Friday, May 29, 2009

Balls falling All Around Me

*NINA PIERCE slides onto blog completely out of breath*

Sorry I'm late. :( My life is totally out of control. It's driving me insane. I just celebrated Beautiful Girl's college graduation. Now I'm rolling into prom week for Little Boy Blue (because his girlfriend goes to a different school = 2 proms) and then there's the company and celebration of his high school graduation. *sigh* I feel like I keep moving yet it seems like nothing is getting done around me. Of course this has to do with the fact that my "to do" list is the length of Stretch-Armstrong's arm and my energy level is somewhere at the bottom of the ocean. Yeah, I'm a little overwhelmed.

But I'm not here for sympathy. Because I'm no different than all authors. It doesn't matter if you write fulltime or if you work at a day job, juggle kids or an aging parent, we all need to carve out sacred time to write whether it's late at night or early in the morning when no one else is around. There are excuses we can all make that pull us from the keyboard and keep us from finishing our books. Besides our families, there is the pull of the internet, whether it's answering emails, social media updates, or marketing through live chats or loops. It's a lot. And sometimes juggling it all is a tad overwhelming.

But successful authors all say the same thing ... "write every day". It's a habit that becomes ingrained and keeps the words flowing. I know this. But, ummmm, I haven't figured out how to do that yet, but I'm working on it.

Through my local chapter of RWA I have joined a goal loop. Our goal is only 100 words a day. No, it's not much, but I refuse to go to bed until it's done. Of course once I start, I get much more than 100 words on the page. When I set a higher word count I often was too discouraged at the end of the day knowing I couldn't meet my goals that I wouldn't even open my WIP. Now, 100 words ... one paragraph ... isn't overwhelming and I open that manuscript and once the words start they just keep flowing. Of course paragraphs add up to pages and pages to chapters and chapters to a full story. And before I know it, I'm subbing a story to my editor.

I'm going to admit that I did take the month of May off from writing. For me, it's necessary due to health issues. But May ends tomorrow. And I'm jumping right back into my goals and writing every day. Being accountable to others works for me.

I'm curious, how do you handle the crazy times in your life and still juggle a writing schedule?


jean hart stewart said...

Hey, Nina, you've got the right idea. Just keep on going. I just wish I knew with all the time I spend in promoting which works and which doesn't so I can narrow it down. Til then I just juggle.
My husband fell yesterday and I couldn't write til late but I wrote. Jean

Amber Skyze said...

Aahhh, the joys of motherhood. I'm in the same boat, Nina. I struggled all through May, but I'm jumping right back into the water June 1st.
Some of us at my local chapter have a goal loop and I feel terrible when I can't post *something*
Good luck with your writing.

Nina Pierce said...

Jean - sorry to hear about hubby. Hope he's doing better. And congrats to you for still finding time/energy to write.

Amber - I can't imagine trying to find writing time with little ones. The young adult variety understand, but still take up a lot of time.

Julia Barrett said...

Tear my hair out. Wish I used drugs.

Anny Cook said...

You mean we're supposed to juggle all that stuff and still write?

Actually, I take time out for the stressful stuff and read instead of writing. Reading is something writers neglect. So when I know it's gonna be crazy, instead of fretting about writing, I read.

Then when I get back to writing, I can start over fresh.

One thing I do that a lot of writers don't do... I read MY books. It's amazing how much we forget about our own writing. I read them and am struck by my own ideas, word choices, dialogue. It reminds me that I AM a good writer.