Shifting gears

My goal this week was to write 4000 words on my novel. How many did I produce? Less than 2000.

What went wrong?

Well, last weekend was extra busy, since I had to spend time on some interview questions for my contest win at the Malahat Review. Also, Eric was away for a few days, and single parenting is obviously a lot more work. So I started the week already tired.

Monday was great; I wrote 1200 words. Then I hit a wall. On Tuesday and Wednesday, I wrote a grand total of almost 700 words, and each sentence was painful and difficult. I felt scattered, exhausted, discouraged.

My kids have March Break next week and I knew they’d be home this Friday (today) for a P.Ed. day, so I felt a lot of pressure to make Thursday count, especially after those two crappy writing days in a row.

But instead of forging ahead, I stopped. Reconsidered. I thought about how much effort it would take for me to get into the right headspace to work on my book, only to put the laptop away for the following 10 days. And I changed gears.

Instead of opening my draft in Scrivener, I pulled up a short story and worked on that. It felt fantastic! I was reenergized, able to focus, produce solid work and even enjoy the writing process. By the end of the day, I had a solid draft to send out for feedback from my writing group, which meets in mid-March. Sometimes a change is as good as a rest.

3 thoughts on “Shifting gears”

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