The book is just rockingÂ along! Â I’ve now written significant portions of eight of the thirteen chapters, about 5,000 words in total. Â I’m hoping to write about 1,000 words per day, which would complete the rough draft in about a month. Â I’m not putting a time target on it because there is so much other stuff going on! Â But I am enjoying it so much it’s hard to stop writing.
Here’s another snippet, on choosing projects:
It’s important to distinguish between performance projects and learning projects. Â Performance projects focus on the end result: producing a perfect piece. Â Learning projects focus on what you learned, not the final result. Â In truth most projects fall somewhere in between, but it’s important to recognize the tradeoff: making a technically perfect piece usually requires working within your existing skills, which means you won’t learn as much as if you went off into the weeds exploring a learning project.
What projects I choose depends on three things: my skill level, what I want to explore, and what I want to produce. Â Typically, most of my early projects are learning projects, selected for what will develop skills and knowledge fastest. Â They come out of a book or a magazine, possibly as part of a beginners’ study course. Â Later, as I master the basic skills, I’ll take elementary projects and change them radically, or else challenge myself technically, tackling projects incorporating advanced techniques. Â I typically save performance projects for later, after I’ve honed my skills.
In other news, I’ve been working on paring down projects. Â I had the following on my plate:
- Autumn Splendor, due Feb 15
- the book!
- buying our first house (starting with a meeting with the realtor on Jan 9)
- an online class on visual design, beginning Jan 6
- an online class on surface design, beginning Jan 20
Normally I have two or three projects going on at any one point, but five is ridiculous! especially since the first three are so intense, and my day job is in a state of crisis. Â So – much as I hate to do it – I have dropped the surface design class. Â I think the class on visual design will be much less time-intensive, so I’ve left it on the books, but may drop out of that one as well. That leaves three Major Projects, which is still too many, but I think I can make it work.
Off to write some more!