Wednesday 25 April 2012

Swimming Through Treacle

Another long time, no blog. It's poor really, I wish I could fit everything in effortlessly. Like Maisey Yates for example, she has small children but is just so productive. Whereas I seem to have day after day at the moment where I reach the end feeling like I've run a marathon but with actually very little to show for it.

The WIP is currently half-finished. I received revisions on Chapters 1-6 at the beginning of April, mainly focused on building up the hero. I can totally see where the editor is coming from - I've got so carried away with my heroine that it's become very much her story, her journey. Strangely, considering my How-To book addiction and all the help I've been lucky enough to receive, this is the first time I've fully understood that it needs to be a 50-50 split story, a journey for both hero and heroine that converges.

Somewhere during April I've begun feeling like I'm swimming through treacle with this. The kids were off for the Easter break and at the same time we bought a puppy, something we've planned for ages. I knew the puppy would be hard work at first but I just totally underestimated the time I would spend supervising the small one with him, dropping everything to put him on his pee-pad (I have read everything I could lay my hands on about housetraining) cleaning up, driving the older two around (their social life surpasses mine) etc etc. When all I want to be doing is sitting at my laptop working out these revisions and then writing Chapters 7-9. The editor checked in with me last Monday and I just am nowhere near happy with what I've got, certainly not enough to send it in to her yet.

The frustrating reality is that much as I love writing and want to spend every spare moment on it, it isn't something I'm paid for and I have a million other things shoving it down the priority list. As a result I don't think I'm doing anything particularly well right now.

Sorry for being moany! I will hopefully have more positive things to report soon. In the meantime puppy has woken up so I'm back to supervising! Bye for now.


  1. Hi Charlotte,

    I just wanted to try and offer you some encouragement!! First of all, when you're raising small children and organizing a household, etc, you've always accomplished something MAJOR at the end of the day. Never, ever feel like you haven't.

    I'd love to say I have a fool proof method for getting things done, but I don't. Life is hectic, things are always different from day to day, so what worked yesterday doesn't always work today. That's okay. ;) It's kind of freeing to know that.

    My tricks for getting work done, especially pre-publication were many, and I'm going to share them with you and hope they help!

    Seize the opportunity at any time. I like to write at night, but sometimes I would get a weird quiet lull during naps or before the kids got up, or during Sesame Street, and taking those times proved really helpful in terms of getting work done, and in terms of being able to shut the flow on and off, and put it in my control instead of the other way around.

    Take small snatches of time. I like to sit down and write uninterrupted for HOURS. That's not always REALISTIC sadly. ;/ So I've had to learn to take the minutes here and there at times. And you know? It adds up.

    Plan what you're going to do while you're away from the computer. (I brainstorm, plot, plan while doing the school run, dishes, etc)

    Schedule a block of time. I used to write in Starbucks from 7-9 at night a couple of days a week. After dinner, after the husband was home, and it was MY time. Not much time, but mine.

    And this goes back to the beginning of the post: be kind to yourself. Don't beat yourself up. Congratulate yourself on making it through every single day.

    1. Hi Maisey! You are lovely. Thank you so much for taking the time to comment, I really appreciate it and it does make me feel better. I think I might try getting up an hour or two earlier than the rest of the fray - it might be more knackering but I'll take that over this feeling of non-achievement anytime!

  2. I'm going to chime in here too Charlotte and remind you what a wonderful writer you are. However you pull yourself back to your WIP so that you're able to embrace it again (honestly, I completely 'get' what you mean about wading through treacle!)never forget you've got that 'something' the editors want.

    Good luck - you WILL get there xxx

    1. Hi Michelle! Thank you! It's been a tough few weeks but I am plugging away and hopefully am on the up. Thanks so much for your support I really appreciate it xx