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Thursday, April 4, 2013

Literary Pursuits - April 2013

Welcome to the second installment of Literary Pursuits.  This is a monthly-ish feature of my blog intended to keep me honest about what I'm reading and writing.  I last posted on March 1, and I missed my April 1 deadline by a few days.  Oh well.

Anyway, here's where I stand with my reading:

1.  Ingathering: The Complete People Stories by Zenna Henderson:  Still slogging away on this one.  It's a decent read, but I'll be happy when it's over and I can move on to other things.  There are a lot of characters, many of whom are interrelated and not mentioned for multiple chapters at a time; it's tough to keep track when I'm only able to pick up the book for a few minutes every few days.  I'm not abandoning it, though.  I'm up to page 389 (up from 217 last month).

2.  Jane Eyre by Charlotte Bronte:  Love having the classics on my phone for those random moments!  I'm about halfway through chapter 16 (up from chapter 12 last month).

3.  The Acts of the Apostles:  I really need to get going on this one.  My self-imposed deadline for publication of my "Gospel Agendas" bible study is the end of this month, and I can't edit the fourth session until I've reread this.

4.  When "Spiritual But Not Religious" Is Not Enough by Lillian Daniel:  I plan on writing a review for this book on Quiet Publications, but it's taking longer than I'd hoped.  Not the book's fault; I've just gotten in the habit of reading my books for review on the stationary bike at the gym, and some things have gotten in the way of that lately.  I'm currently on page 139 out of 215; I hope to finish soon.

Since last month I've finished reading How the Other Half Lives by Jacob A Riis and The Gospel According to Luke.  I've decided to abandon Ethics by Dietrich Bonhoeffer for now.  I'll pick that one up again when I'm not stretched so thin (whenever that mystical day may appear!).

And here's how I've progressed with my writing:

1.  Quiet Devotions:  My May 19 re-launch is bearing down on me, and I'm trying to get as many in the vault as I possibly can.  I'm up to 85, which means I've written 27 since I last checked in.  That's not a good start, since it's been 34 days.  If I were already publishing, I'd be down 7.  That's why I want so many in the vault before I begin!

2.  Gospel Agendas Bible Study:  I have finished rereading Luke's Gospel, but I haven't done any additional editing yet.  DEADLINE APPROACHING!  DEADLINE APPROACHING!  GET TO WORK, KAREN!

3.  Novel:  I've actually made some good progress on this one, though I'm embarrassed to admit that the only way I can make time for it is by ditching the adult Sunday School at church and working on it while the kids are in their Sunday School class.  My word count is now 8,423, so I've added 2,372 words in the last month.  Stephen King advises writing at least a thousand words a day, but Stephen King never had my life.  I'll take what I can get.

4.  Memoir:  I was putting a lot of work into this for a while, but have decided to slow down a bit.  I need to let more time pass before I can even think about publishing it, so the pressure is off to get it done.  I'll still work on it a bit while the memories are fresh, but mostly I'll be prioritizing my other projects.  My current word count is 7,224, so I've added 763.

5.  Quiet Publications Misc:  Nothing active (other than the devotions) but another book review is coming soon.

6.  Blog:  I did a little better this month, with three original posts since the last Literary Pursuits.  I've got two more planned (one of them sort of a meme, the other one original), and we'll just see where it goes.

7.  Sermons:  It's pulpit supply season!  I've got two sermons due this month, and then sometime next month I'll begin covering a six-week paternity leave, so plenty more writing there.

Actually, when I add up the average length of my devotions, my novel, my memoir, and my four blog posts (including this one) my total word count since April 1 is 15,602, which averages out to 459 words per day, every day.  It's still not King's 1,000, but it's nothing to be ashamed of, either.

What have you been up to?


  1. What you said about Ingathering is exactly how I fet about The Bourne Deception. The book was okay, written decent enough, but he jumped around a lot to fill in the story and it was tough to keep up. I finally got through it but don't think I'll read many books like that again.

    I give you huge high fives to be able to keep up with not only all that reading but so many different writing projects in addition to your everyday life. Stephen King started his career in a much different time. And personally I think half that every day is a pretty respectable count :-)

  2. Thanks Jenn! I usually don't mind long, complex books with lots of characters (speaking of Stephen King, The Stand (unabridged) is my all-time favorite). Ingathering just isn't doing it for me.

    I shouldn't worry so much about word count, but it seems a convenient way to measure progress.