Just Write

I have made a goal for myself in regards to my newest work in progress. I intend to have 150 pages completed by September tenth.

There. It’s in print for everyone to see.

The problem is, 150 pages by September tenth is totally unrealistic with everything that’s going on in my life. I spend four afternoons a week visiting my dad at the nursing home. I have to run my mom to her appointments and to shop. I have a program to prepare for one of my writers’ groups. I have a vacation trip to plan. Not to mention actually going on vacation.

The reason I picked September tenth is because that is the end of all my vacation time. Not that teaching yoga a couple nights a week takes much time away from writing, but it seems like, since I’m cutting back to one night a week during August, that I should have more time to write. Illusion. The three hours that I would be in class will not (most likely) be used instead to write. Read, yes. Write, no.

The reason I picked 150 pages is because I knew how unattainable that goal is. The only way I can come close is to write like mad and STOP TWEAKING AND FIDDLING. Yes, I’ve fallen into the trap of trying to make the first draft perfect. The first draft is to get the ideas down on paper. Perfection—or something resembling it—comes during the revisions. I know that, but I’ve still been fixing this sentence and that idea and the other description. So, pressed to meet my goal I must now JUST WRITE.

I could have said 100 pages. That, I think I could do. But because I think I can do it, I’d be back to fussing with yesterday’s work and last week’s chapter. No. I will have 150 (not 100) pages done by September tenth.

Considering what I’ve already written and that I usually get to write about four days out of the week, I calculate that I need to get six pages completed each day to meet my goal. Or find time to write one or two more days a week. Today I wrote five pages. I thought it was only going to be two, but I let my email stack up this afternoon and wrote instead, firing off three more pages. It’s not my quota, but it’s better than two pages.

I’ll keep you posted on my progress. Or lack of it. For the record, I’m on page 34. Only 116 more to go.

And then there's the rest of the book...


Kristine said…
Go, Annette, go! I have all the faith in the world that you'll meet your goal. Good luck!

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