Time: My Cruel Mistress

The synopsis is mostly done. I wrote it, revised a couple of times, and then sent it to my beta readers. They got back to me on changes, I made them, and sent it out for a final read as I made more than just their changes. So helpful to me to have a second set of eyes look at something, especially as they have both read the story.

Next step is to go through and make the changes my brother in law noted.  I have been working on my other piece and am currently 30k words into it. It’s been flowing lately, even if my characters aren’t doing what I had plotted for them to do. Still, it’s been a fun ride. This is the exciting part where things are happening and coming together. Not always as expected, not without a ton of rewrites lurking ahead, but still fun. I was so not expecting my cold and ruthlessly practical character to demand to do certain things I had thought totally out of character. He corrected me, and explained if he wants something, he is damn well going to get it. He’ll figure out a way. Like I said, so fun when the characters are coming to life.

But it gets back to one of my biggest challenges writing. Time. I want more time to revise that first story, more time to pour through agents to query, more time to work on the raw and unformed but exciting new piece. That doesn’t mention the time I wish I had to read novels, study other authors, and work to perfect my craft.

I love my family.

Need my day job.

Can’t go without sleep indefinitely (though both my kids have tested to see how long I can go).

Laundry waits for no one

Find it hard to ignore the howl of the internet, especially with everything happening in the presidential race, over in the middle east, etc.

I’m supposed to exercise

. . . I could go on.

The timing of my inspiration to take up writing again doesn’t help. Babies are just high maintenance. The kind of maintenance that cries at 2am for no reason, refuses to go to sleep until 10pm, and scares you witless with pneumonia.

Some things I can do better on to garner more time. I recently deleted a couple of apps off my iPad that were sucking way too much time. But others? Just not going to happen. The kids need my time and attention, and I want to give it to them. They are only going to be this little once. And we all have to eat, so keeping my day job.

It does bring home some advice I had read saying to make sure your manuscript is as perfect as you can get it before sending it off. Because if a publisher does bite, you are suddenly on their schedule and not yours. You are their day job. Time becomes even more precious.

There’s a not so secret part of me that wishes my work was amazing enough and I was lucky enough that my first novel would be a break out success and I could quit my day job. Realism, however, is a cruel mistress. I’ll be fortunate to get published at all, and most writers are doing well if they earn back the advance on their books. Most of those advances won’t support a family for long.

I suppose this is true for most hobbyists. It stings to think of my writing as a hobby given how seriously I take it, but really, that’s what it is.

We’d all like more time for these pursuits. I know people who enjoy horseback riding, basketball, and jewelry making. None of them feel like they have enough time for their passions either.

Do what you can with what you have.

Let’s see if I can get that book revised soon so I can package it up for its first round of rejections.

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