Sunday, August 7, 2016

Writing Amidst Chaos

Every author faces this dilemma at one time or another–members of the family, for which you are responsible, take center stage and your writing gets shoved aside for the time being.
Whether it's moving your children into college dorms, moving your parents into nursing homes, or moving yourself from one house to another, the computer gets ignored while life takes over. You can't close the door and zone out in whatever century or world you're writing because an obligation, in the form of a child, sibling or parent, comes knocking.

Well, it's been my time. My sister got shoved out of the hospital too early, and into a nursing home that was a hell-hole. Another sister and I busted her out of the nursing home, rebels that we are, and brought her home for one night. The next morning, we rushed her to the ER, and she's been in the hospital ever since. It's a three-hour round trip to the hospital, so no writing gets done on the days I travel to see her. Fortunately she's improving, and should be moved from the hospital to the VA rehab center on Monday. Maybe by this time next week, she'll be back home.

So, has my writing suffered with this interruption? I'm pleased to say no,  it hasn't. It seems the less time I have to write, the more productive I am.

I'm awaiting a final galley on my contemporary Christmas novella set in the fictional town of Lobster Cove, ME. The preliminary galley was pretty clean, and I'm pleased with the way it looks.
I decided to expand my horizons and try my hand at a Regency, so I wrote a sweet Christmas novella set in that era, which I just sent off yesterday. My book,
The Duplicitous Debutante, is being included in a boxed set called Love Between The Pages, featuring novels about writers. The scheduled release date is September 26. I've got a boxed set of all nine books in my Cotillion Ball Series, plus the novella about Charlotte and George, being released in December, and another historical, Dance With Destiny, this time set in Ohio in 1861, will be released in December as well. More about those recent developments later. So, things are moving along. All I need is to find an agent for my middle-grade book by the end of the year, and I'll be a happy camper.

How about you? How do you handle life's interruptions?

14 comments:

  1. Interruptions. I have such a hard time getting back into the flow once I've let the world in. Glad you're finding your mojo!

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    1. Thanks, Lynn, as always, for visiting today. It's been a rough couple of weeks.

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  2. I feel like my whole life is one big interruptions with two small children ruling my household. When naptime/bedtime arrives (yay!), I take some me time to relax/mediate/pray whatever to clear my head of the events of the day, and then try to immerse my mind in the world I'm trying to create. It doesn't work all the time, but I'm still learning what is the best way to handle everything :o)

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    1. I'm in awe of authors who also juggle being a full-time mom. Good for you to keep plugging away at it.

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  3. Timing on this post is karmic. Sometimes I think it was easier to write when my children were younger and I had a more stressful Day Job. I've had a bad time this summer, barely making a deadline. My 82-year-old mom broke her ankle in 3 spots at the end of June and my 85-year-old dad is having issues. Nor could I write when I was doing my "shift" at their house. I tried. Every time I was there for five weeks. But as my critique partners said to me: "you can do this. You are a professional."

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    1. I've found that even when I can't write, for one reason or another, I'm thinking about plot lines and figuring out my story, so time is never wasted. Good luck with your folks. Sounds like you're doing things in the right order.

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  4. Excellent post, Becky! Having gone through the retirement home and nursing home experiences with my parents, I know how you feel. Take good care of yourself.

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    1. Thanks, Joanne. Things are getting back on track, finally.

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  5. I hope your sister heals quickly and that all will be well soon.
    I am not so easily dissuaded from writing. When urgent things come up, I am, like you, ready to act and take care of life and loved ones. My story ideas are always in my mind working things out whether I'm at a computer or not. I carry a tiny notebook and pencil everywhere I go so I can jot down whatever comes to mind.
    I wish you great success with your attempt at Regency. I am not as brave as you. Regency and mystery writing scare me!
    I wish you the best and your sister as well...

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    1. Still waiting to hear whether I can write Regency. I don't want to embarrass myself, since Regency fans are rabid if you get the facts wrong, but it's a cute story.

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  6. You are a wonder Becky, I'm bowing down to your prolific output in the face of distractions and commitments. Disciplined, that's what you are.
    Thanks for the encouragement.
    Best,
    Tema Merback
    Writing as Belle Ami

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    1. Thanks, Tema, for visiting today. It helps to really like what you do, and to feel like you're missing an appendage if you do without for a time.

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  7. Busy, busy, busy. You wear me out just reading about your activities. Congrats on all the releases. Hope your sister improves and gets released soon. But not TOO soon.

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    1. You stay busy, too, Barb. I keep seeing your name crop up on NEORWA business. Sis is home now, and coming along with her recovery. So, that's cut down on my "away from the computer" time, since I no longer have to do the drive over to Wade Park. We have to just keep chugging along.

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