Monday, April 09, 2012

It's 12:11 A.M.

The funny thing about not having anything to do or anywhere to go is that time becomes your friend.

But it can also become your enemy.

Though I haven't felt up to writing yet, I think it's just around the corner - possibly even tomorrow - that I will dig out the file for my novel and start getting reacquainted with my characters.

I have three weeks of recovery time looming ahead of me and I keep thinking to myself, "Oh, you have plenty o time to work on the novel."

Yet there is a danger in letting that time get away from me. I know because I've done it in the past.

Before I began working full-time, I stayed home with my kids, and had oodles and oodles of time to spare. But I hardly got any writing done.

Now that I have this nice three-week window of recovery time where I can't do anything physical and can't work, this is the ideal time to write on the novel (in between naps). I don't want to squander this time. (And yes, I will not push myself to do work when I don't feel like it...no worries on that score!).

So I think I need to set some realistic, but do-able goals for myself for the next three weeks. These include:

1. Reading through my notes and getting familiar with the plot and characters again
2. Study the craft. I am reading a book called Description by Monica Wood that is excellent.
3. Write with abandon.

Jane Austen's desk at her home in Bath
The third is perhaps the most important goal. For too long, I've sucked the joy out of my writing by allowing the internal editor to shove my writer persona out of the way when I pen first drafts. That has to stop. The editor can come out and play after I've written that first draft. But for now, I need to write with abandon and write for the sheer joy of it. I believe only then can my true writer emerge.

So that's the goals for the next three weeks. I have this time and I intend to use it.

22 comments:

  1. I need to write with abandon, too!

    So glad you're being realistic about your goals and taking your health into account. Wishing you a wonderful next three weeks with many naps!

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    1. I hope I'm being realistic - but right now, I feel like I could take another nap even though I woke up only a few hours ago! LOL

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  2. I think that's very sensible - it's really easy for time to just slip away but you have to look after yourself, too.

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    1. This is very true. First and most important is my health. I need to keep that uppermost in my mind!

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  3. I hope your recovery time is exactly what you need to get back into your writing. Good luck!

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  4. Great goals! That last one is a kicker; I am finding it with my current WIP, and it has made the writing, and the days in between the writing, so enjoyable, less stressful, really bringing to life why I do this. Wishing restful but invigorating days for you!

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    1. Oh, I'm so glad you've found it with your current WIP. A true blessing, indeed!

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  5. I totally relate to the squandering of time. We went on vacation where there were lots of times I could have broke out the laptop but didn't. Kind of regretting it now.

    Hope your recovery is going well and you feel good soon.

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    1. I always have good intentions to get work done when I go on vacation, but then, it IS vacation, so I usually never do. Don't regret it - the time you spent with your family is more important. :-)

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  6. It sounds like you have an excellent plan for your recovery time. Of course, the key is to stick to it and not get sucked into Internetlandia like we all do sometimes. I'm pulling for you and can't wait to read how it goes.

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    1. Hi Chad! Thanks for stopping by. :-) Yep, my problem right now is getting stuck surfing the Web! That's why I did not have wireless internet on my laptop until my surgery - my laptop was for WRITING ONLY. After my recovery, I may have to disconnect the Internet from it again!

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  7. That third goal is my problem right now, too. I want to be able to write something and love it, even more than I want to write for the sake of accomplishing something.

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  8. Glad you're getting some writing/recover time and I think reading through all your notes will be the perfect start.

    Thanks for your sweet words on my blog!
    Catherine Denton

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    1. The hardest part right now is the choice between a nap or looking through the notes. I am thinking a nap! ;-)

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  9. Good for you for realizing that the time, as ample as it seems, does slip by...and also for making concrete goals, and recapturing the joy of writing for writing's sake. Knock out that internal editor! ;-)

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    1. What's really got me excited to write now is the awesome advice in Monica Woods' book, DESCRIPTION. Such good, down-to-earn solutions that I can't wait to try out!

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  10. Oh boy, I sure know how time slips away from us. I hope you get reacquainted with your characters and the plot and kick that editor out of the way for now and have a great time with your writing. That's what it's all about. I can sure relate to so many things that you deal with. Take care, Melissa!

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    1. That internal editor can be such a bear! I hope I can kick it to the curb today.

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  11. I'm so glad the surgery went well and you are feeling relatively good!!

    It's great to use this time to write if you can, but part of resting is also resting from stress. If you need to just do nothing - make sure you get some of that in as well! :)

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    1. Very wise words, Heidi. While I feel physically pretty good, I know that my body has been through a great deal and it needs to rest for my emotional AND physical health. :-)

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