If you don’t say no, you have to dig in

I couldn’t sleep most of last night thinking about the work I haven’t gotten done.  It was such a huge mistake to say yes to two Toastmaster articles, one Azizah article, one Islamic Horizons article and one Chronicle article all during roughly the same two-month period.  It can be done, but if one significant thing happens everything falls to pieces, it seems.  While I was at Goucher and planned to work, the computer I was using in the school library ate the work I did there, then my sister-in-law died, necessitating me leaving school early and flying out to California.  Then I spent five days at the SPJ conference, where I thought I would have access to a computer either in the hotel where I stayed or the where the conference was, but the only computer available was like 40 cents a minute to use.  Never having replaced the laptop that drank my coffee, I spent those five days getting nothing done.  And then the procrastination sets in.  And then the panic sets in.  And now I’m learning the rookie’s lesson that even if the editor accepts something way past the deadline, that project doesn’t necessarily end when you turn it in.  The edits on the Toastmaster article continue to come in – more than I got on the previous two I wrote for them.  So it’s kind of – not quite, but kind of – like they’re not done.  Today I will finish the last Toastmaster article and then wrap up the Islamic Horizons article as quickly as I can.  Now I don’t know if I should make the second formal pitch to the Chronicle as I planned.  I need to start writing for school, and reporting for school, and frankly I am so looking forward to having the time and freedom to do that.

And now I’m president of three clubs/organizations: Boeing Toastmasters, the new Speakers R Us Toastmasters and the Houston Pro chapter of the SPJ.  I want to be able to do those things.

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