ROW80: Worst-Case Planning

I didn’t even manage to make a final post for the final check-in last round; I’ll use “being in France with only occasional Internet” for my excuse reason. At any rate, trip preparations, my mind being elsewhere, and last-minute things I had to do around the house prevented me from making much progress, so my report would have been pretty much the same as the one prior.

But it’s a new round, time for new goals, and a fresh start! I’m having trouble getting back into the swing of things, even though I was only gone a week and a half, so I’m going to start out easy. In the last round, I also learned (again) that I need to limit my goals to things that are 100% in my control. My two beta readers still have Hangar 18, and I don’t want to rush them, so I’ll make that goal conditional.


I’m also adding something new, and not writing-related; I guess you could call it worst case planning. My parents are 70 and pushing-70, and my husband’s been after me for years to find out where they keep their personal papers, powers of attorney, health care wishes, etc. in the event that something happens to them and someone needs to make decisions. It’s not a pleasant topic and one that no one wants to discuss, so I keep meaning to do it if something leads in to it, but that time’s never come.

Then it occurred to me that my husband and I need to have this stuff collected together in case something happens to us. Thing is, it’s even more certain than taxes, will happen to everyone eventually, and no one knows when. So I found a book that looked like a good guide to organizing all this info and walks you through doing a little bit at a time. Baby steps! So completing those exercises will be my goal this quarter, and if I like it, I’ll suggest it to my parents when I hand my information to them.

Here are my goals for the quarter overall:

  • Work through Lesson 18 of How to Think Sideways
  • Release Times Two (combined ebook of Time’s Enemy and Time’s Fugitive)
  • Complete Saturn Society short story for holiday anthology I’m hoping to participate in – kind of scary because I haven’t written short fiction since freshman year of college, and that wasn’t very good
  • Complete Get It Together exercises and data gathering
  • Three interval workouts and two shorter workouts per week
  • Work back into tracking exercise and consumption
  • BONUS: Release Hangar 18: Legacy (if I get it back from the beta readers sometime this month, and depending on edits needed)
  • BONUS: Plot out and begin writing first book in new series

And here’s what I’ll do this week to work toward them:

  • Research online for short story
  • Come up with synopsis sentence for short story
  • Review How to Think Sideways exercises for ideas to work in to short story
  • Complete Get It Together Chapter 3 & 4 exercises (the authors suggest doing 1 & 2 last)
  • Three interval workouts and two shorter workouts

What are your plans for the rest of summer, whether or not you’re doing ROW80? Have you collected together “life plans” and info for your family?

15 Responses to \

  1. I know what you mean about trying to get caught up after a vacation. My house is a mess and I’m still going through the mail. So of course, I’m on my computer going through blogs. Much more fun, anyway!

    As for the summer, the husband and I have a weekend trip to Pittsburgh later this month (we’re going to tour Heinz Field) and then the daughter and I will be going to Atlanta the end of next month for Dragon*Con. Other than that (and the occasional Dragon game), no definitive plans. Except, maybe, job hunting. UGH!

  2. I prepared a personal directive some time ago. but I need to update my will and I need to put my papers in order for my executor and kids. good plan, Jennette. thanks a bunch

    by the way I’m on book two of the Saturn series. But I haven’t started it – if it’s as good as book 1 I know I wont’ get anything else done and I have big writing plans for this week.

  3. I like how you give your big goals and then break them down for the week. I think France is a great reason for not checking in. I’d like to not check in for that reason, too! 🙂

    Best wishes for a great round, Jennette!

  4. Those look like some good goals. Mine are fairly lofty (write a lot, read a lot, etc.) but I figured I might as well aim high so at least I get a lot done even if I fall short. Good luck!

  5. Stacy – glad I’m not alone! I’m not telling my husband about your upcoming weekend trip – he’d be sooooo jealous! I might have to do something like that for a gift for him, maybe next year. Good luck on the job hunt!

    Louise, thanks so much! That’s the best compliment – hearing that someone lost sleep or got nothing done because of my book! Hope you enjoy it when you get to it!

    Julie, thanks! I figured it was a good excuse. 🙂

    Alana – totally agree – if my goals are too easy, I slack off. Thanks for stopping by, and good luck on your goals!

  6. Thanks, Prudence and Juliana!

    LOL Nigel! My problem is I do tend to do things by halves! So hopefully this will kick me into gear. Thanks for your interest in my upcoming book!

  7. Nice well-rounded goals, Jennette. I hear you on the personal papers. The older my kids have become the more I’ve come to realize a need to have everything in a neat little packet in case of a “worst case scenario”. Last year I had to battle through my parents resistance to giving up this information, being from the depression era they have carried a fair amount of financial paranoia with them throughout life. In the end, they finally relented and we were able to put them in a better overall position as a result. All the best for the coming week and round, I know you’ll do great 🙂

    By the way, I may take you up on the advice offer for my blog once I get to the assembly phase. Appreciate it!

  8. Jennette, you’re amazing! My head is swimming as I read everything you’re balancing! I think I need to order Get it Together so I can get my life together!

  9. Bon Jour Jennette!

    I was wondering what happened to My Town Mondays. But we’ll let you slide this time. A week and a half in France sounds like a good enough excuse to me. Great goals! And let me know what you think of the book. I can only tell you what a nightmare we had when my husband’s parents died within one year of each other. It was a mess. Nothing was organized and because they insisted on being independent, they would not let us help. Papers were everywhere. And that’s the one thing that we noticed when our parents got older. Independence is like that last string they feel they can hold onto since their life and health they may not be able to control. So may the force be with you Jennette! Oui, Oui!!! 🙂

  10. Hi Jennette! You have a great set of goals for this round. It looks like you’re juggling a lot so nice idea to break them down into weekly accomplishments! I’m doing that as well this round and have seen quite a few other ROWers that are trying it. Good luck with the parents. Even though it’s a tough subject, it’s definitely much better to approach it now than have all the surprises later. Have a great week!

  11. Thanks, Gene! Good luck with your blog move, and do feel free to ask questions!

    Maria, LOL my head’s swimming, too – but if I don’t aim high, then I won’t accomplish much. Thanks for stopping by!

    Karen, it’s good to know someone’s enjoying MTM! Sometimes I fear I’m limiting my audience. But no worries, it will be back next week. Thanks!

    Karen, breaking my goals down into small chunks is vital, or else they’d be overwhelming. Thanks for stopping by, and good luck with yours!

  12. Pingback: ROW80: Great Week! | Jennette Marie Powell