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Pulling myself together

December 14, 2009

It’s amazing how real life can get in the way of writing.  More astounding is when real life gets in the way of real life that was already interfering with my writing.

Case and point: the bout of illness that has struck my house like the plague.  I got sick and got behind grading papers.  My wife got sick and I couldn’t catch up grading papers.  I got sick again and got way behind grading papers.  Through all this, there was no time for writing.  Heck, I had trouble finding time for little things like sleeping and eating and pooping (yep, I said it).  What little I did manage to write was always trite, cliche, and totally directionless because I couldn’t find time to think, to plan.  Bottom line: no production in two months.  None worth keeping, anyway.

Maybe that’s not such a bad thing.  I hit slumps periodically, often longer than a couple months.  There was one year where I only finished one story (but tinkered on all my half-baked novels).  One.  I don’t even recall which story it was.  But I came back from that stronger than I had been when I slumped.  Maybe I’m in for another of those rebounds.  Maybe.

The family seems to be on the mend, myself included, and the papers are almost caught up, just in time for the end of the fall semester.  I already did Christmas (so to speak) with my parents when they came to town for my daughter’s birthday, so that’s one Christmas distraction I can avoid.  There are always others, but it looks like I can finagle some quality writing time during this semester break.  I’ll be scurrying like a rat on the Titanic for the rest of the week while finals are going on, but at least there is light at the end of the tunnel.  Time for a deep breath and a system reset.  Time to be a writer again.

I suspect I’m not the only part-time writer, full-time flunky that gets in these jams.  They’re natural.  Stressful situations are good for a writer.  I hope to use mine, build on it, make my stories deliver the kind of I-can’t-escape-the-vortex stress that I’ve been battling.  Ironic that I need that stress to settle before I can create it in fiction.  It shouldn’t be that way, I should be able to write through the hurricane.  I’m not that organized…yet.  It will come.  It will take a lot of work, but I’ll get there.  Right now, writing is my hobby and hobbies have to take a back seat to jobs that bring home pork products.  I need to be a better teacher in order to be a better writer.  No, that’s not true.  I need to be a more productive teacher in order to be a more productive writer.  Production comes from organization, not chaos.

I simply have to get my $#!+ together.


One Comment leave one →
  1. December 15, 2009 5:15 am

    glad to hear things are calming down. have a good holidays! you can always join the rest of us at the WotF Q1 wire 🙂 There’s still time!

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