I remember reading On Writing by Stephen King a few years back and highlighting the heck out of that book. So many quotes resonated with me.
Like this one:
“Sometimes you have to go on when you don’t feel like it, and sometimes you’re doing good work when it feels like all you’re managing is to shovel shit from a sitting position.”
― Stephen King,
Or this one:
“Optimism is a perfectly legitimate response to failure.”
― Stephen King,
And so many more…
I used to work more than 50 hours a week. It used to take me more than a hour to get to work so I would be out of the house before 7 a.m. and would not usually be back well after 7 p.m.
During that time, I wrote super duper early in the morning, in the train, on the weekends. I trained myself to write in sprints. And I wrote an entire novel in-between work and business trips and trying to stay on top of things, One, Two, Three which came out on June 26th, 2014.
But now? Now, I work part-time as an adjunct faculty. I’m home a lot more. I have a different schedule, and I am way more productive writing-wise but sometimes it feels like my writing sometimes becomes invisible.
Like it’s in a way more challenging to explain the time it takes to write. Before, I was so busy working, travelling for work, on my blackberry every few seconds, answering phone calls, organizing conferences and bigger events that people didn’t understand when I had time to think about writing a book, let alone actually write a book. I had to make the time.
I still do.
I still have to make the time. Because one can get distracted so easily. One can always find something else to do. One can always find excuses about not writing.
Writing isn’t easy. Writing takes time. Revising takes time. Editing takes time. There’s that one sentence that can take you weeks, even though the rest of the book seems easier. Writing isn’t yet supporting me and my family, financially-wise. And I know I’m lucky to be able to work part-time and have more writing-time than before. So, I need to make sure it stays a priority. It’s not only my passion, it’s not only a hobby, it’s one of my jobs.
And it makes me happy.
In a year, I wrote a novelette, a novella, and two novels. I handled designing the covers of three of those books. I handled marketing, formatting. I handled foreign translations, those covers, part of their marketing. I’ve been busy.
I still wake up before 5 a.m. during the week.
I still struggle with wondering if it’s all worth it. If I will ever make a living out of writing.
I still think writing helps me to stay sane.
I do have more time for myself. I have more time to clean the house, walk the dog, spend time with friends, cook, watch TV, read. I have more time to relax.
It’s not as chaotic time-wise that it used to be. But it doesn’t take away from the fact that writing sometimes consumes me. That it’s still hard to write. That I haven’t it all figured out.
And I think it’s okay.
Because I am a better writer now than two years ago. Because I’m still learning. Because I realize that I’m lucky to be able to dedicate more time to my writing.
Not everyone can. I wasn’t able to before. And I wouldn’t be able to if it weren’t for my husband supporting us financially at the moment.
And I’m also lucky because Stephen King was right about one more thing.
Now, time to get my ass on the chair and write (in this case, time to get my ass on the chair and face the blank page to outline)