It’s 3 am and I can’t sleep, a ridiculous scenario that’s becoming more frequent as my pregnancy progresses. While I watch the Iron Chefs duke it out with some ingredient I’ve never heard of, only one pervasive thought is on my mind: I should be working on my novel.
I’m a seriously deranged person.
But it’s something I’ve started worrying about a lot. My goal as a writer is to become an established children’s/YA author. To do this, one must write books. But as I move toward the birth of my first child in May, I am soooo easily distracted. I can’t sit down anymore and write an entire scene or chapter; I’m lucky if I can pay attention to anything for more than an hour. And when I do sit down to write, other things take up that time: researching or drafting the next post for this blog; doing a critique; writing a drama for church. When the baby’s born, I’ll have less time to write (and sleep), so how on earth will I be able to finish that novel, revise it, and ship it off to the agents and editors who are eagerly awaiting its arrival?
And then I realize: I’ve lost sight of The Big Picture. To achieve my goal, yes, I’ll need to write consistently. But does every second of my writing time have to be spent on that WIP? Not necessarily. There are many things I can do to develop my craft. Critiquing has value because it helps me to analyze a sample of writing, an invaluable skill for a writer. My hope for this blog is that it will help others but also that it will become a marketing tool for my career; as such, my contribution to it is important. As for writing dramas or anything else—well, duh. That’s writing.
So achieving my dream to become a mother doesn’t negate my other dream of becoming a successful children’s author. The second may take a little longer, but it’ll happen as long as I keep moving forward, whether that means working bit-by-bit on my novel, red-lining Angela’s latest literary brainchild, or coming up with new ways to show my character’s anger (shameless plug: see Emotion Thesaurus in the sidebar). The important thing is that I’m writing.
Now, if I could just get some sleep.
Thought for the day: “Baby steps to the door…Baby steps to the elevator…” (What About Bob)
Angela is a writing coach, international speaker, and bestselling author who loves to travel, teach, empower writers, and pay-it-forward. She also is a founder of One Stop For Writers, a portal to powerful, innovative tools to help writers elevate their storytelling.