Today was a tough writing day in that it almost didn’t happen. I’ve gotten back into that same old loop of going to bed way, way too late. Usually I’m up writing or blogging or messing around with Canva.com (link below) or paying bills. I look at the clock at 10:30, and think that surely I can get done whatever I want to get done before midnight so I can go to bed. I mean, I could drive to Cape Girardeau, MO and back in that amount of time. Or get 3/4 of the way to St. Louis. Or watch DUMBO and an episode of GALAVANT. Or write 1200 words. The possibilities seem endless.
But no matter what I do, I think I just hate to give up on the day because I seem to be unable to get myself to stop. My mind is always working on something, remembering something that could be done. Right now. (I think I’m hearing the strains of the enough song again.)
(There are times when I find myself writing late at night, wanting to get those last few words down, and my mind begins to dissolve. Writing in a semi-dream state can be transformational.Writing a story is essentially dreaming out loud, or on paper, or something like that. Except: If you’re writing a sentence and all of a sudden you have a mental image of lambs scampering over green grass, or a road melting into chocolate, or your high school principal coming into the school’s smoking area wearing a Vegas showgirl headdress instead of whatever is supposed to be happening on the page, you know you’ve pushed the limits of the writing/dream state too far. (Yes! We had a designated outdoor smoking area at our school in the late ’70s–how weird is that?))
So. Today there were appointments and lunch and the post office and Mom Taxi. Homeschool supervision later in the afternoon. Many, many emails. I lost my FitBit somewhere in the house, and spent time looking for it–then was frustrated because, of course, all those steps I spent searching for it didn’t count. And then I thought I’d take a selfie (okay, I had to take 12 to get it right–I’m no Kardashian) to show that I was ready to do the Authors on the Air podcast with Pam Stack. But forgot to post it. (Pam is an amazing interviewer. She loves books and storytelling and authors, and it really shows. We laughed a lot. Give it a listen here if you’re commuting or working out or cleaning the garage. The podcast was to be at 8:00, and it got to be 5:15 and I had dinner to fix, and not a word written. I decided that the situation was unacceptable.
Dearest Reader, I wrote. I wrote 1007 words in 66 minutes. Not a record by any means, but I showed up. Then I went on with my evening.
Sometimes you just have to show up and tell yourself it’s time to commit. To get it done. I read over it, and it’s not half bad. It has a lot of energy and much of it surprised me, which is a Very Good Thing. I’m a huge proponent of the notion that the quality of your writing will be the same whether you write quickly or linger over your work. (Here’s my piece at The Kill Zone Blog on writing 10,000 words in a day. It can be done. Promise.)
I want to do better tomorrow. I’d like to be on a regular schedule. A carefully prioritized schedule that will see me get 3,000 words instead of just 1,000. Still, I got the job done today, and moved forward. I think we can call that enough, yes?
Here’s the selfie. I take them rarely, so I didn’t want it to go to waste. 😊
Link to Canva.com, my design playground.
January 4 Words
Journal: 380 words
Long fiction: 1007 words
Short fiction: 0
Non-fiction: 0 words
Blogging: 637 words
Exercise: 23 minutes treadmill