I love this time in the kids' lives. They are more independent and the teenagers (there are now 2) are increasingly active. Getting them from A to B and sometimes G in any given week reminds me of growing up. I hope to give the kids the same experiences I had because I look back at my time in high school as some of the best of my life. However, they are now dealing with mandatory social isolation and home base learning, which has halted most of our external activities.
Writing is still a personal priority but at times it takes a back seat to all the other things that need to get done. I completed a second draft of my first middle grade novel (yipee) and then start the whole thing from scratch (sigh) while working with a Story Grid Certified editor. I'm now on my second, second draft and the story is much better from a structural perspective and I think it's more interesting. I will keep working this novel so I can go through the process of re-writing and re-writing. I hope to have it published one day.
My friend Jennifer and I have also been working on a book of writing and art by female veterans and we've secured grant funding from DVA to have it published. The internal design of the book is currently underway (it looks amazing so far) and we are finalising endnotes, a foreword and all the details that are easy to miss if you've never published a book before - luckily for me Jen has. We hope to have this book available towards the end of the year.
I am also studying story structure. The Story Grid by Shawn Coyne, The Writer's Journey by Christopher Vogler, and now I'm reading The Anatomy of Story by John Truby. Understanding story structure is essential to writing good stories, but more importantly for busy people like me - it saves a great deal of time. Plotting and then writing a better first draft is the one of the advantages, then knowing how to identify and fix problems, as well as what scenes to focus on and which ones that need a little less attention has been a revelation. I also have a few more books on structure and story lined up, but more on those later.
I have been toying with an idea about a podcast featuring tips and stories from creatives who care (for others). Time savers will probably be a feature heavily - if I get time to start it.
Now that I've put it out there...I'd better start working on it.