Decisions, decisions, decisions!
We all face a plethora of decisions, every day of our lives; no matter the job, no matter the circumstance; and actually it’s more of a plague of INdecision rather than decision; an inability to choose between two or more directions that lay open before you.
Mine at the moment certainly isn’t an earth shattering choice. Actually, I simply can’t decide where to take the direction of the fifth Drifter Series book. I’m stuck at a certain point with two main characters and a villain, and can’t decide where to go from here.
It’s just a temporary case of writer’s block.
What led me to this writer’s block…aahh, these are the choices behind the choices.
You see, being an author is a wonderful thing. The life-opportunities that writing presents to me and my family are something that makes being an author something I’d really like to pursue as a career.
But that’s where the cascade of decisions begins.
It reminds me of when I decided to open my own brewery/restaurant twenty+ years ago. I had a few decent beer recipes and some experience in the restaurant business and I figured that was enough to get my feet under me.
I was only off by a little.
Working in a restaurant environment is nothing like ‘running’ one, and having a great beer recipe, or a few killer entrée ideas, is only a fraction of what’s involved in turning a restaurant into a success. In other words, the ‘business’ side of the restaurant business.
Likewise, the writing is only a small fraction of what it takes to even be a semi-successful author. There’s fitting in the time to write around other bothersome life-type-things like work (a real job), and family. Then there’s the constant need of self-promotion and getting (and keeping) your ‘name’ out there. In other words, the ‘business’ side of the writing business.
I also have this ongoing problem of setting arbitrary deadlines for myself, and placing what too often turns out to be unrealistic expectations in the hearts of my readers.
I would love for the fifth Drifter Series book to be out by the end of February (like I promised back in November). But that just ain’t gonna happen. Oh sure, I could dash out another couple hundred pages and say, “There! Done!” But I’ve come to care about these characters, just as I know that my readers have, and I want to treat them with the respect they deserve. Not to mention treating my faithful readers with the respect they deserve.
So, Drifter #5 WILL get done, and it WILL be a great story (at least it is in my mind…it’s getting it on to the page that seems to be the hold-up).
But I truly believe that placing this looming deadline in my near-future is only hindering the process of putting idea to page, and I don’t want to do that. I don’t want to do that to me. I don’t want to do that to my characters. And, I don’t want to do that to you.
What I’m trying to say is this…
Slowing down, letting life unfold, being in the moment instead of constantly setting up dominoes for a moment in the future that might never happen: I’m finding that rest, and room, and peace, and planning (even planning for times of rest and room and peace) are good things in life, not empty spaces that need to be filled.
“There’s a specific kind of motion sickness afflicting you and me…this particular illness is an addiction to movement; a relentless fixation on activity, a persistent compulsion to feel as though we are productive. It is the perpetual drive to more and greater and faster and better that propels us through the furious blur of our everyday—and causes us to miss a good deal of it.”
Guilty as charged, and I think many of us, if we’re honest, are just as ‘sick’ as John claims.
I constantly need to remind myself that I am not defined by my accomplishments; by the day job I have; by the amount of books I’ve written…or even by when they’re published; by the sales figures those books rack up; or, by how many ‘likes’ my posts receive or my pithy Facebook comments get.
I am beloved by my God, simply because of who I am.
I am beloved by my wife and family, simply because of who I am.
I’ve already ‘won’. What do I have to further accomplish?
And for any of you who’ve read this far…Know that you, too, are loved. Know that you are accepted. Just because of the simple fact that you are you. And you are the only you that will ever be.
I think that’s quite an accomplishment!