The All-Night-Work-A-Thon: A Photo Documentary

7:00 P.M. – It begins.

7:00 P.M.
7:00 P.M.

Tonight my husband has to work (at home) from 7 P.M. to 3 A.M. I’ve decided to stay up too, both for moral support and to (hopefully) accomplish some of my own tasks. My goals for the All-Night-Work-A-Thon are:

  • Finish reading Extra Lives by Tom Bissell.
  • Finish reading (and taking notes on) the 2013 Children’s Writer’s & Illustrator’s Market.
  • Revise my short story “No Guarantees.”
  • Write 750 words of something. (Ideally, the words would fit somewhere in my novel, but since I might be writing them at two o’clock in the morning, I am going to allow them to venture wherever they want to go.)

I’ve got my coffee. Let’s do this!

8:15 P.M. – Slow and steady.

8:15 P.M.
8:15 P.M.

I’ve completed two run-throughs of my short story, first my own edit and one then using the comments a writing buddy made on the manuscript. I still have one more set of comments from a second writing friend, but I need to take a break from the story for awhile. Time to open up the old Writer’s Market.

9:45 P.M. – Things fall apart.

9:30 P.M.
9:45 P.M.

First, the hubby asked me to stop singing so loudly and to turn down my music. (But it was the Stone Roses’ “I Wanna Be Adored,” and I do, I really do.) Then Toby, sensing that I was taking an unscheduled Twitter break, jumped onto my lap and started knocking pens off my desk. I evicted him from my office and took a restroom break. On the way back to my room, I shut my long flowy skirt in the bathroom door and made an animal-like yelp when I was unexpectedly wrenched backwards. The hubby had to ask me to keep it down again.

Taking a break from the Writer’s Market (and from Twitter and from Toby) to get back to my story revisions. Hoping things get better.

Midnight – Dealing with transitions.

It is midnight. I’ve fed the cats, put the dog to bed, and washed my face. I’ve switched from coffee to orange juice and traded my dangerous flowy skirt for sweats and a Superman t-shirt. I’ve worked hard on my short story. I am happy with the first fifteen pages (yes, it’s a long short story), but I’m still struggling with the ending. I’m having trouble making the transition to the final scene a seamless one. I want the final scene to seem seamless. I seem to seek seamless scenes. I am also getting sleepy.

I will take another break from my short story to read Extra Lives. Maybe something in the chapter about BioWare’s RPG Mass Effect will help me conclude my story about a little girl and her great-grandmother. Probably not, but maybe.

2:40 A.M. – The end is near.

[Sadly, my midnight and 2:40 A.M. photos were accidentally deleted from my blog and my computer. 😦 Big oops.]

I read all but one chapter of Extra Lives. I started reading this book to better understand the main character of my YA novel, but instead it’s helped me better understand my husband (who shouts/screams/grunts at his computer screen on a nightly basis) and also myself. I have played all of maybe two of the games mentioned in this book, but reading about these games has made me remember (and miss) the ones I grew up with, like Bubble Bobble and Jump Man and Lode Runner. (Expect a blog post about my gaming days on a night when I’m not so zombie-like.) I’ll save the last chapter for tomorrow.

I didn’t finish the Writer’s Market either. I went through all the book publishers and agents, but there are a few more articles I want to read.

And I never got back to my short story. The last five pages are still aglow with highlighted areas of mediocrity.

Oh yeah, and this blog post is the only other thing I wrote tonight, and it’s just shy of 750 words.

In summation, I completed none of my goals.

But that’s ok.

In real life, things always take longer to finish than you think they will when you see them on a to-do list. I worked hard tonight. I worked a long time, and I accomplished a lot, although I didn’t fully accomplish anything. And now I am very tired. I think, in some ways, there is joy in having pages left for tomorrow. There is purpose in pages. Then again, I might just take tomorrow off.


(Oh, and in case you were wondering, my husband’s work went well too.)

Published by Carie Juettner

Carie Juettner is a former middle school teacher and the author of The Ghostly Tales of New England, The Ghostly Tales of Austin, and The Ghostly Tales of Burlington in the Spooky America series by Arcadia Publishing. Her poems and short stories have appeared in publications such as The Twin Bill, Nature Futures, and Daily Science Fiction. Carie lives in Richardson, Texas, with her husband and pets. She was born on Halloween, and her favorite color is purple.

5 thoughts on “The All-Night-Work-A-Thon: A Photo Documentary

  1. I thought you were supposed to last until 3! ha ha I’m sure you could have finished everything in those last 20 minutes ; )

    1. You’re right! Ha! I’m sure everything would’ve come together if I’d just persisted a little longer. Though, in reality, my husband’s work finished a little early and I was so tired I no longer trusted myself to make changes to my manuscript.

  2. This was fun; what an awesome, entertaining idea for a blog. I feel like I never fully accomplish anything either. You’re not alone. I LOVE Bubble Bobble and Mass Effect (although, admittedly, I have played a lot more of the first and watched a lot more of the second). Good work in making a dent in so many of your to-do list items though. That totally counts for something!

    1. You played Bubble Bobble? My cousin and I spent many happy hours playing that game! Although I have a hunch I’m older than you, so I’m not sure we were playing the same version. Ours was the original Nintendo one.

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