My most recent project proved to be the series of 12 articles, “A Year of Writing.” I don’t remember why I decided to make it, but it became a blast for me. I always like doing blogs, but the “Year of Writing” not only flew onto paper, it, strangely enough, got me excited about writing again.
While its original intent was more for fun than for practicality, I realized that I wanted to participate anyway. Considering that (due to my ill planning) the Year of Writing would best begin in July, based around the numbers of days in a month, and July happened to be coming up, I decided to try out my own advice and commit to a year of writing.
That’s when the universe attacked.
First and foremost, I have three plays due this year that I haven’t done. The one due in August is half-finished, but that leaves very little time for editing. Plays, unlike novels, don’t take that long (I could finish one in a week without a lot of effort), which only makes me want to procrastinate more. But because the Year of Writing was intended for someone who wrote less than I do, and that requirements were less demanding, I believe that I can do both without stress.
But then there’s National Novel Writing Month, which I love participating in for various reasons, despite the stigma and my innate snobbiness. Yet because of the way I structured the Year of Writing, my requirements being 1,750 words a day, and Writing Month being 1,500 words a day, this adds up to 3,250 words a day which is only 750 words more than I normally ask myself to do on a regular basis. Because I also put in breaks of editing, writing, or playing around every three days, I don’t think this will be impossible either. Just stressfully problematic. Hell. It’s only a month.
Then my cat died.
He was old, 19 or 20, and it was bound to happen sooner or later. I don’t think I believed that truly though. He was missing an eye and needed pills every day, but he was majorly happy and energetic. I didn’t see it coming. I was horrified.
Then my job went from five days a week to six days a week.
Now, not only did I work from nine to six every day, plus the hour that it takes to get to and from town, but I didn’t have my usual day off.
And my friend came home.
Being that I wanted to think about something other than the grief, and being too busy is a state of mind, I may have been able to be productive anyway, if not for an old friend staying here for the weekend. More importantly, just the weekend. So I spent my one day off with her, and then went six to eleven to hang out with friends. Had she been available all the time, I may have blown her off, but I only had the option of seeing her right then and there, so as the universe proclaimed, “It must be done now.”
And my job went from six days a week to seven days a week, from nine hours a day to twelve hours a day.
One of my other jobs is stage managing. Well, the second week of July, a show started up. Now I get up at eight and head off to work for nine hours, then go to rehearsal after. My entire Sunday I am working the show, so now, for a limited time, I have no days off.
Then, finally, when I finally got an evening off work, my friend was gone, and I had no other excuses to meet with, my monthly writing group came around, which meant that I got off at six and had to straight to a meeting until nine.
Basically, my schedule did not want me to work.
So, with all of that being said, the conclusion comes down to this: I did it anyway.
Bam bitches. Four short stories, edited, right on track.
The good thing and bad thing about the Year of Writing is that I made the first month relatively easy. This made the fact that though there were several days I couldn’t/didn’t work, I could get caught up without a lot of stress. I didn’t give up. I knew I could do it.
On the other hand, it’s bad because I know I can get caught up, which makes me less motivated to get it done.
In any case, each week I’ll give you an update on how I’m doing. I imagine the rest of the year is going to go like this.