Monday, August 19, 2013

When Your Dream Becomes Your Day Job

I've heard it from so many authors. I thought I was prepared for it. I even thought I had plans in place to combat any problems. And yet, as I sit down at my computer and watch the calendar tick down towards November (release date is tentatively set for November 4th) I find myself at a loss.
Writing now has deadlines. It has quality control requirements. I can't decide to "tackle that scene tomorrow" because tomorrow is the deadline for getting my blurb out to marketing professionals for assessment.
In short, my passion has become my job. And even though I wouldn't choose anything different, it doesn't change the fact that I now have to be creative on tap.
That's a unique challenge.
As I said at the beginning, I'd been warned that this would happen. But apparently knowing this was coming hasn't changed my brain's tendency to panic every morning when I sit down at the computer. Instead of losing myself in the story, I'm preoccupied with whether or not my edit notes will come back on time. Or wondering if I remembered to include that crucial scene in the new version which has been so heavily revised it's almost a different book. Or whether I'll have the final edits done in time to get the manuscript to reviewers...
My point? My point is, just like me, your day will come when writing is a job, with all the responsibilities and restrictions that entails. And now that you've read this, you'll be forewarned too.
So when the day comes... Just don't give up. Sure, it takes discipline and commitment. But it's worth it.
It's worth the hundreds of hours of practice and study. It's worth the thousands of hours of writing. It's worth pushing over this final hurdle. Because on the other side is a reader reaching out to pick up your book and read it. Someone who's going to share your world with you.
This is the time that makes or breaks your book (my book!).
Keep going. Don't shy away from the hard work. It's worth it.
Your Turn: Have you experienced times when writing is a job and it's hard to find inspiration or be creative to deadline? Any tips for making it through the fire?

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