Saturday, October 16, 2010

Too many ideas -- too little time

I was beginning to feel good about getting caught up. After many hours hunched over my keyboard, I finally have the ms. ready to upload to Create Space. I am lacking a cover, but a photographer friend is working on it.

I "published" the book in 2002 with PublishAmerica. Please, no commiseration. I didn't know any better, all right? But the rights have reverted to me and I plan on seeing how well I do self-publishing where I will have more control of the product.

I am not doing this out of vanity; people are still asking me if I have a copy of the book so they can give it to a friend. The book is an account of my bout with breast cancer and tells a newly-diagnosed patient what to expect from treatment. It's not just clinical, I also discuss spells of depression and how to handle the reactions of friends and family. From what people tell me, it has helped them get through this difficult time in their lives.

Anyway, I hoped to complete this project and start editing another book I wrote about a year ago. After taking Eliza Knight's course, "Edit Your Book in a Month," I can see many places where it could be improved before sending it out into the world. Next up, doing the same process on my historical novel which is about three times as long as the other one.

Then what happens? A new idea for a new book. I can't stop thinking about it and my fingers itch to get it down on paper -- er, a digital file.

So, I need to set up a schedule. So many hours on paying work (I do have a job, even though I work at home), so many hours editing, so many hours for querying and marketing, and then -- so many hours for creating.

Let's see if I can stay with my plan. Maybe I need to get an alarm clock -- or set my computer to beep after working a for set time on one chore. Hmmm...

Thursday, October 7, 2010

Escapism - Literally

One of the rules of blogging is that you must keep up with your posts.

So much for that -- I got in over my head and like any intelligent person, threw up my hands and called for a respite. I told my husband we were going to Pennsylania. He was surprised, but amenable, and we threw some things in a suitcase and began the 12-hour trip for a five-day visit with my sister.

The advantage was that there was no way I could keep up with my on-line class, my blog, my writing, or my (admittedly at-home) job. I didn't bring my laptop. I didn't even bring a notebook. I squelched my guilty conscience and had a great time.

Of course, when I came back, there was that backlog of work to be done. I think I have finally come to the end of the to-do list, but things keep getting added, so I am resigned that I will never quite finish.

I do have some priorities, though. And I am working through them. Job, yes, for the money comes in handy until I can earn enough from writing to quit. Oh wait, my job is writing. I meant writing books, not work-for-hire articles.

So I am simultaneously preparing my first book for self-publication, the contract having run out, and editing my fifth in preparation for sending it forth to find its fortune. Books two and three languish in that limbo known as "send the ms. and we'll look at it."

I also facilitate (teach) a class once a week so that takes some preparation. I am secretary of four organizations. I do a newsletter for a cancer support group. And, I am trying to market my novel.

Something obviously has to give. I refuse to stop writing and I can't easily get out of the other commitments, so the answer is: housework.

I may just write a book about how you can have your house look presentable by cleaning a half hour a day. Just don't look under the beds or in the closets.