It has been a long time since I have written. I last left off pondering in my blog if I would take a position as the preschool program teacher at a daycare. I did start teaching, and it consumed me. The demand for care, love, planning, and problem-solving for the state of the classroom there was even more than I could have possibly imagined and feared.
I made it two months before I had to pull myself out. I will write about it someday. I have about a dozen paragraphs I did write that will likely never be seen. I concluded it is just too soon. Haha! I’m a bit traumatized and too negative about it all. Until I can look back with some humor and more unclouded eyes, I will not talk about it.
I will also say there is absolutely every reason in the world to greet a smile from someone who takes care of your children with at least a smile or a friendly hello. Heck. A thank you would be nice too.
Anyway, it has been a week since my last day after quitting. The week started rocky. I went through some doubts about my decision. I had many second thoughts and almost considered taking back my resignation.
But, something that has helped me this week is actually getting the chance to read some of my favorite blogs again. It has been such a breath of fresh air to sit down and read some posts. I am not nearly close to catching up, and I’m honestly suffering a little anxiety jumping back into social media when I have been away so long, but I have sure enjoyed and benefited from what I have read. I have found a great group of people where I can step away from your life, gain some perspective, refocus on what is important. Thank you, Sandy with Sunday Morning with Sandy, Ray with The Ray Journey, Catey at OliveJuice, Moving Forward, Mom on the Rocks, Weeds and Wild Flowers, What Just Happened?, Life with Charli, and My Reflections.
While teaching, I realized even more my desire to write. I really had no time to write, and I felt it. I have always enjoyed reading, but with blogging, I have learned how much I like to write. I feel writing is the combination of reading and creating in one. I love to do both of these things, though I rarely get to sit down to read books.
If you are a writer of any form, I highly recommend checking out Ray at her The Ray Journey blog. She has produced so much quality, helpful content for writers. This month of November, I have been taking the beginning steps to write a young adult fiction novel. That was my first step- to start writing. The second step is to shout it loudly and proudly.
I am going to declare and commit that I am writing, and I want to publish it by June 2020.
Reasons I never committed to writing and what has changed
Reason 1: I’m a MOTHER, and I have writer’s block, but not in the form you may think. We have all heard kids are cock blocks. The more I thought about it, sex and writing have a lot in common when it comes to the tale of attempting to do either. Kids are super writing blocks. Frustration is at the heart of either of these analogous tales.
My tale of writing while the kids are awake involves a super villainous toddler, hanging on me because his senses detect my personal productivity, and he will stop at no ends to smite that down. Or, the baby fell, woke up, pooped, or is trying to slap his own story on my appealing, clickety keyboard.
What I am saying is, reason number 1 for not writing is there is no good time to write except for at night when everyone is sleeping. The problem, or course, I am pretty tired.
Change 1: Being aware there is no good time to write will make me fight that much harder for it. Writing is a mind exercise. Like any exercise, I am finding writing needs a strategy of attack, routine, discipline, and the will to work through the challenging days.
Half the battle is to just sit down with the purpose to write. The rest of the battle, assuming you have succeeded in achieving a disruption-free environment, is doing the strenuous problem solving and creative stretches that writing entails. I have found though, like all exercise for me, once I sit down to write, it is not as bad as my mind made it out to be and I don’t want to stop.
I am participating in NaNoWriMo, which I learned about from Ray on her post Tips and Resources to Keep Your Blogging Routine While Doing NaNoWriMo 2019. Every day I have made sure to sit and write, and in doing this I have at least gotten a small tidbit to a couple pages a day. That is an achievement for me! I have modified the NaNoWriMo to not necessarily reach 50,000 words this month. It is great for me to just have a write session every day. I have had a session be only 10 mintues to a couple hours. With my situation of uninterrupted time being so precious, I try to just go as fast as I can. My progress has been huge. I did have some bits and pieces written over the year I have been mauling around my story, but I am up to 20 pages now. In Ray’s post, she called this method “word sprints” and this has been what works for me.
My husband has also said he would watch the kids some nights if I just wanted to get away. This is also huge. Let’s just say he does not push me out the door to leave him with the two kids with 100% enthusiasm. But, he made the offer! He has an exercise routine where he works out every other night while I am battling the baby to go down for bed at this time. There is no reason why not on some of his off-exercise nights, my husband could take on the job of putting the baby down while I go do my exercise/writing.
I AM MAKING TIME AND SPRINTING WITH IT.
Reason 2: I have never committed. I have never told my friends or family about my aspirations to write and be published though I have wanted to for some time. I think I have hinted about writing here, but never a full declaration. When I thought about why this might be the case, I realized it is a fear of a reaction. I feared that shrug and that- okay, yeah right. I then also realized, maybe this is my own reaction I am projecting on others. I fear failing, so I am not telling anyone.
Change 2: I have learned from Ray, I need to share this journey of writing. It will benefit me in many ways. Along with this post, I am going to start up some social media routes too, so I can join in the writing community of support and favor exchanges (hit me up if anyone is interested in editing, beta reading, reviews, … I will return the favor!), Also, in declaring my intentions to write, I will also commit myself.
For any of my friends, family, and the voice inside my head who may say in that doubtful tone- Sure you’re a writer, I will just have to silence it with succeeding. That is the only solution to that.
Reason 3: I am an individual of self-doubt and a nagging awareness of my shortcomings. I lack discipline and tend to have too many projects going on that nothing gets finished. I’m just being honest.
Change 3: It is harder said than done, but I am thinking positively. I am also surrounding myself with resources and deadlines. Self-publishing is easier than ever these days, but there are measures I know I can take to bring some success beyond just publishing.
I have mentioned Ray so many times already, but she has been a steady wealth of helpful tips and resources throughout my writing from my blogging to now my book writing. I cannot express how thankful I am to Ray for how much I have learned. There have been so many things I didn’t know I didn’t know. Ray has recently published, which I highly recommend to anyone, Your Ultimate Guide to a Powerful Book Launch. After reading through her guide, which comes with great timelines and checklists, some of my uncertainties can be replaced with action plans and purposeful tasks for me to check off. Though I am in the process of writing, it came to my attention from this guide there are many things I can be doing even now to prepare and build up to a successful launch. I have mentioned my weaknesses, and I am arming myself with research and actions to overcome.
Truthfully, my odds aren’t great. I am a mom doing my hardest in prioritizing my job as mom, which often means setting my goals and aspirations on the back burner. But, I am realizing, even with these things on the backburner, I can cook them up a bit. I am on the anxious side these days, I’m a math major, so not a writer by degree, I am a free-spirit with ADD. Also, from what I hear, the book industry is hard to break into. Right. The odds aren’t great.
My birthday is this month. With a fresh year, I would like to use it as the year I achieve my goal to publish a book. Deadlines are key, so my first deadline is to have a rough copy by January 31st, the end of the month where strong will at the beginning of a new year starts to die down. Mine should just be beginning. That gives me 83 days to get a rough draft sprinted out. This is my year in my life I would like to publish a book.
This blog will be my free space to be a mom and now also post some updates on my writing process. I will at some point have to promote writing, so sorry if you’re not into that.
I have decided there is no perfect time to write. The best books were not written though because the authors had the perfect time to write. Those authors had stories on their hearts and minds. We all have stories to share. We should not let a perception of some future failure stop us from even trying.
I have been rolling my story around in my mind. It could be great, but seeming that it was invisible up until now, it really couldn’t be that great now could it.
I AM WRITING; AND FOR THAT, I HAVE ALREADY SUCCEEDED.
Happy, NaNoWriMo to all those writing. My sincere best wishes, and please give me a shoutout if there is anything I can do to help in your process!! It would be an honor really to help.