WOOT! Back to School and Schedules!

smileysun2It’s still hot in DC.  I know it’s September, but it’s still “summer weather” here.  I know our Aussie pals are wishing we’d send it their way.  They’ve had a long soggy winter down under.  They could use some of this unrelenting sunshine.  Grins.

The best news though is that it’s time for our kids, here in the States, to go back to school.  Hallelujah!!!Attic blog 2 011

Now don’t get me wrong, I enjoy summer.  Barbeques.  Beach vacations.  Pool time.  And in our case, lots, and lots, and LOTS of baseball.  My son, as you can see, has now topped me by a considerable amount.

(In that picture on the left, he’s measuring himself against a picture of one of the Washington Nationals’ players, Max Scherzer, who’s 6’3″ – eek!  Eldest Son is only 15!)

Cooper in front of Max SherzerWe also got some time at a water park, wherein I got a new pair of Wolf Ears.  The pic down at the very bottom is of me in said Wolf Ears.  It’s from Great Wolf Lodge in Williamsburg, VA, which I highly recommed for everyone, regardless of whether you have kids.  There is something so exhilarating about slinging down a tornadic water ride….well, at least there is for me.  Ha!

All that said, however, I haven’t gotten near as much writing done as I wanted and needed to do this summer.  I had goals, people.  Page goals, word goals, please-just-get-some-time-to-write goals.

Ah, but no joy here in Mudville, as the old story goes, because my time in the chair with my hands on the writing keyboard were not many.

But WAIT!!!!  It’s September!  Wonderful wonderful September!   Schooooooool started last week.  YEEEEEHA!!!  I have a SCHEDULE again!

*Cue the happy chorus of klited singing Scotsmen!!*  What, you didn’t know about the Singing Scotsmen?  Well, heck, y’all, it’s my celebration, right? So sing on, Kilties, sing on!securedownload3-2-1

Anyway, I keep a Daybook – a big fat paper calendar.  It sits on my desk.  The binder is from what used to be called a “DayTimer”system.  Good leather, it’s lasted for years.  But, alas, that company is no more.  They were swallowed up by the Franklin-Covey planner people.

That’s okay, they make good stuff too.  And I like Covey’s idea of putting the big stuff in first, then letting the other mess fill in around it, if it has to.

calendar-deAs I turned the pages of the calendar to SEPTEMBER, I breathed a great sigh of relief.  I know how and when I can arrange my writing time, because my boys are in school.  Again, I say, Sing HALLELUJAH!!!

I know, I know, most of you are probably thinking that I’m a total Luddite and asking yourselves WHY I would keep a paper calendar rather than keeping everything online?  Online is so easy! And with several programs, everyone in the family can access it and add to it.  Then all you have to do is check it and see where everyone is supposed to be, right?

Uh-huh, yep, it is.  Except when you can’t get a cell signal on your phone and you need to schedule a doctor or hair appointment.  Or you can’t get into the program because their server is down.  Or they got hacked.  Or you did.  Or you’re so tired and the print is so tiny, you just give up and end up triple booking yourself.

*sigh*  I adore the CONCEPT of those online calendar systems, I really do.  But each one of those things has happened to me when I tried to switch to a paperless, computer driven calendar.  The fallout for missed meetings and appointments – not to mention the cost when they charge you for missing at the doctor’s! – sent me right back to the good old-fashioned calendar on my desk.

Nats ParkFrankly, if it gets into the book, it gets done.  If it doesn’t, well, it doesn’t.


My latest insert for the guts of the thing is a mish-mosh of different company’s products.  I have some things from the Franklin-Covey system.  The heart of it though is from a company called PlannerPads.com  I like their layout and it has a ton of places for planning and making sure my to-do-list is accessible.  I’ve also got some wonderful pages from a cool website called The Scattered Squirrel.  A friend turned me onto this website because it has meal planners.  It has calendar planning pages too, but I wanted it for meal planning.  I’m actually TRYING to be more organized with the whole food thing so that I can get more writing time.

It’s ALLLLLLL about the writing time, you know?

(And playoff baseball, too, of course.  That picture on the left is Nationals Stadium in DC.  Off in the blue haze is the Washington Monument.  Isn’t that cool?) DeadReconingfinal

And now that Fall is upon us, and planning for the Annual A(d)dams Family Halloween Party has begun in earnest, I need all the time I can get.  Thankfully, with school back in session, I can plan great swaths of time in my seat working on tremendously exciting stuff that I’m going to share with YOU, my darling Bandits and Bandit Buddies.  DEAD RECKONING, the second in the Faithful Defenders series is almost done. DEAD WRONG, the third book, is drafted.  I’ve begun the second SLIP TRAVELER novel, set in Savannah, GA.  Planning and plotting are underway for things for next
year.  Woohoo!  I feel the energy of Fall coming to my aid, I’m ready to rock and write and roll!

So what about you, friends?  Are you ready for Fall?  (Or in the case of our friends in Oz and other down-under places, are you ready for Spring and Summer?)

Do you keep a calendar?  Do you live by it, or is it just an afterthought?

Do you keep it on your computer/phone, or paper?

If you’reJeanne with wolf ears working in the corporate world, does your company keep a universal calendar on their server?  Something you each have to put your meetings on, and time in and out of the office?

I joyfully finished Nalini Singh’s latest – Shards of Hope – at the last day of the pool being open.  Now I have to wait for 2016 for the 15th Psy-Changling novel.  Yikes!  

What are you looking forward to this fall?  Which Author’s books are coming out that you’re just dying to read?

Happy Fall, y’all!!

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  • Jane says:

    Hello Jeanne,
    I’m so ready for fall, but I guess we’re getting another heatwave before the temps start to cool. You mentioning the Nats makes me excited about the playoffs and it looks like both NY teams will make it.

    • Jeanne Adams says:

      Hey Jane! How are you? Congrats on nabbing the wandering chookie! He loves the Big Apple though, so he’s probably glad its you!

      It’s amazing to think it’s fall, given that it’s going to be in the 90s again today. Grins. I know it’s coming though….just wish it would hurry up! Hahah!

      And yes, both Yankees and Mets are looking good this year! Mets got Youenes Cespedes in the outfield – what a player!! They came back and beat my Nats yesterday. Grrrr. But the Cubs crushed the Cards 9-0 last night so I’m happy.

  • Pipped at the post, Jane! Enjoy the GR for the day, but keep him away from the chocolate!

    The best part of school being back in for me is that everyone’s little “darlings” aren’t invading Walmart all day long and forcing me to fantasize about a bigger freezer and series of hooks on which to hang them.

    I need to invest in some of those calendars to keep me on deadline. Fortunately I have had the three whipcrackers to keep me moving on my next Christmas novella. I didn’t finish it on time, but it IS finished and the anthlogy, CHRISTMAS REVELS II will be up for pre order soon.

    Now, all I have to do is write the sequel to A PERFECTLY DREADFUL CHRISTMAS and get it out there by November because the novella in CHRISTMAS REVELS II is actually a sequel to the novel that follows A PERFECTLY DREADFUL CHRISTMAS.

    Okay, I think I just confused myself! I need a calendar AND a score card.

    • Jeanne Adams says:

      Hey Louisa! Had to LOL about the meat hooks. Bwahahahahah! There are so many reasons I love you, but that’s one of them. Grins.

      And yes, *crack, crack* The whip must be cracked! We’re all looking forward to your next brilliant, witty project.

      *crack, crack*

  • Ki says:

    Your son is only 15!? Gosh I must be a midget then. Anyways, I can’t wait for Autumn! It’s my favorite season and I love getting out the light jacket and boots. As for calendars , I used to keep a physical calendar but I haven’t had one in five years. But I do keep one on my phone because I need to k ow the days of the week and keep some important book schedules on hand. And as for books, there are lots I’m waiting for this fall! Lots of historical romances.

    • Jeanne Adams says:

      Hi Ki! I tried keeping it on my phone, but it just didn’t work. Sigh.

      As to Eldest, yeah, he just turned 15 in June, so he’s barely 15 and already that tall. OMGosh, the appetite…yeah.

      I’m with you on happy days ahead with boots and jackets. C’mon cool weather!!

  • Caren Crane says:

    Jeanne, I have the same problem with online calendars! I keep buying my old, reliable 8-1/2 x 11 Dayminder or whatever it’s called every year. The 15-month one has kept me organized (or what passes for it in my life) for 25 years! My youngest started her senior year of college a few weeks ago. I’m seeing the light at the end of the looooong parenting tunnel at last. Now I can’t use the kids as an excuse why I’m not writing anymore. :/

    At work, we all use Outlook calendars. You can look at other people’s calendars to help schedule meetings and whatnot. I like it, but it only helps when I’m in front of a computer. That’s why I love my spiral-bound paper calendar!

    As for reading, I am currently on a Loretta Chase binge. Re-reading the old and filling in all those I missed. Perfect for the rainy week we’re having in Hilton Head this week! Next week, back to work and the writing on my 4th Cross Springs novel!

    • Jeanne Adams says:

      *happy dancing* that the next Cross Springs novel is in the works! YAY!!!!

      Waving toward Hilton Head. I love that place. Hope, despite the rain, that you’re having big fun. And if you’ve got Loretta, you most likely are.

      Yeah…high school. Weird thing, high school. Eldest is a sophmore this year….EEK!!!

  • pjpuppymom says:

    I love calendars. I have a Carolina Girls photo calendar hanging in the kitchen (gotta support my favorite Gamecock dancer), a pocket calendar in my purse and (some) appointments on the Google calendar I use on my phone and computer. I have good intentions about losing the paper but I never seem to be able to follow through. 😉

    Fall is my favorite season and it’s all about college FOOTBALL! Happiness has returned to my Saturdays…and Thursday nights.

    August is the happy month for parents down here. Our kids have been back in school for almost a month.

    I’m looking forward to lots of books this fall but the one I’m most excited about is THE LEGEND OF LYON REDMOND, the long-awaited conclusion to Julie Anne Long’s Pennyroyal Green series.

    Jeanne, I can’t get over how grown up your boys are! Weren’t they just toddlers a couple years ago?

    • Jeanne Adams says:

      Hey PJ!! Yes, my boys were just boy a couple of months ago, it seems! Grins. Amazing how fast they grow. We started back to school on Aug 31, but I know some schools were back as early as Aug 15.

      And YES, Ma’am! on the College Footballllll!!! WOOHOOOO!!! Any kind of football, actually. Grins. LOVE ME SOME FOOTBALLLLLL!!! But you knew that.

      Had to LOL about losing the paper. I tried and tried, but after so many mishaps with it, I just resigned myself to paper.

  • catslady says:

    My kids are grown so the only thing that changes is that my bowling league starts up. Actually, I wish summer would last longer – we had a lot of rain the first few months. My daughter had a destination wedding in May in Disney but this Sunday is her celebration at a park for all their many friends and family. My mom just celebrated her 93rd birthday too. And we had another wedding to attend in NJ so took a day trip to NY. That’s more traveling than we’ve done in many, many years so a very nice summer. And I use paper to mark everything down.

    • Jeanne Adams says:

      Yay, Catslady! Another paper-calendar gal! Grins.

      Wow, you DID have a busy summer. Congrats to your daughter and your mom too. 93 is amazing!! I got to a couple of weddings this summer, one in Pittsburgh. Very fun!!

  • Duchesse, I love the wolf ears! Congrats on the return of school days. I can’t wait to read Dead Reckoning!

    Our calendar lives on the kitchen wall. It’s much less crowded now that only two of us are using, but I rely on it to keep track of us both.

    I’m looking forward to the next Caitlin Strong book from Jon Land, David Baldacci’s, upcoming Will Robie/Jessica Reel novel, and Grace Burrowes’ next historical. Those will all be in the next 4-6 weeks or so, I think.

    • Jeanne Adams says:

      Hey Nancy! Welcome back from DragonCon! I’m looking forward to your post with Trish on the wonders of the weird at DCon. Grins.

      Part of my plight with the computer calendar is keeping track of the kids. If I thought THEY would use a wall calendar, I’d be all over it…Has the Boy gone back to school? And did the little gal from up here ever contact him?

      I’m looking forward to Mercedes Lackey’s next one – out Oct 6 – and several others as well…

  • Sally Schmidt says:

    Oh wow, websites to check out for calendar stuff! Great post, thanks 🙂 When I was working I had the whole Day Timer/Day Planner/ Franklin Covey thing going on. Shortly before I retired I simplified since I didn’t have to keep track of both work and home tasks, but I still use a paper planner. I do use the COZI calendar online system because the reminders are great, but you are right,it’s not always accessible and if it’s not written down on that paper in front of me it doesn’t happen. My oldest daughter just moved home for health reasons and now I have even more to track.

    Even though going back to school doesn’t really have meaning for us now, we just finished a remodel so I feel like the new season has started and I can get to neglected projects and more reading.

    And weather-wise I wish Fall (and rain!) would come to CA. Thought it was finally cooling off but this week looking at temps up to 110 again.

  • Hi Jeanne –

    I live by my planner pad – what a marvelous invention. I have an old Daytimer calendar/address/phonebook thing, covered in a nice tapestry cover – but it’s not really used anymore. My phone’s contact list has all the numbers and addresses I need (and more) while my planner pad carries my daily to-do list. Love it.

  • Helen says:

    Hi Jeanne

    Oh I loved that post as yes things are starting to warm up over here but you know me I prefer the cooler weather LOL.

    As for calendars I use both paper and the one on the PC so as we don’t forget appointments nothing worse than missing one.

    And for me I am really wishing I had more hours in the day I am way behind on my reading and trying to catch up I have so many awesome books waiting to be read but just not enough hours in the day although a housework fairy would help a bit LOL

    Have Fun