Tag Archives: writing

Carving Out Time

By Vicki Hughes               Posted Sept. 11, 2013

I am writing a book. (Have I told you that yet?) The subject matter is Gratitude, in case that isn’t obvious from my complete fascination with the subject. As I get a little further down the line, I will be sharing more with you on this, but here is what has been on my radar.

I’ve been researching my book, and that means I have been nose-to page in books whenever I’m not at work, which isn’t very often. I have book-books and Kindle books, and of course, a herd of my own journals that I’m constantly scribbling in, like mad.

On most mornings, I try to set aside at least one hour to write. That one hour is rarely all spent writing, but sometimes it really gets rolling, and then I have to put the brakes on the writing train so I can get to work on time.

More and more, I am learning to make time. I carve it out intentionally, and part of that process is identifying the little things that rob me of the time I need. This has caused me to see how I have managed to not write a book in the past, simply because I was under the illusion that I would do it once I found the time.

Recently I felt a tiny, Thomas Edison-style light bulb appear over my head regarding time.

Here’s something to think about if you’re prone to putting things off until you find the time. Finding time is like finding money. It’s nice when it happens, but you can’t rely on it. Both money and time, to be available when you need them have to be made, and then protected, not simply found.

So. A big part of me getting this book written is making the time to write a book. As my mentor, Jim Rohn was known to say, “The don’t give out big trophies for small efforts.”

Time is passing, regardless of what I choose to do with it. I can maximize mine or let it get away. Today I intend to use it well.


© Vicki Hughes 2013

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Aunt Erma Would Be Proud


By Vicki Hughes  Posted April 16, 2013

In case it isn’t obvious, I adore Erma Bombeck. I found her when I was a twenty-something young mother of a rambunctious toddler, and her wit was my cup of tea. I related to her lack of enthusiasm for housework, the mind numbing redundancy of laundry, and her secret fears that true self actualization might be possible with the right deodorant or the next self help book, but that I might be reading the wrong one, or slathering my pits with the wrong speed stick.

Erma gave me hope that an ordinary wife and mother could build a real writing career, and express herself with self deprecating humor and a little real, honest look at how life really is.

I won a little online writing contest with Midlife Collage this past week. And I have to give Aunt Erma a little nod, because she gave me hope that everyone starts somewhere, and sometimes it’s a very unglamorous place. Here’s to progress, and going for it, and for the people who actually read what I write. You have made my day, possibly my year.


© Vicki Hughes 2013

How To Get Clear on What You Want to Do (and also freak out)


By Vicki Hughes    Posted March 30, 2013

A couple months back, I posted as my Facebook status, “Caterpillars are just butterflies in fur coats.” I’d been going through my own caterpillar experience. I had a lump in my breast. When your fingers make that discovery, it takes a few minutes for your brain to process the implications. And you forget to breathe.

Due to some insurance complications, I wasn’t able to run screaming into the ER, demanding immediate answers. So, I began a waiting game that felt like a combination of Russian Roulette, Operation, and Perfection, that nerve wracking game where the little plastic pieces fly up in your face if you don’t get them crammed in the right spots before the end of the world, “POP! Goes Perfection!”

Having the lump was freaking me out, and yet I didn’t want to discuss it with anyone until I knew exactly what we might need to discuss. Why should we all be freaking out?

So, I’d breathe in, and breathe out, and then I’d think some scary-ass thoughts and then I’d turn it over to God, and then I’d feel a twinge in my chest and wonder what the hell that was, and then I’d quote a healing scripture, and then I’d read, and then I’d distract myself, and then I’d take a shower and try to decide if I should feel the lump again, and then I’d tell it to dissipate. I laid hands on myself, I tapped, I drank tea, I drank martinis, I praised God for insurance, I laughed at funny shows, I felt numbness in my arm, I felt freaked out, I felt guilty for not saying anything to anyone, then I decided there’s nothing to say to anyone yet, and I’d tell myself to calm down. I’d discover that I was breathing very shallowly and wonder if it was stress or some sort of a symptom. I mentally calculated the hours I’d work that week, I looked forward to seeing my best friend for the weekend, and rejoiced that this delayed doctor’s appointment meant our visit would not be marred by possibly bad news.

I freaked out some more and wondered how long it would take to get the mammogram results. I reminded myself that my family is very healthy, I caught myself thinking morbid thoughts, I made myself take a deep breath. I went for a walk, I made cookies, I played on Facebook, I wrote quotes in my quote journal, I pet the dog and listened to the rain. I made tacos and I swept the crumbs off the counter, I lit a candle and I took out the trash. I got choked up reading a story about a woman whose dog died, and I admired the puffy white clouds that were floating by. I listened to Chelsey lament all the things she still needs to do at her house and I felt bad that I didn’t have the energy to offer to help her. I went to my room and flopped, face down on the bed, and appreciated how good it feels just to lie there. I wished I had more time to write and contemplated ways to make that happen.  I considered how writing is my gift, my calling and my purpose, and I realized that it would suck if I needed an illness to give myself permission to pursue it with passion. I felt mildly guilty that John wanted my attention and I felt selfish and I just didn’t want to play, and then I justified it with the fact that I’d baked him cookies. I allowed myself room to be both scared and confident that it would all work out. I was doing my best. In the end, that has to be enough.

Sidenote: Simple cyst, no malignancy. Resume breathing.

© Vicki Hughes 2013