It’s nearly midday and I’m sitting at my computer, still in my pyjamas, thinking about that run I’ve been putting off since I waved everyone goodbye this morning.
Maybe I’m prolonging the procrastination, but I tell myself: quickly check your emails, scroll the through WordPress Reader (which is similar to a Facebook newsfeed), then no more excuses. Time to drag on the tracky dacks and wheeze my way around the park.
Then Bang! Out of the blue, half way through the Reader, I missed my blog. That’s never happened before. I enjoy blogging, but I don’t crave it. And after giving myself permission to post infrequently, it surprised me to feel that way. It’s usually enough to catch up on what everyone else is doing, before retreating back into my off-line world of words.
But today for some reason, I felt like sharing how my writing’s going. It’s been a while.
A few months ago, I wrote about not setting any writing goals this year. Instead, my focus has been on enjoying the writing process. Given there are only thirty-eight days until the year reaches it’s midway point, it’s a good a time as any to assess whether my strategy is working.
I have to say, it is! Without the self-induced pressure, I’m able to concentrate on my book – scene by scene. Beta readers are helping guide my story with their insightful questions, and I’ve embraced being a slow writer. All that matters is that I try most days to connect with my novel in some way. It draws me back to the computer. It’s something I look forward to. Marathon writing sessions, fact checking with Google, or hanging out at the State Library. It all counts.
Interpret the mantra, ‘A writer writes, no matter what,’ very loosely.
Writers are ‘writing’ even while they’re unpacking the dishwasher between paragraphs, or walking around the block when the perfect solution to a plot hole is playing hide-and-seek with their brain. Heck. Writers are still writing when they read to their kids at night, or flip through a glossy magazine at the local cafe.
My novel has taken a completely different turn, but I hope to weave the original scenes in somehow. Interesting characters have appeared, demanding to be written, and there’s a depth that wasn’t there before. I have no idea what my word count is, but the story feels right. I think I’ve finally found a writing process that works for me – but that’s a post for another day.
‘Life in general’ is mellow. Most days are calm and considered. It’s a nice place to be after the events which led me to write in the first place.
I’ve found a balanced approach to social media that fits my life (balanced more in my favour than the screen’s), and I’m still riding the wave of a ‘travel high’. We returned from a Spain a few weeks ago. What a fabulous country. And the food – divine! (That reminds me – I should probably head out on my run soon). My spare time at the moment is devoted to my all-time favourite hobby – making DVDs from the footage I took during the trip. This all started when our babies were born a long way from ‘home’, just before Skype and social media took off. DVDs of first steps, and first words, and snippets of the everyday were sent home to grandparents. At the time, it was all about the present. I had no idea of the precious gift I was giving my future self and family. A lifetime of moments captured – with killer soundtracks and funny, written anecdotes adding to the enjoyment. A holiday is no longer complete without the blockbuster movies that follow.
My creative bucket is well and truly filled at the moment. I hope yours is too.
- Isn’t Mother Nature amazing? I took the image which appears at the top of the post in San Sebastian, April 2018.