So, as expected, it’s been a time of ups and downs lately. The surviving triplet is still in NICU and is on the countdown to coming home. (Yay!) But I’m still dealing with, and will be dealing with the fact that the other babies were lost. While optimism is the name of the game, it’s unrealistic not to expect bad days. And bad days (or weeks or months) means no motivation.
Ideally, I’d like to edit my demon novel before the babe comes home from the hospital, because (gasp!) I doubt I’ll suddenly develop more time after she arrives. But nothing is lighting the fire under me. So what did I do?
I called in my backup. I sat down with my writer’s group and my resident Angry Ginger (we’ll call her “Honey”) and said, “I need you to do this for me.” I told Honey that I’d send her two edited chapters by 9 PM every night. She didn’t need to read them but she needed to verify that I had finished them. If I missed my deadline, she was to call and yell at me. And she did! She used my full name, and soon I was sending three or four chapters a night. Honey can be very forceful. 😉
My writer’s group, the Interdimensional Wombats, are also following up on my demon novel progress. I have to present the clean pages at our meetings. But more than that, I threw down a jumbled list of deadlines and they quickly broke it into bite-sized pieces. “This is due first, so have it by next week. On Tuesday we’ll record this in the studio. Follow up on this by the time we see you next,” etc. Because honestly? At this point my mind is consumed with the everyday things. Thank you cards, getting my son off to his month of summer classes, planning with my husband so at least one of us gets to NICU every day, etc. Grocery shopping takes all of my mental prowess, so I have very little left over to organize other things. Writing is a joy (editing, not so much) but I can do it once I get started. I just need somebody to push me off the diving board. So thanks, my friends!
How do you work when you’re down, scattered, or just plain don’t want to?
Usually if I can’t work, it’s because I haven’t fed the muse in so long it’s slipped into a coma. Movies and books help, but I usually lack the motivation to watch those, too : P
Hugs hon. So glad you have such a support system!
When I get down, I give myself a time limit. Eat a few chocolate bars, then find the best short stories I can find. Once I am done – or the muse refreshed- I am eager to get started again.
Hi Natalie! It’s good to see you! I’ll agree with you: music and books can be so inspiring, but where do we find the time?
Shadow, chocolate and short stories sound wonderful. Tell me more about your time limit. Do you give yourself so long to take a break, or so long that you’re required to work? They both sound helpful. Also, I was checking out an online course on seed beading and I thought of you! 😀
Mercedes, you are a better woman than I am. I don’t know how I’d work with everything you have going on. That being said, when I am distracted from my work by pain, conflict or lethargy I just sit down and get SOMETHING done…anything so that I can say I keep the “juices flowing.” That helps me to get back to what I NEED to get done. It is all one step at a time, just don’t put too much on yourself at one time. Everything happens in its own time at its own pace.
Much love to you,
Tee hee hee…. Angry ginger…
Mad love, Mercedes. I don’t really know I’d work at all in that situation, no matter how I might like to tell myself I’d at least give it a try. ❤
since studying was such a pain for me, I found writing the amount of time I actually study as very helpful. Whenever I do ANYTHING I absolutely don’t want to, I usually time it. That way I can track my progress or lack of progress. 20 minutes of cleaning, or paperwriting, or beating by head against something I don’t understand is huge! but If I’ve moped (Mopped?- I like mopped ^_^) excuse me, if I’ve moped around for an hour trying to work and see that I’ve only done like 2 minutes, then that gives me motivation to make something, some small baby step in the right direction.
and It’s all about taking that first step. Once you’re there, the second is always a little easier.
Oh and I LOVE you!
I don’t know how you’re doing much of anything these days, to be honest. Good for you for pushing onward and not letting yourself be weighed down. Although you know, if you ever need someone to email who will be a sympathetic ear, you’re welcome to write to me. Not that I’ve been there, but I can always listen, no matter how down you are!
I’m so sorry!! When I go through difficult times I remember a brilliant piece of advice my cousin gave me after my grandmother died. I was worried that I wasn’t grieving like everyone else and she told me to let my mind and body do what they needed to do. She was right. In writing we will go through ups and downs. I always try to keep going but sometimes I just have to recognize that my output will be less during a difficult period and as long as I’m moving forward that’s okay.