Now Playing: BLANK SPACE by I Prevail
Just Read: MR. MERCEDES by Stephen King--Very enjoyable! King is so good at characterization. I read this and couldn't help but take notes.
Reading Now: WHITEOUT by Ken Follett
Wow! Is July over already? This might seriously have been the fastest month of my life. I went to New York for a wedding, Myrtle Beach for a family reunion, moved 90 miles west, started a new job, helped my fiance prepare for school to start in two weeks, booked people for my own wedding, had an engagement party, took a graduate level statistics class . . . AH!
When in there was I supposed to write stories?
The thing is, the pros do it. That's the part that irks me, and I think a lot of other amateur writers too. You hear professional writers give advice to the younger generation, they say things like "If I waited until I had time to write I'd never write anything at all!" or "I write every day, including my birthday and Christmas." Well, I think that's awesome, and I strive to have that routine and count myself their peer one day.
It does come with certain social sacrifices, though. And as a 25-year-old dude with a lot of fun and amazing things going on, I'm not sure I want to give those things up yet. I know, I know--this is a dangerous way to think if I'm serious about being a writer, because while today it's a new job and moving apartments and putting furniture together, tomorrow it'll be going to kids' baseball games or walking the dog or whatever. There's ALWAYS something to do besides writing.
Balance is the elusive key, I've come to believe. I want to write. More than I want to be great at anything, I want to be great at writing. That takes dedication and time and work. But I'm not going to kill myself to get there. I'm going to keep working and trudging through the mud, but when life comes first it comes first, and I can't beat myself up about it. Because I was beating myself up--I was feeling guilty about how much writing I wasn't doing; for the first time in a long time I didn't reach my W1S1 goals this month. But that's okay. It's a new month now, with new things on the horizon. The storm has passed, and the writer can poke his head out of his den and sniff the clean air.
And speaking of new things coming, an end to my publication drought is upon me! On August 15, a story of mine will appear in BEYOND: SPACE OPERA, a collection of short stories about adventures in space. The collection is edited by Milo James Fowler and features several other great stories by wonderful authors. My story in it is called "The Lion's Den," originally published in Ray Gun Revival magazine, now closed. It'll be good to see my name in print again, and will probably light a fire under me. I look forward to that inspiration, and I'll post details on how to get your hands on it when the date draws nearer.