I just finished reading the first of four books that I got for Christmas. I took the first book with me on a trip that ruined into a detour to my childhood home because my father, who still lives there, had had a stroke. I didn’t end up cracking the book open until my flight back home a month later. I looked forward to getting back to some normalcy, to writing again, marketing my book more. But when I got back, I found that I had a hard time focusing on my “career”. I sometimes wonder how I ever held down a full time office job when there’s always so much to do at home. Rather than grabbing my computer first thing, I thought it was more important to address some issues with the house. I donned my work clothes and spent day after day outside or on a ladder, doing home repairs. The couple of days I told myself it would take to finish up a couple of tasks, turned into weeks.
When I couldn’t shut the voice up in my head that screams at me to write, I sat down with my computer and started the drilling and research for ways to market my book. It took a few days but I was able to get my book requests out to several agencies. I’d been given a direction to pursue by a friend who suggested I seek out psychological organizations to recommend my book for professionals or to have them review it for inclusion to their magazines. I felt good after tracking them all down and submitting queries to them. Feeling like I then had the justification to put my computer down, I did so and went back to work on the house.
A week later, I received an email from a local book store that they wanted to carry my book. I was so excited that I put my work clothes aside and took a stack of books to the store to drop off. When I grabbed my work clothes again the very next day, I questioned whether I was avoiding writing. I looked back to when I stopped writing and thought about my dad in the hospital. The entire time I was there with him, I wanted to write, to document it all, not just to have the event chronicled but because I was going through so many different feelings and reactions, that I wanted to vent. With a small computer given to me on loan, I wrote a blog entry just to get myself going and once finished, I started on the events of my father’s stroke. It was still sitting and waiting on me to finish. There it was. I didn’t want to finish it. I didn’t want to go back to it and have to fill in the remaining few days that I was with him before returning home. So, I did the next best thing. I picked my book back up. I’d gotten about half way through it on the plane ride back home so I didn’t have that far to go to finish it.
I’ve found that the more I write, the more I look at other people’s writing differently. I notice things more. There’s little things like font and layout and then bigger things like character introduction, grammar and punctuation, scenery descriptions and layout. I find myself pausing at times and thinking about the author, which, I’ve actually always done but I tend to do it a bit more often now. It becomes more of a relationship between author and reader as if they’re sharing something with me. I love that connection, imaginary as it may be. I ended up finishing the first book in between doing house chores and repairs and decided it was time to get back to my writing. I finished the story of my father’s stroke and opened up my latest book to continue it.
I found an old friend on Facebook, made a couple of random Tweets on twitter only because it’s required in order not to lose followers. I checked my reviews – one new one. I checked my sales channels. I wrote some restaurant reviews. I researched a few home improvement items I want. I read a few articles about people that I went to school with. So many young people dying. We are still young. I called it a day. I didn’t want to write about my life, the life that was continuing on when so many don’t. The following day, I wrote a few paragraphs, researched a few contests and wrote a bit more. I think I’m getting back on track to writing. And I’m excited about cracking open a new book.