Waiting for "The Call"

“Honey, it’s always crap. Every book I write is crap. It’s my job to fix the crap afterwards,” according to Nora Roberts. Well, I've got it half right. Still working on the "fixing it" part. "Trust your characters to be complex enough and to have enough emotional baggage. Force them to make hard choices." Advice from Michelle Styles that might help!

Giving up or giving in? August 15, 2009

Filed under: Writing and Life — Autumn Macarthur @ 11:33 am
Tags: , ,
stress_reduction_kitI’m in a funny mood today, and not ha ha.
I don’t think I want to keep doing this. The chase for publication I mean, not writing.
It’s just too much work, and it takes all the fun out of writing. I know my writing is still a long way off being ready for acceptance by M&B, and even if it was, it won’t necessarily get any easier. It’s still all waits and rejections and needing to meet deadlines and having to write what the editors want to meet contracts. 
I feel like I have enough s**t in my life without adding pushing to get published as well.
All writing is for me at the moment is guilt.
I’m tired of getting home from work at 7.30, exhausted and brainfried, and feeling guilty that I want to relax, not jump into edits. I’m tired of spending my too short precious weekends feeling guilty about doing anything other than writing.
So I’m calling a time out. I don’t care if I don’t put anything in for the NWS, don’t mind not entering the Presents/Modern comp. I just want to try to get my life back, or some little bit of it anyway, rather than have nothing but work, or chasing an elusive and distant dream.
Maybe that makes me a wimp who just isn’t tough enough for the real world of writing. Maybe it makes me a dilettante who just wants to play at writing. Whatever. I don’t much care.
I’m hoping that in some perverse reverse-psychology way, I’ll do more writing this way. I need to get my joy in writing back, need it to be something I want to do again. Not just yet another pressure to perform I put on myself.
I get more than enough of that in my day job.
So today, I’m not going to sit at my laptop all afternoon. I’m going shopping. I want to wander round the shops. Look at shoes and clothes. Buy some books. Sit and indulge myself in the simple pleasure of losing myself in another writer’s created world and characters.
And not feel any guilt that I’m not spending that time on mine.

4 Responses to “Giving up or giving in?”

  1. Aw Hugs… But I know how you feel and sometimes I think we need to take time out to nurture ourselves. Follow your instinct!!!

  2. Shirlee Says:

    All writers feel that way sometimes. You’ll have to let me know if the reverse psychology actually works.

    Enjoy your break!

  3. Caroline Says:

    BIG HUGS! I’ve been feeling a bit like this too. August has been a busy month – with very little writing – and I have been feeling guilty about this. But like you – if the time isn’t right to write then so be it! I’ve given myself “permission” to take the whole of August off. (I have been enjoying myself blogging btw and have won some great books!) But saying that if I feel like writing then I will. So far I’ve managed to tidy up three chapters of a book and send it off to M&B. If they like it – then – I’ll panic and try and finish the edits for the rest of it! When we get published (see +ve thinking here!) then we can stress out more – after all we will (hopefully) be getting paid for it then. Like the joke goes – A woman dies and she’s at the gates of heaven. She’s shown around by St Peter. He shows her a room. 3 people are hard at work sitting at computers. The room is dark, dingy, and the people looked really stressed. “This is hell” says St Peter. Next he takes her to another room. Again the room is dark and dingy and has 3 people in it all looking stressed as they pound away at the computer. “This is heaven” says St Peter. “But it looks the same as hell” says the confused woman. “Ah yes,” says St Peter, “it is, but the difference is that these people here are published authors and they are getting paid.” Take care. Caroline x

  4. waitingforthecall Says:

    Thanks guys!

    I love that joke, Caroline. Fingers crossed you get a full request on your M&B submission.

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