Well, it’s Monday. And this is not the first part of the short story I promised you.
It’s not a great surprise to me that I didn’t meet my deadline. If you look back to the beginning of my blog, you’ll see how long it took me to condition myself to post every day, how hard a habit it was to build, and I expected nothing less from this.
I’m doing something new. I’m doing something difficult. Temporary failure is expected.
Here was Plan A for last week:
Monday: Write. Aim for 1,000 words.
Tuesday: Write. Breathe. Aim for another 1,000 words. Probably consider starting over, because that has been my problem when trying to write something longer than 1,000 words. Do not give into that impulse.
Wednesday: Write. Aim for another 1,000 words. Overcome the urge to start over. Feel accomplished at the end of the day.
Thursday: Write. Aim to finish the story.
Friday: Write the next installment of Farther. Either actually finish the short story, or, if it’s already wrapped up, ignore it completely.
Saturday: Write my piece of The Legal Theft Project. Reread the short story. Mark for edits.
Sunday: Write a Gwendoogle post. Edit the short story. Revel. Indulge in a little nikhedonia, my favorite type of hedonism.
Here is what actually happened last week, which we will grudgingly call Plan Z:
Monday: Take a break. Write nothing. Listen to Take a Break (from Hamilton the Musical) several times in a row. Realize how easily a parody called Bake a Cake could be written. Consider writing those lyrics. Consider baking a cake.
Tuesday: Take a break. Discover a new historical drama on Netflix and binge-watch like it’s an Olympic sport. Win a gold medal.
Wednesday: Feel bad about not writing for the last two days. Sit down to write a short story. Write my part of the Legal Theft Project and a Gwendoogle post instead.
Thursday: Spend four hours writing nine hundred words. Feel the creative panic coming. Ignore it. Go to sleep.
Friday: Spend another four hours simultaneously trying to talk myself out of starting over and writing another eight hundred words. Begin to realize that I’m going to miss my deadline.
Saturday: Grab the first paragraph and start over. Feel both a lot better, and a lot worse about this whole process. Convince myself that a superhuman feat tomorrow could still give me a story to post on Monday.
Sunday: Go to church. Relax. Actually think clearly for an hour or two. After lunch, start pulling out all the old writing tricks to help put words on paper: Write in a new location. Write with other people in the room. Write by hand. Write the scenes in reverse order. Thus, end the day feeling fairly accomplished, but with an incomplete piece of writing which lacks a beginning instead of an end. Realize that you can’t post any of it on Monday. Sigh.
Now, it’s a new Monday.
Let’s give Plan A another shot.