Wednesday, April 07, 2010

Put Up or Shut Up, Brenda

So... I either messed up, or it was fate, or something similarly squicky, but either way, a revelation definitely happened today, one I knew -- in my heart -- but hadn't really looked at too closely until this morning, and the shock of it jolted me. Violently.

One of my favorite places to visit every day is Lucy March and it's really great to watch her on a daily basis as she travels emotionally and mentally through Life right now. I replied to her post, and then she replied back, and reminded me of an email I sent her years ago after reading her first book, TIME OFF FOR GOOD BEHAVIOR, and if you read my stuff at all, you'll know it's one of my all-time favorite books. I'd forgotten about that email I'd sent until she reminded me of it, and in doing so, I went digging through my blog, back to 2005, and time after time of reading blog post after blog post, one thing kept sounding loud and clear, and I sat here, staring and reading, it was like roadkill I couldn't look away from.

A huge, vast galaxy of excuses.

I wasn't writing because of this. I wasn't writing because of that. Day after day, week after week, YEAR AFTER YEAR!

I sat here, staring at my laptop.

So okay -- the other side of it. In the last five years, tons of changes have happened in my life. HUGE, HONKIN' changes. Two moves, Sydney's asperger's, Cooper's epilepsy, Shandie off to college, a divorce. Finding who I really am, aside from wife then ex-wife, mother, daughter, Rick's girlfriend, online friendships, now Girl Scout leader and real life friendships. If I strip all of that away, over the course of these years of turmoil, I'm pretty comfortable now with who I know I am.

So, today, April 7, 2010, I'm drawing my line in my own sand. For FIVE YEARS -- five years -- my God just to type it... I've spewed excuse after excuse on why the writing isn't forthcoming. In the last two months, I've written more than I did the last couple of years, but it's not enough. Sure, I've made progress, but it's NOT. ENOUGH.

Two years ago I said I wouldn't attend another National conference until I had something ready to pitch, and I didn't have anything ready, so I didn't go to San Fran or to DC. But this year, this is the year I was going to return, I was going to be in the writing world again, and I was going to write and be ready to pitch. I know I want to write for Blaze. I've created myself a one year, five year and 10 year plan. I've learned collages. But I'm still not producing pages on a daily basis. I'm a realist enough to see the progress I've made and give myself credit for it, but also to understand, deep in my soul, that it's simply not enough.

As Rick said when I talked to him about this, my writing STILL has not become a priority. And, as usual (grumble grumble): He's right.

April is always a tough month for me. Easter and then Carly and Sydney's birthdays. Money is tighter than usual. So I said I didn't think I'd make it to Austin for my writers meetings (it's an hour and a half each way to travel.) But if it's important, I'd find a way, so we'll figure it out to make it happen because *It's Important* that I do so.

For me to keep my promise to myself not to attend Nationals unless I can pitch, I have until May 18th. Early registration for Nationals ends on May 19th. That means that as of today, April 7th, I have six weeks to FINISH this book I'm currently working on.

If I do not meet this goal, I will walk away from writing altogether and simply be a fan of some of the most wonderful women I've ever met and support them as much as I can. This is my line.

Wish me luck.


Lexi said...

Bren-da! Bren-da! Bren-da! I'm rooting for you!

M. Edward (Ed) Borasky said...

Hey there - long time no see! How the heck are you?