By Lisabet Sarai
There's rarely a time when I don't have a current work in progress (WIP). Unfortunately, that progress often proceeds at a snail's pace. I'm ashamed to admit that some weeks, I don't manage to add a single word to my WIP. That's primarily because the time I've allocated to my life as Lisabet Sarai gets consumed by other writing and marketing activities, which frequently have deadlines: dealing with edits of submitted manuscripts, updating my website, soliciting reviews, scrutinizing contracts, monitoring my lists and email, and yes, penning blog posts.
This weekend is a prime example. I'd intended to spend all of today working on Rajastani Moon, my current major project. The book is a light-hearted attempt to cram as many sub-genres into one story as possible. It's a steam punk-Bollywood-shape shifter-BDSM-ménage-Rubenesque erotic romance. I figure somebody's going to like it! I'm about 9K into the tale so far, but it has been languishing on my hard drive for more than two weeks as other items took priority, most especially the edits for my recently released novella Bangkok Noir and my upcoming novel Quarantine.
So I thought that maybe I'd be able to manage 2000-3000 words today in my multi-genre opus today. But I didn't get the Grip topic until late yesterday, so I couldn't write this post then. And I just realized that I need to get my newsletter out, because next month my newsletter has to be released early to promote my Quarantine blog tour, and I'd like to have close to a month between newsletters, so as not to aggravate readers. Then, yesterday I received email from one of my publishers, reminding me that I'd committed to produce a free story for them. The story's not due until the beginning of July, though, so I maybe I don't have to worry about it today. I thought I had a guest blog post due, too. However, the blog host rescheduled until August. That's a relief!
After I finish this blog, then, and my newsletter, maybe I'll still have some time for my Rajah brothers and my Victorian secret agent. Especially if I cut this short!
I usually work on only one significant WIP at a time. My notebook contains many story ideas, but for some reason I have to tackle them one at a time. I don't really know any other way to do it. I'm paralyzed enough by one WIP. More than one would drown me in guilt.
Sometimes, aside from the non-writing interruptions above, I'll break into a longer work to pen a quick short story – especially when a deadline nears. Actually I have trouble motivating myself to sit down and slog away at a longer book. My best tales are those which I write quickly, I think. When the excitement cools, it's difficult to maintain the motivation.
Is all this other activity really procrastination, then? Maybe, but if so, I suffer for it, emotionally. I'm all too aware that “real” writers add to their WIPs every single day. And I want to write, I really do. When I get into the groove, there's nothing like it – except maybe sex.
So enough of this! Off to Rajastan!