I haven’t been here lately. I’ve been elsewhere, bouncing between countries, doing holiday stuff, and trying to ignore that I’ve been totally neglecting my novel.
Yeah. I haven’t been so productive lately, and the anxiety and guilt is finally starting to dig its claws into me physically because of it. Tiny headaches, tension in my shoulders – it’s as if I’m haunted; like every moment I’m not writing there is a tiny ghost inside of me that pokes and prods and nags and is impossible to ignore. It’s interesting how I literally have a visceral reaction to not writing.
I quit my job to do this and time is running out. I gave myself to the end of February, to the AWP – although now that I’ve really looked at it, the AWP is beginning to look like it won’t be financially feasible for me. But still, the deadline is there. And what have I done in the last month? Shrug. Not very much, writing-wise.
I did hit 100 pages, which was huge – 100 pages feels so real, like I’ve really done something. If I printed it out, that would be an impressive stack of paper. But I’m nowhere near the end, and I have no idea how much longer it will take me, or how to accomplish making it all feel cohesive, or even what’s going to happen, really. And what if it’s awful? I’m 100 pages in, and this could be an awful, ridiculous story.
I try not to focus on those things. Once I start worrying, it worms its way into me for hours and days. I immobilize myself. Sometimes I wonder if I do it on purpose, just to avoid writing.
Writing is so much more work than I realized it would be.
But I hit 100 pages. And now it’s time for me to stop kicking myself for the past few weeks I’ve wasted, and to just start typing instead.
Keep moving. Keep writing. Keep typing. Stop thinking.