Monday, February 11, 2008

Torn Between Two Projects

Okay, for most of us it's usually more than two...a lot more than two. But I couldn't resist the backhanded allusion to some old country song I don't even know who sang--my daughter likes to say that I have a song for everything, and she doesn't seem to mean that in a good way.

I suspect that the story I'm about to tell is a familiar one to many writers out there. I'm in the process of launching a social commentary webzine. I'm taking submissions, but even so I expect to do about half of the writing for launch myself, and I'm very eager to launch.

Which is fine: I'm a fast writer and I'm excited about getting this new venture off the ground.

The only problem is that I have a slightly-more-than-full-time day job, where equally exciting things are going on.

And I have a romance novel that's been done for more than a year that I have to figure out what to do with.

And I have a novella in progress that a friend of mine is eagerly waiting to film.

And I have a novel in progress that I'm personally very invested in.

And...well...six blogs.

And my sister just handed me a new magazine that my work would fit right in with.

I've heard writers talk about starting a lot of projects and then losing interest, but this isn't quite that problem. I'm entirely interested in all of this, and a few more things that I have in the works but aren't quite so pressing. There just aren't enough hours in the day--and then the world seems to want us to interact and pay bills and mop the kitchen and shower and stuff on top of it all.

What's a writer to do? How to prioritize? I haven't quite figured that out yet. Obviously, paid work comes first, but after that? Usually, it's the fun stuff that comes next, which is why I'm starting a new webzine and working on a novel when I've got a finished book sitting around that I can't find time to submit.


unusualsuspect said...

Yes, very familiar story--mine, in fact. The sheer pressure of time and energy wind up prioritizing for me. It doesn't matter how much I'm commited to the various projects. Sooner or later, I have to give up some of them. Good luck with yours.

Bobbie said...

It's funny -- some weeks I just seem to sail along, and my output on all fronts is amazing (even to me). Then something or other happens -- almost always some event that I classify as "outside interference" -- and I break my stride, so to speak. When that happens, I figuratively stumble around for days, and instead of writing content, and pursuing other tasks that require a certain focus of attention, I write lists for myself, and prioritize the items, and attempt to make a schedule: On Mondays, Wednesdays and Fridays I'll focus on these tasks, and on Tuesdays, Thursdays and Saturdays, I'll do these bits. Because, like you, I have more things to do than I really have time for, but they all are things I like doing.

Eventually I hit my stride again and things hum along -- until the next drop-in visitor, or appointment, or other "outside interference" pierces my bubble. Then I'm back to making and prioritizing lists of things to do.

There's a cycle there.

PD Warrior said...

Glad I found this blog. I seem to find myself in the same dilemma quite often. I too have a book that I have finished. It's been done for over a year, and I haven't even attempted to do anything with it. On top of that, book 2 is in the works.