I saw one of those things on Facebook yesterday. You know, the inspiring quote put over a lovely picture that can never be attributed to just one originator. But this one caught my attention because 2016 was particularly rough to me in the second half. The biggest and worst thing to happen to me in 2016 was that my health got worse to the point where I lost my job in November.
There are fun parts to having a cold.
Like dreams. Some of my best story-seed dreams have come out of times where I had a low-grade (or not so low) fever. Nothing yet this time around. Sort of hoping that if I have to be sick I’ll at least get something like that out of it! I do write the dreams that would make good stories down, so if there is something that comes out of it, at least I’ll be able to revisit it later.
Writing in general is coming along slowly at the moment. Nothing slows down writing like getting a cold or the flu on top of a chronic condition. And while I like to think I’m starting to feel better today; the dark circles under my eyes and the way that my bed still calls my name suggest otherwise. I may contemplate a nap before attempting any more writing today.
I’ve figured out that I’m probably going to need to scrap what I’ve written of the chapter I’m on and start it over again with a different approach. It’s not flowing right. The events of the chapter are going to be the same, but the way I’m taking it on isn’t working. I feel stuck, and that’s not just the feverish inability to focus.
So between that and the cold I may need to push the completion of this draft back a few days. It’s still going to be nice to have a draft finished before the end of the year. The fun part is when I send this draft off to my beta readers soon… and get to start the next draft of the next book.
I have a few other things I want to blog about. But later, when my thoughts aren’t so illness-fuzzy.
I’m about 3k words behind as of writing here this morning. Right now, the fact that I am behind and need to catch up is one of the few things in my life that makes any sense to me, so it’s a good thing to focus on. The best news is that I have all day to catch up, and that time includes a nice, quiet write-in at the local library.
I know I haven’t said much here in a few days. Right now I am going through the worst flare-up of fibromyalgia that I have ever had, and dealing with a lot of emotional pain going on in my personal life. I’ve been trying to conserve my spoons (see spoon theory), and so a lot of things (like blogging) have fallen by the wayside. I’m slowly starting to feel better and getting back into the routines I’ve been trying to make for myself. Would still like to curl up in a ball for a week and then try to deal with everything, but that would be too much like admitting defeat, I think, and I don’t have that luxury.
So wish me luck in getting through the next ten days. Both my mental and physical health are trying to turn against me right now and I refuse to let it happen without a fight.
Had an odd Friday/Saturday that consisted of a bad fibromyalgia flare-up and my not remembering much or being able to think very well. This is known as fibro fog, and it’s almost worse than the constant pain. The pain has also very much been present, as well as the dratted sensory hypersensitivity that makes it all worse. Needless to say, it had NOT been a very productive weekend so far. It’s hard to sit and type for any amount of time in that condition. I managed maybe a total of 200 words on Friday and Saturday.
Today I woke up and took a look at my word count to find that I was exactly 4k words behind of the 16,667 I need to be at by the end of today. And although I am still very much foggy and in pain, there’s this little part of me that refused to bow down to the tyranny of the fibro. I’m still not caught up yet but I’m getting there.
One of the biggest challenges I’m facing in the writing itself at this point is that the last few hundred words I’ve written have revealed to me that the way I had my magic system, and the way the magic system actually is in this world, are very different things indeed. Now, I’m content to keep the new way, because it’s better and it’s awesome. But it’s requiring a shift in thought and a shift in outlining because it changes the entire course of things. I’ve not had much brainpower for paradigm shifts these past few days, so instead of flowing the way the previous 12k words had, now it feels like every word is being extracted like a stubborn tooth without anesthesia.
I’m tempted to scrap the idea, delete the last few hundred words, and use it in a different book. It’s got merit, but I’m not sure that it belongs in the story that I already had going. However, I feel like I could maybe build an entire different world around a magic system like that. I’m going to need SOMETHING to work on after I’ve finished this series, after all. So I guess I have a decision to make today… and might need to spend more time writing than anticipated to catch up.
Thank goodness I am just awesome enough to pull it off, right?
So I didn’t get much writing done yesterday (day 6) because my boyfriend was in town. Distance relationships are hard enough to maintain without me saying “oh, you’re here, yay! Now let me ignore you while I write.” Was NOT going to happen that way. It was, however, a much-needed and fabulous day where I maybe got just a little spoiled. Some guys buy their girlfriends flowers; my boyfriend buys me gaming dice. I think I win. ❤
Now, it’s possible that I might have known on Monday night that I wouldn’t have much time to write on Wednesday, and that’s why I worked so hard to get ahead on Monday and Tuesday. By the end of Tuesday (day 5) I was sitting at 12,169, which was a good two days ahead. As of writing this, I’m at 12,486, with all of that increase from yesterday. (See? I got some writing done anyway, if only 300 words or so.) I haven’t really gotten to writing yet today, and I’m still ahead of today’s par of 11,666.
Now, I’m not going to lie. I am tempted not to do any work at all today and to pick up in the morning. I’m having a bad fibromyalgia day and my depression isn’t liking me much either. I sat down to write once this morning already, and discovered after only one sentence that my entire magic system wants to be a completely different way than I had planned. A better way, thank goodness, but it’s still a major change that is going to require me to sit down and revise my outlines. The question is, do I sacrifice word count for plotting time? Or perhaps ignore them both in favor of rest because it’s one of those days where I can feel and be hurt by the weight of every hair on my body? (Someday I need to actually WRITE about fibromyalgia here, not just talk about it.)
I haven’t decided. Maybe this is that moment where that initial rush finally wears off and I have to settle in for an endurance race instead of a sprint. It happens to us all (unless you’re one of the people that somehow manages all 50k words in the first few days). Maybe it’s just hitting me. I’ll have to think about it, see what it is, and decide from there. The last thing I want to do is get behind. I haven’t won since 2009 and that is changing this year. I WILL win… even if it means writing through very bad fibro days to do it.
Now if I could just get my ribs to stop hurting long enough to live up to what I just said…
So I’m sure you’ve all noticed that I’ve been very much absent these past few weeks. Or at least I hope you have. I would hate to be forgotten.
I feel like sharing the reasons for my absence, even though I know I’m not obligated:
- My job demands much of my time and energy (10 hour shifts plus 2-3 hours commute time), and leaves little for the writing work I actually enjoy–especially with the fibromyalgia also demanding more than its fair share of my time in rest and recuperation. For some reason, this has to be through mindless tasks where I don’t have to think, like video games or sleep. Writing seriously (for profit!) doesn’t qualify as restful even though I wish it did; it qualifies as a second job.
- My job feels like a soul-sucking dead end chained to a desk (not even a full cubicle!) by a phone cord, and my creativity has been drained and underfed by the demands of being an introvert who is attempting to deliver pleasant customer service for hours upon hours every day. When I do have the time (the easiest thing to get on my ‘need this in order to write’ list; energy and anything resembling creativity are a lot harder to come by), I find myself staring at the blank page for a long and useless stretch. Or worse, I end up scribbling profanities and expressing the desire to die in a way that would make the goths from my late 1990s high school proud. I THINK I can still count this as writing practice… but it’s not going to generate any income or publicity for me.
- In spite of thinking that I had everything under control, but perhaps not surprising given the emotionally draining nature of my job, it would seem that my anxiety/panic attacks are back. And with a side helping of severe depression, of course. I’m not doing well right now. I’ve been waking up every day in flight-or-fight mode, but there’s nothing to fight and nowhere I can run. This high-adrenaline limbo is taking a serious toll on both my mental and physical health, and I’m not sure how much longer I can last before something breaks somewhere. It’s not helping the fibromyalgia, that’s for sure. Nothing triggers a chronic condition like stress.
I’m working hard to overcome the last one, because it is the worst of the three. Nothing is as awful as being stuck in flight-or-fight mode and not being able to go either way. It affects EVERYTHING about a person’s life.
That being said, I still think I’m going to take advantage of what’s left of my weekend today. I have a bit of yard work to do, and then, if I’m not too terribly shaky still, I may attempt a trip to the bookstore cafe to sit and write something besides death and profanities….
Wish me health and luck and good thoughts/prayers if you can. I really need them all right now in doses I can’t make happen alone.
❤ ❤ ❤
(And PS- if you haven’t yet bought my book, that could help me out a little too! Share it with your friends/family/etc. as well! Okay, shameless plug over now. 😛 I love you all. )
The stress of trying to find a “real” job is taking a toll on me. Not just mentally, but physically too. I hate to say it, but I’ve been on hiatus and I think it’s going to continue at least until this dog-sitting job I’m doing is over and I can get enough sleep. I can’t think, I can’t write, I can’t see straight… I am NEVER getting a puppy of my own. Kittens and fish are still open for debate. 🙂 Maybe a whole aquarium with a good filter full of nice, relaxing fishies…