that I’m flying (more on that to come) and finishing up college, I’ve got less time to pursue this #1 passion of mine.

However, I did publish one book, Church Boy, via Smashwords. That book was easy to write, thank goodness, and helped destress me during some of the more challenging parts of the summer. 

Despite all of this, this blog has grown so much more than I ever thought possible. Thank you guys for supporting me on this journey, and I have felt challenged as a writer during this summer in order to share genuine content with you all. This experience has given me so much joy, and for that I will be forever grateful.


2. COMPLETE MY INSTRUMENT RATING (flying stuff)

YES!

I actually just finished my instrument rating a few weeks ago, and that took a whole load off my shoulders. My summer goal was to get this done, and it feels amazing to have it under my belt.

If you’re not familiar with the world of flying, I’ll try to offer some insight (although I am still a baby pilot, and I’m learning a lot along the way). There are different stages to flying, and I received my private pilot certificate in April. That license, so to speak, allows me to fly single engine airplanes, such as the Cessna 172.

This summer I worked on my instrument rating, which allows me to fly through clouds and poorer weather than is required under a private pilot certificate. Though my sister said, “Seriously, that’s all that got you?” this process has been stressful, as I’ve been studying a lot more than I wanted to on my summer off from school. However, you know you’re doing the right thing when you enjoy what you’re studying, and I feel very lucky to be able to fly.

After this stage I will work on my commercial certificate, which will allow me to make money for flying, instead of spending money (haha). This certificate consists of time building, in which I must make the requirement of 250 hours before I can apply and ace a check ride to become a legal commercial pilot. Right now I’m halfway there, so I’m hoping to get this done by January 2020 and continue the next phase of flying… Instruction.

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3. PERSONAL GOALS

All right: As I look back at this original post, I laugh and smile to myself. Specifically I highlighted that I wanted a certain August date, an adjustment to Tennessee life, and to branch out more. While I definitely fulfilled two of these goals, the first one did not exactly go as planned.

Over this summer I unfortunately did become distracted by, well… I want to be cryptic, but I know you’re probably reading this with confusion. So here goes.

I met a chico (which means boy in Spanish, lol) and found myself a little distracted with that situation. Nothing came of it due to some very annoying external factors, but for two or so months I was pretty consumed by my feelings for him.

Now that it is behind me, I can smile and appreciate what I learned from it, such as the fact that there are some very good guys out there in this world of ours. And I really did learn what I’d like to find in a future potential suitor. 🙂

This all sounds completely corny, but it feels good being open for once.

As for the other two goals, bam: Tennessee isn’t perfect, but it’s a pretty darn good state. It took me no time at all to become readjusted to my life here and throw myself into my friendships, goals, and happiness at home.


4. LESS TIME ON PHONE.

My best friend and I made a summer pact, and it has been pretty amazing. We challenged ourselves to time limits on our phones and diving deep into the Bible. While I was averaging three or four hour days on my phone at college, I’ve got a limit on my phone now of two hours. This is still a whole lot of time, but it’s much better than what I was at.

Special shoutout to Megan for keeping me accountable on those fronts!


5. DRINK MORE WATER.

Another failure here. Due to my check ride and studying and outright laziness, my addiction to Diet Coke has continued. It doesn’t help that I can get a big poppa Polar Pop for $.79 at the nearby gas station. (For those of you who are unfamiliar with American money, just know that $.79 is practically nothing.)

No excuse. I’m ready for more water again, which makes me feel healthier and makes me look healthier. (Oh, good old acne, even post teenage years!)

Proof that I’ve got a Diet Coke problem. Also this picture is such a weird one, because the random young man in the background looks just like my friend Chase. Of course I had to be a creep and show Chase his doppelgänger. (Waikoloa Village, Hawaii // July 2019)

YOUR GOALS.

Enough about me. Let’s focus on you for a second. What were your summer goals, if you had some? Were you able to follow through with some of them, or did you forget to pursue them?

The good thing is that there is no better time than now. If you’re struggling with something, challenge yourself to set a goal and stick to it. It’s not easy. As you’ve seen, I’ve experienced some failures just in these silly goals, but I know what it’s like to think, “What if I’d just tried that?”

🙂

All right. Enough from me now, but please feel free to share anything in the comments below. I love every comment I receive, and you guys are the highlight of my day.

-K. ❤

 

thoughts

(no more) WASTED TIME

Sometimes the hourglass of time feels even more oppressive than normal…

This is going to be a little bit of a “venting” post, because I want to admit something to you guys. It’s not going to be Earth-shattering or panic-inducing, but it is something that you can probably relate to.

So here we go: Do you ever feel like you blink, three months have whipped by, and you’ve wasted a HUGE chunk of time?

Yup.

Okay, I want to clarify: I do not feel as if I have completely wasted the past three months. I am a full-time college student, student pilot (LOL, one of these days I will finally have my license), and writer. On the social side, I hang out with a bunch of roaches (I promise, this is an endearing term) 24/7 and try not to pull out my hair due to the infuriating ways of other twentysomethings. But these things make me so happy, and I love flying and my ridiculous friends.

That being said, there is a continent of me that has been underwater for the past few months. This part of me is like Atlantis waiting to be rediscovered, and I’m sick of drowning in something I’ve caused for myself.

I’ve been writing less and less these past few months, and I can attribute it to multiple things. I knew that I wouldn’t be writing as much this semester, which contributed to my goal of finishing five novels over the summer, but I did not realize it would be this bad.

In the past three months, I have started three novels, left all of them in the dust, and waited for magic to pull me up from the bottom of the ocean. However, that’s not how writing works. I truly believe good writing comes from stretching the writing muscle, and I’ve been atrophied for quite some time.

It’s not that I don’t have material, because being away from home gives me tons of material, as you can imagine. It’s not that I don’t have the time, though my California life does get tiring. It’s not that I don’t want to do it, because writing makes me happiest (although it’s getting closer and closer to a tie with flying).

So what have I been doing to myself? Isn’t it true that if you love something, you’ll do anything to be doing it? What’s wrong with me?

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Santiago, Chile (November 2017) I am happiest when I write. I also like being a weirdo in Chilean planetariums.


CAUSES

School

Unfortunately, I do have to go to school, and this takes up considerable chunks of time. A bonus fact: I am in a creative writing class that claims the time I could use to write what I want to write, which feels pretty counterproductive.

Friends

I love my friends to death, but it is a constant battle between wanting to hang out and be with them versus taking time for myself (AKA writing). This semester I have been pretty bad at remembering to swallow my introverted pill and catch a few hours to write and recover.

With any sort of social group, there are going to be things that take up headspace, and I can pinpoint certain components of this to the reasons why I haven’t had the right mentality to write. 😉

Flying

This is the only school that matters to me right now. I am in full-blown study mode and since this is going to be my future career path, I know I need to focus more on this part of my life now. Therefore, some of my writing time will be snatched up by flying, but that’s okay. I just have to reorganize my priorities.

What do I want to write?

The three attempts I’ve made over the three months have been varied: There is a psychological thriller, Southern Gothic drama, and cheesy romance. I think I’m struggling with what I want to write, because I’m not a genre-specific writer.

My mind has been elsewhere

You’ve got to be in the game to write, and even more committed if you want to write well. With normal life comes normal struggles, including bouts of stress and exhaustion, and this affects writing as well.


SOLUTIONS

Clear that headspace

What does this mean, you may be asking? Well, for me, it means getting the heck out of dodge. When I’m feeling suffocated, I grab my keys and hop in the car. A nice drive cleanses my mind, especially when I’ve got the windows down and the music on full-blast. Other methods include a nice jog or hike, a heart to heart with a friend, or brainstorming a story at a coffee shop.

Take time for myself

All right. We all know that there are extraverts (those who feed off social interaction) and introverts (those who need time to recover after a social experience) in society. There are even people who are ambiverts, a blend of both extraverts and introverts.

I used to be very introverted, got more extraverted in college, and now consider myself to be an ambivert. There are moments I live off social interaction, but moments when I desperately need to be by myself.

The cure is normally writing. But these past few months, my cure has been missing, and therefore I’ve felt really strange as a result.

You have to take time for yourself, no matter where you are in life or who you are. When it comes down to it, we all have to live with, you guessed it, ourselves. It feels good sometimes to take a breath and a moment for yourself.

In these moments, when I stop and let my mind ramble on and on, I gain some of my best plot ideas.

Force myself to do it

Daily quota, where you at? If you’ve read some of my earlier writing posts, you know I am infatuated with the concept of the daily quota, in which a writer commits him or herself to a set word limit per day. It is a great way to rehearse the art of writing, even if you have no idea what you want to write about.

While this worked for me in years past, it has been missing in my way of life for the past three months, so it’s time to reestablish THE DAILY QUOTA!

Cut out negative energy

Negative, convert to positive. Those terrible feelings that are bringing you down need to be cut out, and there are multiple ways to do this. Prayer works. Eliminating bad influences works. Trying new things works. It just depends on who you are and how you handle situations, and you know the toxic aspects of your life.

Why have those toxic aspects when they only cause more problems in the long run? I know what mine is, and I’m going to try my hardest to rid myself of its influence.


NO MORE.

 

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A winery near Salta, Argentina (October 2017) Describes how I feel when I cannot write. 😉

There has got to be a “stake in the ground moment” in which you are the one who knows what is happening versus what should be happening. This comes into all facets of life, whether that be with writing or relationships or choosing to cut out a Diet Coke addiction (yeah, right).

Therefore, I’m going to say, “No more,” to not writing. I’m going to scream it from a mountaintop if I have to, because my happiness is improved ten-fold when I’m working on a project.

Now let’s connect this to your life. What is the thing that you’ve been neglecting? Maybe it’s a person you haven’t been talking to. Maybe it’s a hobby you’ve forgotten. I’m sure if you think super hard you’ll be able to think of something. My request for you all is to think of this thing and work your hardest to mend the situation. You’ll know the solution if you can identify the problem.

Until next time,

-K.

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Nevada/California Border (August 2016) Describes how I feel when I’m writing. What a dork!

 

updates

SUMMER’S END (update)

Well, my dear readers, it is that time of year…

Summer is coming to an end. (At least in the States, where school has started… Yet in the South, it’s still as humid as a nightmare and will be for quite some time.) This also means that I will be leaving home to head back to college. Though I love being at home so much, I am ready for the adventures this next year is sure to toss my way.

At the beginning of the summer, as soon as I got back from Argentina, I wrote a blog post titled  SUMMER’S HERE (and reality too) where I talked about my goals for the past three months. Therefore, I thought it would be a little fun to update you guys.


GOAL #1: BOOK SITCH

  1. My goal is to find an agent, send out my manuscripts to as many people as possible, to gain experience and to get my name out there.

  2. Also, I expect to write about two to three novels this summer. I hope I can fulfill that goal.

Well, as you guys know by now, I love writing/books. It’s actually a pretty strong addiction that destroys my wrists from all the typing and takes up a large chunk of my time. This summer, I was writing for… Well, if we’re being honest… I was writing about four-to-five hours a day.

Writing this much can be great, but it can also be very physically and emotionally deteriorating, because I will admit–I am a workaholic when it comes to my stories. I am constantly planning the next book I want to write, whereas I need to focus more on the book I’m currently writing.

Before this turns into a winded rant, I will say that I am still looking for an agent, and I think that will be a goal for the foreseeable future. I am about to query for two novels I wrote this summer, and I will update you along the way.

To answer the second goal… I significantly challenged myself to write as much as possible, and I was able to crank out five books this summer. While this may seem ridiculous, it really is, but considering that I averaged between two and three thousand words a day, I still had time to edit these books as well.

Three of those novels are part of a romance trilogy I conceived abroad, while the other two are novels that took more of my time and creative juices. While I’d love to discuss more about these books, that will probably be a separate blog post so I don’t ramble forever and ever. That being said, I am very excited with one of my projects, and I can’t wait to write about it. Soon, I promise! 🙂


GOAL #2: PLANE SITCH

When I was a kid, I always told people, “I want to be a pilot.”

At sixteen, I had my first flying lesson. While I enjoyed it, I wasn’t sure I was ready to commit to that path.

At nineteen (last summer), I bought a pilot book on learning the ropes of flying, and I became obsessed with it in Argentina. For all the classes in which I was learning nothing, my pilot book was able to give me new information, new knowledge, new insight.

At twenty, I hope to be flying.

Well, this is a goal that excites me beyond belief!

I’m also working on obtaining my private pilot license… More on that to come! Flying is truly amazing, though there is so much to learn and study. It is actually stimulating to be able to fly, and though I don’t want to hate on my college experience, I feel as if my experience flying versus working on my bachelor’s degree… Well, that would probably be an interesting blog post.

I’m at fifteen hours of flight time (forty hours is the requirement), and I think I’ll be able to get my license by December.


GOAL #3: MAKE MONEY (BUT MAKE THE MOST OUT OF MY TIME)

I only have two summers left before I graduate college and am expected to be a full-fledged adult. That means time is running out. However, I’ve still got time to pursue my passion (writing, of course), goals (a healthy bank account which will be destroyed by flying lessons), and creating long-lasting relationships.

Now that I’ve only got one summer left before the real world shows up at my doorstep, I’m excited. I have a plan. I know what I want to do, who I want to be, and how I can get there… And I know that things don’t exactly go by the book all the time. 😉

This summer has taught me that money is valuable, but time is even more so. Every day we get is one less day we have, and it’s crucial to make the most of the present. Some of my favorite memories of my summer are just snapshots of the most mundane situations: Laughing with friends and family; holding a paper copy of my book in my hands; jamming with my mom in the truck to ’80s salsa music.

Time  〉Money


So, there you have it, my summer in a nutshell. While some could see this as possibly very boring… Just a young chica writing, flying, and hanging out with family and friends… I think it was one of my favorite summers, because I got to do what I love with the people I love most.

Though this has centered on me, I’d like to shift the focus to you, my reader. You’ve got goals too, even if you haven’t put the pen to paper yet. Though I’m not typically a person to list things out, I’ve found that it is amazing to reflect on the seasons, and especially if you are a forgetful person like I am. Find your goals, and stick to them. Maybe you won’t make as much progress as you hope, but any progress is better than nothing at all.

Though this summer is ending, life isn’t. Go for whatever makes you happiest, and whatever makes you fly as high as you can go.

-K.

P.S. Here are a few of my favorite moments of this summer, because I’ll probably read this post a year from now and have forgotten most of these. 🙂

  • My final flight lesson for the summer with my instructor. We got to fly downtown, and I finally figured out how to land without killing us.
  • Taking pictures with one of my close friends who just got engaged!
  • Hanging out with my friends in Wisconsin and trying to pick up the Midwestern accent. I think I sound pretty neutral, but people tell me I’ve got a Southern voice. Bless their hearts!
  • Taking my sister to the library once a week.
  • On my flight to Baltimore, my mom was cross-stitching the whole time, and everyone enjoyed this. A pro tip for mending our divided world: Cross-stitchers unite!
  • Discovering the dream-pop band Beach House while driving my sister to and from school.
  • Finally learning how to decode what the heck ATC (air traffic control) is saying to me as I fly.
  • Reconnecting with old friends.
  • Connecting with new friends. 😉
  • FINDING OUT THAT I HAVE 61 AMAZING AND WONDERFUL WORDPRESS FOLLOWERS!!! A special shoutout to you guys. You make this such an enjoyable experience with your likes, comments, follows, and re-blogs. Thank you for spending some time on my blog. ♥