Under the Weather — Time for a Free Write

Under the Weather
I’m feeling decidedly under the weather (literally — this weather is weighing on me) and uninspired. Not a good thing for a daily blog. I’m writing this because I know I have to write something or else I will fall away from writing the blog after 1000-some posts. And that will really depress me.

Free Writing
So I’m going to use this as a free writing exercise. In free writing exercises, you put your pen down on paper (or fingers on the keyboard) and you just write without editing. It’s a great way to come up with ideas.

Here goes:
Brother Coyote and Kel are returning the twins (Kira and Nala) to Ridgeway III, a restricted planet. Thus what Kel is doing is borderline illegal, just as Coyote’s leaving ridgeway III was illegal. Nonetheless, he’s going on a walkabout of sorts with Kel, offering his uncanny talent of opening wormholes to her shipping business. 

One of the interesting problems they will meet with arriving at Ridgeway III is Coyote’s mother, the Convener of the Moot (i.e. Prime Minister). Coyote’s mother is a charismatic, expansive person who thinks Coyote and Kel are a good match. Given that they’ve just met and they get along like cats and dogs, she’s sorely mistaken. Probably. 

Ridgeway III is a closed world through their own choice — they don’t want their beauty planet defiled by commerce, and they’re a bit edgy about how outsiders will take their occasional inborn talents — of which Coyote’s talents are an extreme example. But Coyote is their test case, and Kel and Coyote have to keep his talent under wraps out in space.

Note how the free writing isn’t that organized. That’s okay; it will still make a good start of a story. I hadn’t gotten these ideas hashed out on paper; now I feel more anchored to what this story will flow like. 

Winter Blues (Personal)

Does anyone out there suffer from the winter blues? I’m suffering from the winter blues right now. My mood tracking app (Daylio, which I think is available for both Android and iOS) has been registering me as “Meh” the past few days. 

I manage to stave off the winter blues through the holiday season because, well, holiday cheer. I love Christmas, with its carols and greenery. But once January comes, there’s two whole months with nothing to look forward to but the end of winter. 

What am I doing to deal with the blahs? Not nearly enough. Usually at this time, I’m very involved with seedlings for the gardens at this point in the year, and this helps me keep on an even keel. But we’re working on getting the weed infestation out of the raised beds, so no seed starting. 

I’m drinking lots of coffee and eating spicy food. I’m eating too much and need to lose weight. I’m writing, and that always helps, but I don’t feel like writing much. 

So what strategies can I use? I happen to teach a positive psychology class, so I have some ideas here:

  • A gratitude journal — three things I’m grateful about and why
  • Doing good for other people
  • Using my signature strengths (link to find out here) 
  • Meditation
Be sure that I’ll put at least one of those into my repertoire.