Wednesday, March 21, 2012

Out of the Darkness...

I woke up very early this morning. Well, actually it was the middle of the night. All of a sudden, I found myself wide awake and an idea for a new writing project was glaring at me like a neon sign on a cheap hotel. I lay there plotting and planning and getting excited about the project. It was about two hours later that I finally fell asleep again. When I woke up, all that I'd thought about during that earlier waking time was still there. I definitely felt like doing the Happy Dance. 

How long has it been since you've gotten excited about a new writing project? It makes you want to put everything else aside and get started down that new path. But everyday things need to be addressed. You know the things I mean---meals, household tasks, social life, family and also the routine writing life chores. For me, that means a blog post five days a week and answering e-mail messages, also interacting with subs and crits at my online writing group. I need to keep subbing my work to editors, too, if I want to see publication. 

For those who write a weekly or daily newspaper column, that comes first. Maybe you're writing an article for an editor that has a deadline. Hit it before you start the new, and maybe more exciting, project. 

It's one of the frustrating sides of the writing coin--not having enough time to work on a great new idea. This is when you have to 'create' time to get started on your great idea. If you keep putting it aside until you finish the more mundane things, you may never get to it. The project idea starts to cool off with each day that you don't work on it. Wait too long, and it might never get off the ground at all. 

If you do nothing else, work on it mentally. You can put in a lot of planning time while you unload the dishwasher or run the vacuum cleaner. I try to walk for exercise as often as possible (and lately that often isn't coming around as much as it should!). The time I spend on the walking trail near my house is perfect for working out a story in my mind. I have a feeling I'm going to do a lot of thinking about this new project while hoofing it up and down that trail. 

My wish for all of you as spring begins here in the USA is that you'll find an exciting new project in your writing life. Make time to work on it and enjoy the ride. 

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