I have this printed out and hung up on my wall. I see it throughout the day and it’s always a solid reality check for me. When I have unproductive days (or weeks), this is the quote that burrows into me, quiet and collected, ringing true.
Never hope for it more than you work for it. If I don’t put in my best effort, how can I dare to expect anything more?
It’s so easy to do anything other than writing. And it’s not because I don’t love to write. It’s just that there’s this big, tangled, messy ball-of-yarn cluster of thoughts and emotions and fears in my head, and there’s this coffee-and-wine-stained, scribbled-over, wrinkled first draft printed out and stacked next to my laptop, and a yawning, indeterminate stretch of work sprawled ahead of me that looms like a dark path going into the woods and it’s all dark and mysterious, and I freeze every time I attempt to stare down it down.
So. What have I been doing the past couple of weeks? Oh, you know. A little of this, a little of that. Made some DIY deodorant over the weekend. Currently have some homemade cayenne/onion/garlic bug spray straining through a paper towel on the counter. I keep Scrivener up on my laptop with my second draft open, and every once in a while I circle it, coming a little close and then backing away, because maybe it might bite. I type in a word or two. Maybe a sentence, if I’m feeling brave.
It’s been a slow couple weeks. Progress is being made, but glacially.
I’m thinking of getting back into a calendar system like I did with my daily word count during the first draft – writing in how many words I wrote each day so I could quickly see if I was staying on track or not. But since the second draft is more of a tweaking and typing and revising situation, I’ll probably need to go by hours put in instead. Hopefully it will help, because I’ve not been as productive as I could be.
Not sure if the daily word count thing is working super well for me anymore. I’ve taken to just jamming out a block of writing before going to bed late at night, or when I’m feeling sleepy, just writing nothing at all and telling myself “tomorrow I’ll write all day” (which has yet to happen…like, ever).
To mix things up, I think I’m going to start clocking in with a daily time count instead. How long did I work on the story? Outlining, writing, revising, note-taking – instead of just writing down the number of words I write towards the novel each day, I’ll write down the time I devoted towards the novel overall.
Hopefully it’ll help me get back into the swing of things. I had a zero night last night and October overall has just been a weak month of writing for me so far.
I’ve got my second cup of coffee poured for the day, candle burning on the counter, fresh air and sunlight streaming in through the windows.
I think it’s about time I stopped dilly dallying and got started today, don’t you? I’ve only spent the entire morning reading and surfing the web. Time to actually be productive now.
Word count for today so far: 0
Time to get that number climbing, bucko.