Monday, September 24, 2012

Reconciling What I've Learned

The weekend resulted being more introspective than I had planned. Friday's paying job portion of the day ended with a trigger setting off the Perfect Girl abuse in my head. Finally settled that down without casualties, and had a chat with the Muse in between blood work and dental appointments on Saturday. Sunday resulted in positive reinforcement.

All that mental work distills into two ideas. 1). Every writer's journey is different, and I hate my back seat driver (Perfect Girl). 2). (After the Muse and I stuffed the Perfect Girl into the trunk of the writing metaphor car), I need to reclaim the fun in creating to keep the Perfect Girl from messing with my writing life.

So my checklists. I make no secret that I need the checklists because otherwise I will forget continuously to do the chores I must do and my life with spiral out of control. But I also think that setting time limits/word count goals/quantitative control measures to prove I'm doing something have contributed to sucking the fun out of writing.

It also just occurred to me that the abuse tape loop in my head that I have labeled Perfect Girl was aided by the fact that I started writing so early. Nobody took it seriously because who takes an 11-year-old seriously. Writing is just you playing around and it's nothing serious and it will never be anything serious and why are you wasting so much time with it. Your sister won the young writer's contest never you; why are you still messing around with it and grow up. Soaking up the condescension like a good little sponge, ready to throw it back at myself with so much anger should I rise above myself. Yeah, I'm undecided about that insight.

Working with KanbanFlow, I'm allowed to have three projects open at a time. I like having a I wrote today marker, especially since I don't know when I'll start typing and will get word counts. I need time limits on some stuff, otherwise they'll turn into time-sucks or I'll avoid them because they feel unmanageable. The rewards system has successes in modifying my behavior, so I should continue using it (instead of letting Perfect Girl scream at me that I'm a failure for not vacuuming). Changes made:

  • Add reward to dishes, it's too damn easy for me to ignore them.
  • Replace the time details for writing and editing with "worked on Writing Project #1, #2, #3"
  • Writing Projects #1, #2, and #3 get separate task blocks from the daily chores block, but I don't want to copy what I have set up on the Writing Projects Boards. So all I filled out was the name of the project, a due date, and how much time I have spent working on it. The last is to keep me from scheduling more into my day because it must be free if it's not already obligated. And yes, a due date because I don't want to waffle on my next steps or toss a project aside because I got scared. I want to work daily and consistently.
So far the changes look good, the test drive is for the rest of this week.

In other news: between appoints on Saturday, I found a new mp3 player in Office Depot of all places. I ended up going in just to kill time and already annoyed because all that I had found elsewhere were Apple products or not-Apple that played video. Not what I need. Office Depot had 2GB Polaroid mp3 player for $9.99. Doubled the storage space of my last one, will miss the built in flash drive, way cheaper than what I payed how many years ago?, have a FM tuner for the car and headphones already, so okay, next paycheck.

After my teeth were finished, I remembered that Office Depot had sent me rewards money to spend. It should cover the whole amount unless they have a rule that I must pay taxes out of pocket, so I don't have to wait.

Now I'm off to work on writing before the paying job sucks away my time.

Read Free!
The BookWorm


Mez said...

I think one of the main reasons your subconscious is telling you you're still 'playing around' is that you haven't really set a goal, other than 'write'. That's not really a goal that will lead you anywhere. Why do you not have a goal of submitting? Why not a goal of finishing a novel so you can review and then query on?

Writing is not a goal. Writing is just an activity.

KLCtheBookWorm said...

Oh I set the goals. And then I run away from the goals as fast as I can, or I dawdle on the steps so I never reach the submission stage, and don't even REALIZE I'm doing it until two-thirds of the whole year is gone and I can never get that time back!

It doesn't help that my brain knows there's nothing personal to the whole process: you write ad submit and eventually something finds a home and it's all business. But emotionally it's all tied up in the kid who never got any encouragement, never wrote anything anybody liked, and is scared shitless of being poor. And all writers are poor because nobody wants what you write. Rinse, repeat.

Every time I think I have a handle on that kid,, she and Perfect Girl are trampling all over my writing life again. I'm tired of beating myself up. I'm tired of freezing up in the first draft because the rage voice is screaming you can't sell this. I'm tired of feeling like my brain is full of little demons who are waiting to dance a merry jig when I say fine you win, no more writing.

Seriously, where the hell does that come from because my family could give a fine flying fuck with whatever I do? And I feel that I'm not un-functional enough for therapy so I'm stuck on dealing with it all on my own.

Positive steps that I'm trying to focus on: 1). world building for Stellar: the stuff I skipped over, 2). first draft of Forget the Sun which I should have started back in June, but I've given myself a nine-month deadline to finish and send out for professional editing before turning it into an e-book, 3). cleaning out the story crate because I've been stuff everything in there and I have no room for what should be current projects only. It's housekeeping busy work but still needs to be done. 4). Create a damn win file because I've been hit over the head twice with the need to do that. 5). Decide if there's any hope for submitting short stories. I have a grand total of three that don't fall under the filed ban and need revising.

Well there went an hour I could have accomplished something in. :p

Mez said...

Moving forward slowly is still moving forward. But you need to start submitting.