The world continues its march straight towards the gates of the underworld, and it is getting very exhausting to keep trying to create magical things with your words and imagination. It might be even more important these days to have somewhere to escape in your mind. A place where at least all the fucked-up shit going on is of your own creation and it makes some kind of sense.
It’s always taken a great deal of effort for me to stay focused on work even under the best of circumstances, so with everything going on in the world lately plus whatever is going on in my own life, taking time to work on writing when I could be, say, disappearing from this universe into a great book or TV-show, that temptation is hard to resist. Maybe some of you can relate?
In these times when staying focused on creating something beautiful can feel like an extreme challenge, it’s important to get your priorities straight and remain true to your goals. The world may be bleak, but your dreams are bright, shining lights that will not be conquered by the madness that is our current reality. That’s what I keep telling myself, anyway. Now it’s time I start acting like it, too.
For a long time, I have juggled several things when it comes to writing. Even though I have mostly managed to put my WIP first, it has occasionally been forced to take the back seat because I wanted to keep putting new things up on this blog. Things that could get read now so that by the time Spiralling is actually finished, there might be a handful of people out there with an interest in my voice who might want to read it.
I’ve tried to achieve this through my online series and short stories. I truly loved working on the shorts and Valentine & Maxwell, even if I have failed spectacularly the last few weeks. I stopped working on everything extra during Camp NaNoWriMo, and barely managed to start up V&M again in August. But with everything else going on, even just that took a lot of time away from Spiralling Draft Two. Most days I had to choose – work on one but not the other.
There are probably many who benefit from working on multiple projects at once. I wanted to be one of them because it seemed efficient on many levels. But it’s time to face the fact that I’m not. When focusing on one specific task, I usually get it done. Often I even get it done well. Sure, I’m able to multi-task, but there’s a point where it just isn’t practical anymore. When instead of doing my best on several things at once, I end up doing barely average work on everything. I want my writing out there so someone might possibly know who I am and want to read Spiralling when it’s finished, but do you know the only way that will help? If I actually finish the damn novel.
I need to admit that in order to stick to my desired time table with Spiralling, it has got to be the only priority. That’s why I have made the tough decision to not start again with short stories or continue with Valentine & Maxwell until Draft Two is finished. This means that at least for the rest of 2017, I will be sticking only to blog posts and working on Draft Two. The only break I will take is for NaNoWriMo to work on the Perrinne Legacy 1.
There are a few options here on how to deal with this. I could cower in shame over the fact that I wasn’t able to do everything I wanted exactly when I wanted it. That would be so easy, considering it’s my default to feel guilty about everything. Another option is to accept my limitations and rejoice in the fact that being 100 % focused on my WIP will only serve to benefit it.
There is no shame in accepting what you can and cannot do. That’s what I would tell anyone else who decided to put everything else on the back-burner and aim their energy on the thing most important to them. So it’s what I’ll say to me.
When we’re living in a world filled with so much hypocrisy, hate and stupidity, I sure as hell don’t intend on adding to it – even if all I can do is not put those things on myself.
I hope you all manage to be proud of yourselves for everything, big or small, that you achieve each and every day.
It’s a hard time to remain dreamers these days. But even when the world is a nightmare, I say the best way to fight it is to keep right on dreaming.