by Hilde Garcia
I hate deadlines.
The panic that ensues when I know one is fast approaching. How I start to stress because of all the stuff in my way, mostly the laundry.
And yet, I seem to meet them all, even the late Sunday night scramble to post.
I have no excuses now. The house is quiet. Everyone’s asleep, even the dog. The laundry is done. My desk is cleared. No dishes in the sink. Today, I spent the whole day avoiding this post, so the garage and office are spotless of clutter, as a result, and I finally put away the Halloween decorations.
Talk about a now what! I should be jumping at the chance to post, to write, perchance to say something of substance, but sadly, I am more blocked than if I had put 8 loads of laundry in my way intentionally.
And why is that? I will tell you. Because I finished my novel. I revised it several times. I locked myself in a hotel room for 4 days to get through the edits and the polish and then I sent it off and I met my self-imposed deadline.
And then I found myself asking myself, “Now what, lady? You are out of excuses.”
Yep, I am. I did what I said I was going to do and then I hit a slump. The waiting place.
Sigh. The clutter in my mind doesn’t go away. It only makes me crazy because I can’t seem to find any type of organizational system from The Container Store to make it neat and tidy, like my novel ended up being when I finished it.
I know I should be writing something else. I do have some ideas of what that topic could be, but none of them have grabbed me like my first novel, my first love. My biggest fear is that I am a one hit wonder. I will be a hit, no question, my novel is good, but is that all I have? What is next for me? How do I even start anew?
Beats me, if I know.
Is it because this story hasn’t flown the coop yet and I am waiting for some type of validation that may never come? Or if it comes, what does that mean to me? Do I revise more and focus on that book before I can move on to a new one?
All my author pals tell me they understand and feel the same, but they have tons of ideas in the works, several published books out, and are always writing. I can't see that being my reality.
I teach. I manage the household. I drive kids to cheer and football, but I do write a lot in my head… while I drive… don’t worry, I watch the road.
So let’s start a conversation. I am pretty sure I have some soul mates out there who understand the panic.
What DO we do when we finish a novel and have to move on? How do we do it? How do you get the hook that gets you going? How do you conquer the pre-published blues?
To quote Frasier Crane, “I’m listening…”
And check out some sites/ blogs I read tonight to help me figure out what to do. Seems that I have many kindred spirits. But now I must go because I have a cupcake waiting for me. (#10 of 10 Ways to Stay Sane.)