Discipline and the Newly-Published Writer

In my former life (pre-retirement), when I found the time to work on my Moochie Mockingbird stories, I’d just get behind the keyboard and “write.” I didn’t care much about characters or conflict or continuity, but I was outstanding at description and dialogue! Somehow, I did manage to have events in the proper order, but that may have been pure dumb luck. The stories weren’t very impressive.

Now I’m disciplined, albeit far from perfectly. I worry about antagonist/protagonist/plot. I follow an outline. I…whatever. I don’t flesh out my characters until the plot is finalized. I save my “color commentary” until I feel good about the story. I don’t worry about spelling or punctuation or embellishment until the very last…this is the most difficult!

My brain hurts. It doesn’t want to think this way. But I’m learning.

In order to succeed as a writer (even if marginally), I’m learning I have to work at it. But I’ve also had to learn to “tweet,” to connect on social networks, to promote myself, to format correctly…the list goes on.

Usually around suppertime every day, I drag my tired backside into the kitchen…where, thankfully, my husband is cooking. I look at him and say, “I can’t stuff another thing into my brain,” or some such thing. Then I eat quickly and return to the keyboard.

We’re getting ready to take a short three-day trip to see our kids. I debated whether I should take my laptop. Duh. I can’t stay away. Four hours in the car with nothing to do? Here are the new things I can do! Twitter, blog, Facebook, LinkedIn…and not just contributing. Reading, following, #linking, exploring groups…learning…another list goes on…

One of my children has promised me a crash course in tweeting this weekend. Another is doing a professional photograph of me. The third is my support…my cheerleader. And our one-year-old grandson is just gonna love me.  Now I know why I had children!

At the end of the weekend, I’ll be back in my little office. Doing whatever it is I do that makes my brain hurt. But I’m disciplined. I’m determined. This time I will succeed.

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Filed under Marginally Personal, The Business of Writing

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