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I’m arriving at a house, expected. By appointment. I’m there to retrieve some things, or perhaps to relieve someone. I walk upstairs to a fluorescent lit kitchen. There’s a book on the counter, tattered paperback. I pick it up, leaf through its pages, see her handwriting in notes in the margins. I hope this book is part of the package I’m here to get, but I don’t know if he will allow me to take it. I walk into the living room and she sits on the floor in front of the TV, in a bathrobe, small and young and weak and strong and held in reserve. We exchange awkward hellos. She waves towards the back of the room and I turn towards him. He’s also hunched on the floor, going through a box of books. I ask about the one in my hand; may I? His face sours. His eyes flick towards her and back at me. I await his answer.

It’s Friday! Have a funny cat video. You deserve it!

How did I do on my writing goals yesterday?

  • I did find another two sites I can query or pitch to.
  • I did not look for any content farm sites.
  • I did search Mechanical Turk for writing HITs; found none.
  • I didn’t work on my novel.
  • I didn’t keep track of interesting articles.

I did apply for a non-writing job I found on Craigslist. Also made another $10 doing surveys on MTurk. And I found three technical writer positions late in the day; I’ll apply for those, after doing some research. The descriptions for the technical writer jobs all mention UML, and DMD; I have no idea what those are.

Must make some time to work on the novel today. Also, I’d like to post something here that isn’t just a daily check-in. And it’s time to hustle and submit stories to the sites I’ve found.

“Hustle” is such a great word. I thank my friend Tristan J. Tarwater for that word.

How did I do yesterday on my writing goals?

  • I did not look for more sites to send my freelance articles.
  • I did not look for any content farm sites.
  • I did search Mechanical Turk for writing HITs. Didn’t find any but I did a couple bucks worth of surveys.
  • I didn’t work on my novel at all.
  • I didn’t keep track of interesting articles online.

I did fill out my Contently site a bit more last night, including some links to some product descriptions I wrote for Mturk last year. I wasn’t sure they’d still be on the web, but I searched and found them. I saved a bunch of them as PDFs for my own records. Sure, it’s mind-numbing marketing copy but it’s still writing I got paid for.

How many days will I write “I did not work on my novel at all.” until I shame myself into working on my novel? Maybe the third time’s the charm! The day’s not over yet!

I’m numbering this Daily Check-In but I didn’t number the previous one. I’m whacky.

How did I do on my daily writing goals yesterday?

  • I did find two sites that accept freelance work.
  • I did not search for, nor find, any content-farm sites.
  • I did search Mechanical Turk for writing-related HITs and found none.
  • I didn’t work on my novel at all.
  • I did keep track of interesting stories; I saved 4 links.


In fact, I submitted some clippings and wrote a writing-specific resume and submitted it to an editor, which took me literally all day because I was anxious about it. But I did, in fact, do it. Finding and saving clippings of my favorite posts took about an hour; and I did it at the bar, because the beer helped quiet that voice in the back of my head.

It was interesting reading back over old posts here. I wrote a lot. And I wrote well, although now, reading back over some of my posts, I can see what I would change. That’s a topic for a post on its own, though.

I also looked into how other writers keep track of their clippings, going as far as setting up my profile at and Contently. Feels odd linking to posts here and at Tumblr but that’s what I’ll have to do until I’m published elsewhere, I suppose.

Today’s plans: polish at least one story for submission to the other site I found, work on the novel, add links to my and Contently profiles. Maybe a blog post here. I have already searched Mturk and completed a HIT or two.

How did I do yesterday on this week’s goals?

  • I haven’t (yet) found sites that accept freelance writing.
  • I haven’t (yet) found content farm sites.
  • I did search Mechanical Turk yesterday for writing HITs; found none.
  • I didn’t work on the novel at all.
  • I didn’t keep track of interesting stories.

I did write a 500+ word post yesterday morning. Also, I had a mandatory meeting, which took some time to take the bus downtown and back again, so that took a chunk out of my afternoon. And I also applied for two different part-time jobs.

I’m not giving up, though. I’m building habits. Today will be better.


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