Over the past year or so, I began using my blog as a sounding board, but it seems to me that I am just exploring my feelings and I can do that in my personal diary. So I am changing my blog’s platform to discuss things I am learning about writing a novel. Much of this will be personal learning, but I think a readership of other artistic people may find their own challenges addressed.
It is already the end of April and I am still stalled, but I have resolved to use this as a learning experience and devote most of my free time to writing. After some major reality checking about why it is taking me such a dreadfully long time to write this novel, I have learned a few things. First, I need to learn to say, “I’m working, please do not disturb me.” Or simply, “No.” I am semi-retired, after all, and I intended to finish my book last year. Second, I need to learn to push through those disturbances and go back to my writing. Third, I have not been thinking of my writing as a job.
My challenge is all the little unnecessary disturbances begin to feel like sabotage. If I don’t stick to my guns and insist on the time to write, the situation will never change. It’s the equivalent of doing the same thing repeatedly while expecting different results. There’s a reason for that statement. It’s absolutely true! So, while the interruptions are a challenge, I know my story, I know what’s supposed to happen, so I should not let the interruptions get to me. When left to my own time, I will write.
As to the last revelation, Thinking of my writing as a job is crucial to my success. If I don’t feel like this is a real job, then it becomes a little hobby I can put away in the closet while I focus on more important things. Not anymore! I write. I am a writer. This is my profession, my job. All too often we look at an activity as being a job only when we get paid. Well, if I don’t write, I don’t get paid. Simple.
These are my lessons for this week. I’m sure I will discover more as I move through the process to the finish line. Then it will be time to start on the next one. Next week, I attend a writer’s conference. I’m sure I’ll have more pearls of wisdom and revelations after that. I am looking forward to it.