Sniffles and yawns

First of all, I wanted to say a huge thank you to everyone who has left me votes on my flash fiction – and an extra thank you to those of you who sent me separate emails to tell me how much you enjoyed it! I stepped well out of my comfort zone on this one in both length and genre and was told more than once that I should expand it into a longer work. So thank you, thank you, thank you! The contest is on for another couple of weeks…I’m doing well, but if you know anyone else who might enjoy it and want to send a vote my way, please pass it along.   (oops. Contest is now closed. But thank you!)

I haven’t done as much writing of my own as I’d like to lately, other than that flash fic. It’s been difficult because I’m used to trying to cram in writing every single spare second, and I do believe that I should do at least a little bit everyday. The problem at the moment is what to work on. Draft three is still out with most of the test readers. I’ve received full feedback from one but I can’t really move ahead on anything until I’ve heard from everyone. Similarly,  I had my second chapter (or rather, the first three-quarters of it) critiqued in class last week. Overall, the reviews were very positive (yay!) and the most common request was to provide “more”. As for the other suggestions, those still have to wait until I’ve heard back from the test readers. I’ve started playing a bit with Book 2 in my head, but aside from a few jotted notes I haven’t been able to write much down for it. I don’t have the full story mapped out in my mind just yet and I’m not exactly one for making huge outlines either. I have a short story that I’ve been working on here and there but it stalled out a bit. I reopened it today to take a look and I may make another go at that pretty soon – perhaps I’ll provide that as my next piece to be critiqued in my class. Having something other than my novel to look at should throw everyone off.

So what have I been doing? Well, a lot of editing. I finished up editing manuscript one for my friend and have now started on manuscript two. I also have critiquing for my class, so it isn’t as though I have nothing to do. And then of course there’s Baby D, who has decided that, since I have a really bad head cold, now would be an excellent time to stop sleeping through the night.

*headdesk*

I’ve been very badly wanting to write for the past several days, even to take a shot at the outline of Book 2 or reconnect with that short, but this head cold coupled with lack of sleep has not been making it easy. Mostly what I want to do is sleep. I’m trying not to worry about my lack of writing-productivity, but it’s not been easy, especially as I’m pretty sure my “me-time” during the days is about to get shortened due to a number of factors. I might have to go back to the 5am consideration…though this morning Baby D was up at 4:30, so that won’t necessarily help.

I managed to write through the summer holidays with Kid A and Baby D at home…surely I can find a way to keep writing now. You know, once I can breathe through my nose again.

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Doing a little dance whilst I hide under the bed

Draft Two is finished! I’m not entirely certain whether I should be dancing around the room or hiding under my bed. Well, I probably don’t need to hide under the bed until I send it to readers so, for now, I’ll do a quiet little dance in my head.

Finishing this draft did not go as planned. Originally I’d hoped to finish it by last Friday and I probably could have except I started getting paranoid about some dialogue. One of my characters speaks somewhat more formally than the rest (he’s royalty, leave him alone) and I started worrying that I’d made his dialogue TOO formal. So in typical writer-who-is-not-willing-to-finish-her-draft fashion, I went back through every bit of his dialogue to make sure it sounded natural. In doing this I discovered that I don’t actually use a lot of dialogue. And so, by the end of Friday night, I’d checked up on half of it. I figured I’d be done by the weekend then.

Nope. Weekend didn’t go at all as planned. I was supposed to attend a friend’s wedding shower, spend the remainder of the weekend with my parents and get home relatively early on Sunday. Instead, I went to the shower, came home, we decided to go to my parents’ place for Sunday only instead. Any writing time I would have had on Saturday night was taken up by Baby D and his decision to stay up until midnight and on Sunday morning the kids let us sleep in (of course on a morning when we wanted to be up early), so we didn’t get to my parents’ place until the afternoon. And then we got home late. I got a little bit done last night but otherwise my writing productivity for the weekend was terrible. But this morning, lo and behold, Baby D has slept in. And I not only got through the rest of the dialogue, I also went back over what I’d looked at last night because I wasn’t sure I’d done a very good job.

And so, it is now 9am and Baby D is still sleeping and draft two is done. As a friend just told me: “there’s no escaping it now.”

And as I told her: “Gah.”

I wonder how many days it will take me to ramp up the courage to send it out to readers? 😉

So now I guess it’s on to working on that short and ramping up my productivity with editing my friend’s manuscript. I also have writing class and my writing group starting up again next week, so I don’t know that my workload is actually going to decrease at all but I do feel pretty awesome to have passed that milestone.

And on that note, Baby D is up. Perfect timing.

The baby and the book

First thing first…many of you might have suspected why I’ve been so remiss about updating recently and you’d be right…Baby 2 has arrived! He was five days late and HUGE – 9 pounds, 4 oz. Since everyone told us he was likely to be born three weeks early and he was nearly a week late, he’s already acting like a one month old, raising his head, making cooing noises and almost back to his birth weight in just a week’s time. Labour went as smoothly as labour can and for that I’m singing the praises of my incredible midwives (unlike the midwives I had for the birth of Kid 1 whom I also had some choice words for). Kid 1 is getting used to the whole thing and we’re all re-adjusting our lives around our new little love. This has meant that there has been little time for anything non baby-related aside from eating and sleeping…and even those are now technically baby-related.

Work on the WIP has ground to an almost-halt. I have to say almost because, despite the severe lack of sleep lately, it continues to percolate in the back of my head and glare at me from my computer on a daily basis, accusing me of not working on it. Originally I had planned to give it more time…wait until we are on a semi-regular schedule and the little one is taking semi-regular naps and hopefully I’d then have the presence of mind to work on it more significantly. And that’s still the plan. But I also have concern with summer holidays creeping up soon, which will put Kid 1 home with me every day and will likely cut my writing time down to nearly nothing between the two of them. So, for now, I have started a very slow edit – just one or two pages a day. That way, once I do have a little more time to devote to it, I’ll have at least made a dent and won’t suddenly feel pressured to try to work on ten pages a day or something when I’m still likely to be juggling schedules and sleep deprivation.

As this post has now been sitting on my computer this morning I think I’ll just post it, rather than trying to come up with some sort of witty wrap-up.