I thought it was tough to find balance when I was on my own, but this week has given me a glimpse of what writers go through when they have husbands and families.
I was on vacation this week, and I spent it with the Boyfriend. Don’t get me wrong: It’s been great. But my writing productivity has gone way down.
When we were home together, he wanted to play. When I was here alone, I had time to write … but about the time I hit my stride, I had to stop to cook or answer the phone or do a load of laundry or run to the grocery store.
Anyway, I’m tipping my hat to you writers who juggle family responsibilities and still have time to create the stories I love to read. Maybe someday I’ll get better at doing the same.
My time away from the day job, fortunately, has not meant a vacation from writing.
I must say I haven’t gotten as much accomplished as I’d hoped: A couple thousand words written in editing mode and three rejections received from agents.
Still, at least I’ve been getting something done. That’s no small feat when I can’t seem to settle to any single project. Not one of my stories is demanding my full attention.
I’ve been doing some reading, too. As I’ve mentioned before, it seems that when I’m reading more, I’m writing less. I read Jennifer Crusie’s “Faking It” and now I’m zipping through Vicki Lewis Thompson’s “Chick with a Charm.” (It’s the sister story for the one I read last month, “Blonde with a Wand.”) The hero and heroine are great. Can’t wait to see their happy ending.
In fact, I’m about to take myself to breakfast, where I intend to finish the book. Then I’ll camp out at Starbucks for a few hours and hopefully get some more writing done.
I’m trying to go back in and add a more substantial conflict to the second Willow’s Grove story. My hero and heroine, Cassie and Dustin, meet at Brad and Erin’s wedding and dislike each other immediately. Then they find out they’re working together (he’s an FBI agent assigned to a kidnapping case and she’s the police reporter covering the story). I have the witty banter down cold, but they don’t have any deep-seated reason for their squabbles — yet.
I hope to rectify that situation soon. Her roller coaster moods remind him of his bipolar mother and she doesn’t want to get involved with someone who’s only in town for a short time. It should help me expand the story to the required length. Right now it’s at about 49,000 words, which means adding at least 6,000.
Friday will be a busy day for me. It’s more than just the last day of work before I get a week off: It’s payday, and that means I’ll have the entry fee for the contest I want to enter.
While I’m at the Post Office, I plan to ship off my taxes and my application for RWA PRO status. Might as well make the trip worthwhile.
But first, I must get busy making copies of my entry. Wish me luck!
Now that I’ve submitted a new batch of queries on “Operation Snag Mike Brad,” the goals I set to reach before my next NARWA meeting are complete.
That’s right: I finished the rough draft on Meg & Matt, wrote a synopsis for Kari & Damien and sent not two but FIVE queries on Brad & Erin. (You might remember the goal I set forth was two.)
Talk about being an overachiever — we don’t meet until mid-May! But when I’m on a roll, I want to keep up the momentum.
What’s next on my agenda? I’m preparing an entry for a contest with an April 10 deadline. Like the Golden Heart, it judges the first 50 or so pages plus synopsis (55 total) — and you get feedback from the judges. I’m going to enter my next GH entry to get tips that I can use to improve it so I have a better chance of finaling next year.
Aside from that, I’m a little torn. Do I go back to editing and expanding Cassie & Dustin’s story (next in line after Brad & Erin in my “Women of Willow’s Grove” series)? Work on finishing a first draft of Drew & Lainy’s story? Try rewrites on Meg & Matt? Do something to Kari & Damien?
I need to figure it out soon, because I have a week of vacation coming up. I want to use my time off work wisely.