I have a story that I am editing, a story that is half way done, a story that I just started and two stories that I am thinking about writing…I’m also thinking about painting my office…I’ll probably just get around to taking out the garbage though. Taking out the garbage is my default task when I am overwhelmed and I am overwhelmed, but it’s my own fault.
How many times have you done this to yourself? It’s tough being a writer with all those potential storylines rattling around in your head. Everywhere I go I get a new idea for a story…it’s like that old movie where the clairvoyant keeps hearing the voices of the dead people….it’s downright nerve-wracking, everyone talking at once….my head is often like that.
So what’s a writer to do? You don’t want to pass up on the really good ideas and sometimes you don’t know if they are really good ideas until you write a few chapters. And then there is the excitement that comes with the realization that the idea that just popped into your head very well could be the next big thing…you don’t want to be the reason the next big thing never gets out there do you?
The bottom line is that it is a lot of pressure. Some of the pressure you put on yourself and the rest of it, well, it’s the expectations of others. You want to be that writer that is always working, always producing but here’s the thing…you aren’t a juggler…so put the balls down and deal with one project at time. If you do, you’ll actually find yourself “finishing” something. (what a concept eh?)
As writers it is very easy to put all those irons in the fire. (Note: I always wondered what the heck that means, “too many irons in the fire”, why is that a bad thing? I mean what was the original meaning…if you know…tell the rest of us please, cause it’s kind of a goofy saying) You have a lot to do, writing, editing, marketing and so on which is why it is that much more important to pace yourself so that all of those things get done. Personally, I have pared myself back to editing one book, writing one book and then keeping an idea log for future projects. If I do this, stuff gets done and that is the important thing.
So put down those balls and choose just a couple to work on at a time…you will find that it is much easier to see results if you aren’t worried about not dropping all those other balls. You are, after all, a writer….leave the circus acts to the clowns.
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