September Writing Goals

It’s been a hard month of writing, y’all.

Even with my semester being back in full swing, I’m barely scraping by.

I had planned on finishing my YA Suburban Fantasy by August (then by mid-August, then by the end of August…) and that hasn’t happened yet. I’ve been dealing with constant Depression Sessions and it’s just making me tired and unable to do much. It’s not even that I’ve hit a wall with my writing; I know exactly what’s going to happen and I know how the story is going to end.

I feel like I’ve lost a spark of excitement for the story. I’m always coming back to my YA Fantasy and I’ve even been toying with a YA Heist Fantasy and a YA Urban Fantasy about a queer necromancer, but not this story.

When I was at residency, my mentor and Slytherin extraordinaire Pablo Cartaya talked about finding the heart of the story during his workshop, about finding out what made the story shine and where that heart was during all the revisions and drafts.

I feel like this story is lacking a heart, or at least I can’t see it, and I’m not in love with this story. And I’m not sure if it’s because I feel like I’m missing the passion I need to complete the draft or if I’m too lost in the fog of a Depression Session to see it.

Writing and struggling through a mental illness isn’t easy, but I’m trying. I’m trying, y’all.

I just hope it’s enough.

So, here’s hoping to finish some revisions by the end of the month, just in time to submit my next packet, and maybe getting enough of a fire under my ass to break 40k and maybe enter the home stretch for this draft.

On Starting Up Again

I’m pretty open when it comes to my depression and how it affects my writing. Mainly that I find myself unable to write pretty often.

I talked a little bit about how this past semester was a rough one on this blog before, but yesterday I vented a little on my Twitter about how I decided to start up daily writing again.

Over the semester, I spent most of the month trying to read as much as a I could and then cramming all of my writing down into four or five days before everything was due. Mostly because I kept telling myself that I had more time to write than I actually did. So I ended up panic writing with my deadline quickly approaching.

Time management skills, I do not know ye.

But I’ve made a personal promise to myself to finish at least one draft this summer. I’ll have a lot of time to write when I go to Poland this summer, especially since a change of scenery always kick starts my creative drive into high gear.

pacemakerBut while I’m still stuck in New Jersey, with the same old scenery I’ve had for 20+ years, I decided to use this neat program called Pacemaker.press. It keeps track of multiple projects for you and it comes with this new calendar feature for its premium users and it’s been really helpful in keeping track of my daily work.

It’s been a tremendous help, especially since I’m such a visual learner and seeing it all laid out like that in front of me helps me keep in mind what I still need to get done. Plus, it lets me set up small, attainable goals every day that will eventually lead to a completed project. So it’s really neat.

Not that this blog post was supposed to be me telling you about this cool thing. I never really know how these blog posts are going to end.

But I’ve started work on my YA Fantasy again, and I’m really glad to be back in that world. I’ve also started a YA piece with the coolest lady around, JM Tuckerman, and that project is going to be fun.

Mother Nature Will Never Decide

Remember how I said that spring was coming? Yeah–Mother Nature made a liar out of me!

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It’s not much, but it’s enough to miss the few days we had of 50+ degree weather. I’m perfectly ready for winter to be done. While I love sitting at home, watching the snow fall and curling up with a good book, I still have to go to Day Job, and driving in the snow is my least favorite experience.

On the plus side, since it’s March, one of my favorite people in the writing community, Ava Jae, released her debut novel, Beyond the Red, wp-1457115705727.jpgon the 1st! My pre-order came in the
mail yesterday afternoon, and I’m very excited to read it. Once I can’t up with my ever growing TBR pile, that is.

Those are just a few of the books I’ve picked up recently! I think I’ll do a book haul post sometime in the near future, maybe when I get my new bookshelves. Which I hope is soon, I’ve run out of shelf space!

Back to Beyond the Red, I’m pretty sure I’ve gushed about Ava Jae in a prior post, but she offers some amazing writing advice, and is a staple in the writing community. I highly recommend reading through her blog, Writabilty, and grabbing a copy of Beyond the Red! You can even enter to win a signed copy, plus some swag and other fun stuff, in her Twitter giveaway. So yay, fun and free book stuff!

It’s been quite a while since I’ve written anything. I finished a draft of my most recent YA story, and I put it aside to marinate for a while, and I’m finding it hard to go back to either that or to start a new story in the meantime. Part of it is, I’m sure, my depression, and another part is procrastination and fear of failure.

I’ve been debating quitting my Day Job, but with impending student loan repayments just on the horizon, and an incredible (and expensive) train trip I’m taking with my best friend JM Tuckerman, I just don’t think it’s feasible for me to quit right now. Working there drains so much out of me that when I come home, all I want to do is collapse on my bed, curl up with my puppy and sleep for 10 hours.

If only I had someone in my life to pay for a year’s worth of expenses just so that I could write all day long, sort of how Harper Lee wrote To Kill a Mockingbird.

But that’s unlikely. So, back to the work grind!