When I’m firing on all cylinders, my goal is to write, polish, and submit a short story a week. That’s what I did this past summer, and that’s what I’ve been aiming to get back to since finally getting going with writing again. That doesn’t always happen, of course. There are babies. Right now my ministry is kicking up because it’s that time of year.
But sometimes I can’t write allthestories because I’m tackling another project. (That link goes to my other blog – so yeah, it’s still me writing there!)
And what happens is… I get frustrated. I want to be writing fiction, but now I’m writing something else. Now, yes, I do want to write that other project. I wouldn’t have chosen to pursue it if I didn’t want to. But… I want to do both!
That’s… unlikely to happen, unless my other obligations suddenly lighten in dramatic fashion.
So, one thing at a time, I guess. Sigh.
I’ll get back to those short stories someday. Hopefully soon.
But in the meantime, I’m left frustrated. I see calls for submission and I think of stories that could fit them. I know I could write them, but not in the time before that call for submissions closes – at least, not if I’m going to work on this other project.
It’s really a “writer problem” in general – too many things to write, and not enough time to tackle everything. It doesn’t really matter what you’re writing:
If you’re writing a novel, you’ll get ideas for more novels.
You’ll write a short story with a character that appears to speak one line.. but something about her intrigues you, so now you want to write another, different short story.
Something your kid says triggers another story idea, but you’re already juggling four!
And of course, all this assumes that you don’t abandon one idea to go chasing another. I’ve got plenty of half-finished stories – not because the ideas were bad or poorly executed. I just got another idea I had to write right now before I forgot it. I suspect even full-time writers have this problem!
Part of it is simply attention span. There’s a reason I’ve enjoyed focusing on short stories lately; I can usually slap together a rough draft in one or two days, and then polish it up and send it out quickly. Writing ADHD? Maybe that’s my problem! And now I’ve got a significantly longer project that I will need to focus on if I’m going to finish.
So… focus I must.
And get back to short stories soon enough, I hope!
Anyway. That’s what’s going on in my writing life. How do you handle not having enough time to write all your projects? Do you complain like me? Jot down ideas in a notebook? Slowly go insane? Quickly go insane?