Good morning! So, I’m aware that I haven’t been around much lately, and I’ve hinted at reasons why, but here are some more in-depth reasons. And, me being me, I shall beg apologies.
Lately, I’ve been struggling with trying to get together Volume 3 so that it can be ready to publish well before the Realm Makers conference in mid-July. The in-depth reason is two-fold. One: As I was starting to edit, I discovered a massive plot hole about 16% of the way in, and my response was thusly:
Yes, I’m being quite honest. Sadly.
Anyway, after eating some ice cream and watching some Grey’s Anatomy, I got my big-girl pants on and began to tackle Volume 3 — the “final” draft — from the start, as if it were just another rewrite. Which is what it has become. And, guess what? I’m actually enjoying it again.
So, here I am, with a very set deadline breathing down my neck, and I am simply writing as much as I can — creatively, not time-wise — every day. And, thanks to my family and other things needing some of my time, there have been days when I get about 4 paragraphs down before that spark has slipped away for a bit. But all of this is okay. It really is, I’m truly not being snarky. There was a lot of stuff in my notes that I wasn’t going to use until the next book in the series — after already bumping it from Volume 2 — but I’m including it now, and it’s making me pretty excited for readers’ reactions. And that is all good.
Two: I’m feeling my creative spark get worn out rather quickly these days. I need to seriously recharge it with more movies and reading and music (which I often set aside for periods while editing). Last night I chose not to go online, not to read, in favor of watching Thor: Ragnarok, which was an excellent decision.
The other in-depth reasons I’m not making bullet-train progress on my impending release are: my health, technology issues, and broadening my horizons.
My health is doing pretty well these days (much better than I was a few months ago), but so far the medication I’m trying for the endometriosis isn’t really working, so I still have to put up with some fatigue and lack of appetite or nausea. It means there are times when I literally don’t have the energy to think comprehensively about my plot or adjectives or phrasing. And there’s not much I can do about that at the moment, except take it with a grain of salt and keep going later.
Until very recently, we were down to one computer in my house, and it was getting ridiculous, since there were 3 of us trying to use it pretty much all the time. So, we got a new, additional computer. Then — the original computer died. And it has not been repaired yet, since the shop we brought it to is, for no apparent reason, dragging its feet and not communicating about what’s taking so long. So, we are, at present, still dealing with up to 3 people attempting to use one computer. I made it clear from the start, when I’m working on getting a new release ready, I need to have first crack at all things PC and internet-related (I regularly forget to look things up during the drafting process, and then remember while editing that I didn’t fact-check a certain reference or the spelling of a last name). But sometimes I get major pushback about this (it seems the words “deadline” and “conference” don’t have the same meaning to people who aren’t me). Anyway, this is another in-depth reason (I’m going to patent that phrase) that this whole editing thing is dragging a bit.
And then there are the additional activities I’m involving myself in at the local library. Is this absolutely necessary? No, and you’d think an indie author, a parent, an autist, already strapped for time wouldn’t consider them twice. However. In taking stock of my sales this winter (another brutally honest moment here), I saw that it would be helpful if I could expand my reach as an author. So I went to the library to look at the monthly calendar and get an idea for what networking was possible (without being annoying). I found there’s a writer’s group that meets every month, and people that belong to it have been asking the librarians questions about self-publishing. So it occurred to me that this might be a good place to show my face on a regular basis. *hides under bed and prays for strength to socialize*
Plus, I’d already let myself get roped into (okay, not really — I didn’t actually fight against it) the adult book club, which is still good because I’ve found I really only read one type of book anymore, and that can be stifling for the creative soul. Going out of my comfort zone to try new genres and styles will probably be very good for me.
On top of all this, the end of the school year is approaching, and that means I will have very little time in June for anything other than routine notification-checking and blog-posting. Besides, I need to have Volume 3 finished for a) Realm Makers, duh, b) so I can work more on How To Be A Savage, and c) I promised White Fang we’d start on our joint Super Secret Project this summer. And there’s a writer’s conference much closer to my home that I want to attend the week after RM, so it’d be nice to have more WIP stuff to bring to that as well.
All of these factors combined mean that, although in the past I’ve hated to do it and often felt guilty, I know that I have to disappear for short periods right now. I’m not officially going on hiatus (I’ve tried that before and failed miserably), but I won’t beat myself up if it’s been a whole week since I posted anything new on the blog, or if my tweets are limited to a quip by White Fang every 24 hours. We’ll all have to deal.
No one is bugging me or complaining that I’m not around, and for that, I thank everyone. This writer’s life isn’t always sparkles and fun-shine. It requires serious strapping yourself down to work and quit fooling around on social media or with rearranging your closet more than some of us want to admit.
Anyway, please do continue to visit my archives, and browse my tweets and Goodreads reviews. And I swear I shall soon have bigger news about the results of all my current endeavors.