Starting a new job after a few months off have kept me from churning out the usual amount of pages I’d grown accustomed to for my novel this week. If I didn’t have to buy food or pay the bills, I’d probably still be tapping away at my keyboard, oblivious to the outside world, until emerging at the other end with a completed manuscript. There was a weird niggly feeling in the pit of my stomach and the back of my neck… and then it hit me today… it was guilt. My novel is like an abandoned lover, sulking in the corner neglected. I lavish attention on it every night for about an hour, scribing at least half a page to add to its girth – but it doesn’t seem enough.
I love my job, being a part of a great team, having that feeling of accomplishment, and taking part of something bigger than yourself at the end of each day – and if I could eliminate the need for sleep altogether and write all night, I’d be a happy woman. It got me wondering: how much time do I spend writing, at work, marketing… and have decided that May is going to be a month of monitoring just these things. Call in an experiment in seeing just what I use my time for – it could yield some scary results!
This decision was the best proactive solution I could come up with to alleviate the attention-hungry monster that is my novel. Better than trying to cram more time in somewhere – I wanted to take a serious look at what activities I could cull…without resorting to staying up later. So now I’m smiling again, not only about getting money filling the purse, but managing my time better. Granted my deadline for finishing ‘Smoulder’ has been pushed back considerably, but I’m happier for it.
It’s going to be a difficult exercise because I’m so passionate about writing, I’m frequently at home, shirking chores and social engagements to ‘just finish this chapter.’ There is never enough hours in the day… Guess I’ll have to bear with it until my writing is bringing in enough income to warrant becoming a full time novelist (squee!) So watch this space and see what conclusions my little project bring to light.
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