Join my weekly Radio Show

Tuesday, July 5, 2011

Writing Takes a Holiday

It IS vacation time, and here in Sunny Florida it began long before the thermometers topped 90 degrees. However, my brain seems to have decided that after my last live speaking event it too was taking a holiday. I can't seem to get myself motivated. There is no amount of prodding, calendar session planning, deadline setting and to-do list rituals that work right now. Nothing.

I have found myself missing important meetings, setting reminders on my phone for *very* important consults and meetings I can NOT miss, and using sticky-notes to paper my computer and office desk. 

All I want to do is go to the beach, enjoy sunsets such as this one shot by my daughter and enjoy other spectacular views from local restaurants and other places we frequent during the hot months. Work? Really? Must I? As a self-employed publisher, author and podcast host there are schedules I must keep year round.

As a normal schedule-holic I consult my schedule daily and usually tackle it with gusto, however due to the nature of my January through May schedule I was on overload. Possible, even for me. In my writing career spanning 19 years I have not experienced anything like this! I have discussed this phenomenon with others, especially new writers. I often hear people say "I don't have the time to write," or "I can't fit writing into my schedule."

A serious author who is goal-oriented can always fit writing into the schedule. Right? That is the ideal. However in real life the ideal doesn't always pan out. 

So, what am I doing to nix this holiday monster? First of all, I did take a much needed break. I have enjoyed the beach with unplanned company, my children and grandchildren. I have purposely left my computer home and didn't even check my phone or emails there. Of course I did check my emails daily...but only to put out fires if any.

This time away has encouraged me to relax and unwind, unhindered. It has allowed my fast-paced mind a time to slow down and T*H*I*N*K...  I realized I needed to re-organize, de-clutter and regroup before I began the next round of work related projects. And declutter I did! I shredded pages I no longer needed, I went through files on my desk and in my office. It feels great knowing where everything is and I am off to a fresh start when I begin my next project. This is not work in the sense of making important decisions or planning. However it has a wonderful outcome of allowing me to see that clean lovely space, like the top of my desk and it gives me a sense of happiness. I've listened to seminars and read so many books on organization in the past. The great tips on productivity only work if you have an organized space, so that is where I'm beginning.

I feel in the external de-clutter process the interior process is slowly becoming de-cluttered as well. It has been a time to think about my goals for the future. For the most part I truly enjoy working, I am passionate about what I do and feel it is led by God. While a crisis or two lately has challenged that peace I know that in the future I will emerge stronger and more Christ-focused in all that I am doing from here on out! With the de-clutter has come a time of re-evaluation and slowly that vision is unfolding.

In the next few blog posts I will discuss how you can regroup after a busy season and ways to re-evaluate your focus. Treating your writing as a business is important if you want to succeed in the sense of seeing your book in print. Treating yourself and your life away from your work with equal importance is also mandatory. The key is finding a balance and making it work in your life.


  1. I would love the luxury of time off, but alas, bills call. I don't think I've had more than a few hours in the last several years. Every time I think I'm in a position to rest, something always comes up that demands my immediate attention. Usually, it's a gargantuan, unexpected bill or Gundar, the techno gremlin come to destroy my computer files. I'm thankful that insomnia allows me to get more done in a day! I need the extra hours. ;D

  2. So glad you had a rest! I've been amazed at what all you've had on your plate - finishing one thing to start another...

    Hmm.... kinda sounds like something *I* do... :P This past spring, I finally was on so many deadlines (your UHSE included) that I had to make a list and be sure not to add anything to it.

    There were one or two things I added because they were too great to pass by, but all in all - it was wonderful. I worked better, saw what really mattered business wise vs. what was a time waster. (Facebook??)

    I even was able to say NO to a request - which felt really good. Cheers for you!!!

  3. Funny. I been doing the same type of work (decluttering the desk). For me, it only took a day until I was back at projects with renewed gusto.

    Of course, these new projects are "your fault." ;o) You put the ebook idea in my head, which now has a new name and is under way~ along with 2 free craft ebooks, and 2 ebooks with momma/homeschool topics. What have you done, Felice?! (Thanks for the impetus, by the way.)

    Can't wait to hear what you have to say next!