In which the best laid plans are not so great after all.
A year that started so positively and with such high hopes turned into a pressure cooker pretty quickly, which is why I haven’t posted anything in a while. A deadline at the dayjob resulted in two entire departments, including mine, being required to work some pretty ridiculous evenings and–so far–one weekend. Evenings and a weekend, I might add, that I had counted on having to work on my Fireside story. My kids have barely seen me, my friends haven’t heard from me, John’s been running the household by himself for the past two weeks and deserves some kind of award for Best Husband Ever. The weekend work has now been lifted, but the evenings have not. I’m tired.
In the midst of this an opportunity to minion in a new part of the field came up completely unexpectedly–this was just a few days before the mandatory overtime was announced. I did what I could but I had to tell my new overlord that I needed to put the brakes on until next week.
But the rest of life does not come to a halt just because the workload increases: On Friday night I drove nine hours (five there, four back) for a concert with my oldest daughter, which was part of her birthday present, where we got to meet her idol (and my occasional muse) Emilie Autumn. She was an excellent example of how to treat fans–sweet and personable, taking her time with each one. The concert itself was spectacular and the drive was totally worth it to see Danni so happy.
Saturday I slept, went for a walk, went out to dinner with my husband–tried to write and just couldn’t, absolutely couldn’t. I’d been working on that story every night for nearly a month straight and I had to get away from it, I couldn’t see it clearly anymore. But Sunday I got up, we went to breakfast, and then I spent the rest of the day editing. I turned the story in at 12:31 a.m. this morning, Deadline Day. At this point I honestly have no idea if it’s any good. I guess I’ll find out when I get edits back.
I’d like to get back to my story-a-week thing, but I think I need to take a couple of nights off.
If there’s a take-away from the past four weeks, it’s this: Shit goes wrong. Plans are upended and expectations overturned. What looks like plenty of time can suddenly become no time at all. And writing well, by the way, is hard.
As tired as I am, as burnt out as I am, I suspect that life has really just given me a gift. I think I just got a taste of what it feels like to be a working writer.