Summer is here for all those living north of the equator. Vacations are being planned and executed with delight. At least some people are doing that. For me, it is a time for making pronouncements and constancies with the things I want to do with my life–in particular, my writing.
Are you thinking I am half a year too late? True, most people make their resolutions at the beginning of the year. What I am doing, I would not even call resolutions really because I connect the term to the word promise. I am not sure why I make this link between the two words but I do nevertheless. I refuse to promise myself something that has so much time to get fouled up in some way.
The word pronouncements does not hit me the same way in spite of the fact that it means the same thing as resolutions does. Instead, I hook it to terms like assessment and perspective. The objective is not written in stone. It is changeable. It can be altered to fit circumstances that arise.
Constancy is what I will be shooting for, which has been my failure for about eight months now. Something has always come up to disrupt my writing plans. Most of it has been unavoidable but I must confess there were incidences when I made the conscious decision to walk away from the desk when I could have stayed put.
A couple of weeks ago I read a blog post at Fiction University, Why You Shouldn’t Write Every Day by Janice Hardy. This article probably would not apply to writers who have hard fast deadlines but it did seem to speak directly to me. It was the first question she asked that crashed into my head like a ton of bricks.
What are you comfortable with?
It took me several contemplative sessions to come up with a conceivable answer to this question.
- Writing Every Day: Truth is I am in the habit of writing every day. Regardless, this does not mean I am toiling away on my WiP. I do try but this does not mean I get anywhere with it. In fact, lately, I have been in such a slump that I feel pathetic. A clear sign telling me I must do something about it. My solution: work on my project[s] every other day. This would include stories I have completed but need to revise. This strategy might help me form ideas to get me out of the ruts I sometimes find my writing in.
- Scheduling of Sessions: I had been scheduling around my husband’s work hours so I was entirely alone when I wrote. I had set it up so there was little room, whatsoever, for him to walk in on a writing session. I need to get over this fear of someone looking over my shoulder so I can write when my muse is at its peak. I need to learn how to block out more of what is just out of my private space. A writing buddy of mine [Hi Shari] suggested I loosen up and get out of the frame of organization a little. I know she is right but implementing this idea is against so much of what my norm is.
- Perpetual Inducement: This past spring my motivation began to be deficient. I end up gazing out the window hoping something will catch my eye out there instead of focusing on the work I sincerely want to finish. Yet, how can I be sincere about this venture if I am staring out the window? It is a paradox. It is also irritating and disquieting to me. I need to develop a routine so my motivation is at its crest when I require it.
- Audacity: I am a perfectionist to the utmost. As a result, I have become timid, hesitant, and ridiculously unsure. One way or another, I must become that bull in the china shop again and allow the chaos. I can fix that later.
All of this sounds good but to apply these four aspects into my daily life may be a whole other matter. Finding the blocks of time that will be best for my WiPs and getting up the courage is probably going to be the most taxing. I, the person, has changed over the years so my preferences have changed even though I do not want to concede to them. I must stop giving myself excuses and just get down to work.
Have you had to acknowledge a facet about yourself that probably should be changed or, at least, adjusted but have felt to tug of ignoring it as it slips into your life day after day? If so, what did you do to get pass it?
“This is the real secret of life — to be completely engaged with what you are doing in the here and now. And instead of calling it work, realize it is play.”
― Alan W. Watts