I restarted my “no more zero word days” challenge on Thursday and I thought I’d let you know how it’s going. In case you care. You probably don’t. But I do, so there. ;)
If it hadn’t been for the “no more zero word days” rule, I’m telling you now that Fri., Sun., and Mon. all would have been zero word days. This just goes to prove exactly how big the getting started barrier is for me. If I can get started, I can usually accomplish something. I mean, 631 words on Sun. and I honestly had thought I was going to be lucky to push out the 50 words I’ve decided is the bare minimum.
Today I want more. I’m still showing a lack of respect for my writing time and this post again proves it. It’s 10:30 and I should have started an hour and a half ago. I’m short of sleep. Too much reading last night.
This morning’s late start can also be blamed on reading. I’ve been reading more of Garden of Lies. Unfortunately, since I started reading that one, I’ve also read two novellas, two novella length fan fiction stories, a couple of short stories, and one novel length fan fiction story that I wrote but never quite finished. That one needs a few scenes between the late middle and ending that I did write to finish it off, but I’ve been working on it since 200x and I still don’t know if I’m ready to finish it. I’m really not sure when I started it, but it was in the early 2000s sometime and I don’t have backups that old anymore to give me a better range of dates. I made some major progress on it in 2011, and then again in 2013. In between is the time during which I quit writing all fiction for a year. The big D kept me too distracted and I had absolutely no urge to write fiction during that long year.
I’ve always thought it was fitting that I started writing again almost one year later exactly. May 2011 to May 2012. I picked the habit back up quickly, dusted off a fan fiction story I had finished the very same day I realized I was going to have to get a divorce, and I read through it and realized it was already done. Nothing to do but publish to a fan fiction archive. Then I wrote five more stories.
That was about the time I first heard about KDP so then I wrote a short story just to see if I would still enjoy writing original fiction. Then I wrote another, longer book, that became my first published book. Then I wrote and published another short story and started another novel.
Then I quit my job to write full time. That was four months later. :D
I often feel indecisive and incapable of following through, but when I’m being more objective, I can look at my life and see that there are plenty of examples that support a more nuanced view. I’m indecisive when I don’t know what I want, and I have trouble following through when I’m quietly conflicted about something, even if I haven’t realized what that conflict is yet.
My writing brings forward a lot of conflicted feelings for me. It often feels like work because writing is hard for me. Forcing myself to work when I don’t have to is also hard for me. But I love having written. I love reading my books when they’re done and I love re-reading my stories when the mood strikes, just as I did this morning with that unfinished piece of fan fiction. And I’ve written and published 12 novels and 9 shorter pieces of fiction in about 3 years. There’s follow through in that, no matter how often on this blog I make it sound like I can’t get anything done. ;)
The interesting thing is that the books are usually much better than I remember them being, so the act of re-reading them can sometimes boost my confidence and make it easier to tackle the day’s writing.
That’s how I feel today. Anyway, it’s time to end the long ramble and get started. I have books to write so I can have fun re-reading them later. :)
Started: 10:27 am
Finished: 11:50 am (Ouch! What happened to my decision to stop rereading and tweaking my—? Oh wait. I totally have an explanation for this. I started looking for the date I’d started that fan fiction story I mentioned above, ended up coming across a book in my archives I barely remembered, opened it, and read through the whole thing, all 15,000 words of it before finishing this post. It’s not funny how often that kind of thing happens to me and then I can’t even remember that I did it when I have to account for the time spent!)