Time for a new weekly writer’s roundup of my works-in-progress and those ready to read!
I met my goal of getting the first act to a third draft state by Friday night last week. As soon as I was done, I sent it off to my third reader. Lauren is a great writer and online friend that’s been a source of encouragement to me throughout my development of Vivian’s Last Cigarette.
I’ve really been looking forward to sending her the draft of my novel and hearing what she thinks of it. My hope is that after all of the good will she has given me, I can at least repay her with a fun read. Given that she’s very busy writing the sequel to her book Catalyst Moon: Incursion, and doing another beta read on top of mine, I’m grateful that she’s managed to find time to start reading my book-in-progress. I’m eager to hear what she thinks of it.
Insofar as the second act of the book is concerned, there has been no change in its status. The second draft has been handed over to my second reader, Jess, as of early last week. But at roughly the same time she also picked-up a terrible cold that is, in her own words, “kicking her butt”. :-( Corresponding with my friend, it sounded really dreadful and I think Jess was wise to take the weekend off to recover. She’s hopeful to get back to reads this week.
The above combination of events granted me a weekend bereft of any notes to craft further drafts with. I used this unexpected boon of free time to get to several projects in need of getting done, the first of which was finally putting away the Yuletide decorations that had overstayed their welcome.
Yes, on Saturday. March 4th…
It’s embarrassing, but my life is one without a lot of spare time at the moment. I work forty hours a week full-time at the pay-the-bills (mostly) job. I spend another eight hours commuting weekly to and from said job, and then another forty hours over the weekends and weekday evenings on writing.
That doesn’t leave me with much time extra time for socializing or other fun. Or even to sleep… I’ve become prone to dozing off during car rides when I’m not driving.
Yet such are the sacrifices I need to make to create art right now. I hope to make at least a modest living off my writing someday, but currently I’m in the stage of devoting large swaths of time to develop my craft with no monetary return. The pay-the-bills-job is a necessary time-sink to sustain a shelter and means of support.
Effectively working two full-time jobs means having to make choices with my limited resource of time. Clean house, or writing? Writing. Gaming with friends, or writing? Writing. Read a book, or writing? Writing. Watch that movie I’ve wanted to see, or writing? Writing.
“Save Gotham City, or writing?”
The hardest of all is “Spend time with my wife, or writing?”
Sometimes I feel like a terrible husband. Kim’s alone all the time, going to bed without me as I sit upstairs trying to weave dreams into words late at night. I’m absent most of her weekend doing much the same, too. Yet even with putting up with so much, she still supports me. She’s my number one fan, never complains, and I absolutely couldn’t be doing this without her. So I take some comfort that I must be doing something right as a husband to warrant such glowing love.
It’s a good thing that I love to write, because in my pursuit of doing it as a living I’ve pared-down all my other activities and interests in support of that goal. It’s been painful doing so over the past two years, but as a result I’ve stripped away a lot of habits that were holding me back. I’ve also discovered strengths I didn’t know I had, and gained glimpses of the inner essences that make me tick.
That struggle has also caused me to drift away from friendships that don’t support my dreams. If you don’t have time to care about what’s important to me, then I guess I don’t have time for you. In moving on from those relations, I’ve added new friends that share my passions.
In sum, reaching for my dreams has left me a different man. Not all of it has gone as I had expected it would, nor have all the consequences of getting to and reaching this point been pleasant.
But here I am. And I am writing.
And on that note, it’s time for me to stop blogging and get back to writing some more fiction! Take care!