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Happy New Year, Creative Mamas!

I hope that everyone had a fabulous holiday and New Year’s celebration. The new year is always full of promise and optimism, isn’t it?

With the turning of the calendar, we mark our second anniversary here at Studio Mothers (formerly Creative Construction). It is deeply rewarding to see how our community has strengthened and grown over time. LOVE. IT.

If you haven’t joined our new Facebook page, please do. This new page replaces our old Facebook “group,” as the page functionality is much more user-friendly. We’ll be sharing lots of tidbits to keep you inspired and motivated.

I look forward to another year of sharing our successes and challenges, drawing strength from our shared experiences to blend motherhood and creativity as happily as possible. Each year the kids get a little bit older, and it gets a little bit easier. The demands of motherhood never dissipate completely, of course — even my 19-year-old needs mothering — but as we have observed here on many occasions, caring for very young children requires a level of utter self-sacrifice constant nurturing and vigilance that is often incompatible with creating art. For those of us who are still in those trenches, the passing of each year makes a big difference.

Your stories and support have kept me going through my own periods of difficulty. It is such a comfort to know that we are all, in many ways, in the same boat. To that end, as always, if you would ever like to cross-post a related item from your personal blog, just let me know. We love cross-posts.

Lastly, has anyone made any New Year’s resolutions on the creative front? I made one of my own — a big one. I’m going to finish my novel by May 31. I realize that this feat won’t be nearly as impressive as writing a 50,000-word novel in a single month (congrats to all of our NaNoWriMo winners!), but this book is probably going be closer to 80,000 words, and I wanted to target a pace that I can maintain. I’m at 23,500 right now. I’m in that groove where I’m thinking about the book all the time, even when I’m not working on it — and it’s not hard to get my butt in the chair and actually produce because I WANT to be writing. I’m not wasting all my time thinking about how I SHOULD be writing and the procrastinating my time into nothingness. (This relief I owe in part to abandoning my goal of being “literary.” It is what it is.) I do plan to make use of the Monday Page 2010, and I hope you will as well!

I’m also getting much better about surrendering myself to the present moment, even when that moment isn’t exactly what I “want” it to be. (This is big progress for a Type-A-Control-Freak-Virgo like myself.) I’m starting to see that this peaceful current is available to me at any time, if I just remember to plug into it. Ah….that’s more like it.

How about you? What’s on deck for 2010? What will make this year the best one yet?

[Image courtesy Smithi1 under a Creative Commons license.]

10 Comments Post a comment
  1. hooray …. i missed studiomothers over the holiday hiatus when i had plenty of time for web surfing …..

    my resolution is to edit my nano novel and then submit it to agents …. eek! i’m not actually sure what that even means … but i have a few months to sort it out, i suppose ..

    happy new year …

    January 4, 2010
  2. Alexsondra #

    I’m finally on board, having made writing a daily habit. Now all that’s left is adding my art work in a harmonious week schedule.
    I think I can accomplish this peacefully by drawing/painting only three days a week. (but I’ll start out with just two days.)
    I think many artists run amuck trying to weave several different arenas into a wondrous tapestry. I have failed so many times,that I’m bound to be closer to a success! The lesson I have learned, is that, when adding to your already busy days, add in baby steps. It increases success,as well as preventing sabotage. This, of course sounds self explanatory, yet many of us rush into new loves with careless abandon, and why not? It’s fun. Just not necessarily prudent.

    January 4, 2010
  3. Kristine #

    Happy New Year! It feels so good to get back to normal.

    I love the “fresh start” of a new year. I’m not a big fan of “Resolutions,” per say, but I do believe in setting goals.

    My big goal for the year is to finish my novel and start the agent querying process so I can launch my writing career. I also plan to build a new Web site and start blogging again.

    No set deadline for me but instead a commitment to dedicate time every day to help me accomplish my mission.

    Good luck to everyone!

    January 4, 2010
  4. Kristine #

    Oh, and Happy Anniversary to Studio Mothers. I can’t tell you how grateful I am to have found this site and community.

    Miranda…I’m another Type-A-Control-Freak-Virgo, so I totally get where you’re coming from. 🙂

    January 4, 2010
  5. i blogged resolutions, but my creative one is two-fold: 1. edit Felix and get it out there. rewrite, virtually whole cloth, the companion book i started in nano – with a preliminary outline.

    for those interested in contests, look what i found: submissions for y/a and middle reader novels start jan 15:

    thanks to suzanne kamata of

    2. i’m damning the torpedos and putting my writing first, starting with attending a writers’ retreat at the end of this week. i don’t care if my internal voices and outer pressures are telling me i need a dang paycheck/to take care of the kids. i’m getting out of the house, so i can write/edit w/o interruptions. (of course, i also am starting the tutoring back up, so i can contribute somewhat to household income.)

    January 4, 2010
  6. re: leapfrog contest, they are also accepting for adult fiction

    January 4, 2010
  7. Liz #

    Welcome back, Studio Mothers! sounds cheesy, but I have experienced a total overhaul for the new year. Last year I was in a bad place and became very negative and ranty.

    Long story short: F that, I’m done. The cycle of bad mojo is over, so I am PUMPED to get going. I have made a few resolutions (that I have already begun to stick to). They are: Writing 3 children’s basic science picture books & getting them to an agent by the end of Feb (that’s 1 couplet a day!). I am working on a cookbook inspired somewhat by Food, Inc. (Last year I would have wrote a ranty post about it, but this year I am inspired positively by it! New attitude already – I’m loving it.) AND as far as my blog goes, I am resolving to be positive, to research things that I write about and make it a fresher, happier, cleaner place. (Just like my insides have become).

    Miranda’s fb post about managing your work time and your down time struck a chord with me. So did the discussions about getting rid of the extraneous time-suckers.

    Anyway I am not just existing this year – I’m living! And once I finish my simple projects, I am completing the last 5% of my novel’s first draft.

    So good luck, everyone! Remember that you can’t control what happens in life, and sometimes the kids have to come first before creativity. But just make sure facebook, twitter, TV, clubs you really don’t want to be involved in, a so-called friend who is always draining your reserves, drama you don’t need to be worrying about because you can’t change other people (those of you with troubled family members know what I’m talking about), and things like that should NEVER come first. Drop all your time-suckers and things that you dread every time they come up in your schedule. You’ll be amazed at how much time you have after that!

    January 4, 2010
  8. Great comments, you guys 🙂

    Liz, I share your “pump-edness,” lol. Right now I’m totally in the groove and feel like nothing can stop me. Sometimes it really is a matter of just deciding, don’t you think? (At least — I’ll ride the wave for as long as I can!))

    January 5, 2010
  9. Jen #

    Happy New Year (a little late, as usual!) and happy anniversary to Studio Mothers! What a wonderful phenomenon this has become. I do more lurking lately but it’s still lovely to see. Very energizing to see all the “new start” energy here. My “resolution” for 2010 is to live a more integrated life. This month, we’re moving to a new place which will allow that. Exciting!

    January 5, 2010
  10. thank you for all you do for us, Miranda! Good luck to you on your novel goal. I’m quite certain you’ll succeed with time to spare ! I’m not really a resolution kind of girl and I’m still thinking about my word for the year. I think I did a pretty good job last year with my word “balance”. must think on this a little more. Happy New Year everyone!

    January 6, 2010

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