I've been at this writing game for a few years now. Not as many as some, but definitely longer than others. My level of commitment and time to this wonderful and crazy obsession has increased steadily over the years. I'm not just writing stories for myself anymore. I'm writing, revising, submitting, going to conferences, pitching, taking online classes, attending meetings, going to workshops, moderating online workshops, blogging, twittering, facebooking (is that a verb?), networking, and entering contests.
I'm spending a lot of time writing which means I've had to cut some things from my life. Here are the necessary losses I've incurred as I've grown as a writer who is actively trying to get published:
*Regular manicures and pedicures. I only get them prior to a conference and even then I cheat cause my fingernails are so short and stubby now it is a "why bother to use any other color than clear" kind of moment for me.
*Scrapbooking. I used to scrapbook once a week with a friend. I'd go to the store and buy paper and notions and plan out beautiful pages. Most of my scrapbooks have a lot of writing in them. Scrapbooking is my first foray back into writing. I still drool over paper and make cutesy things but I don't fill entire scrapbooks anymore. That's why the Mac and making albums online was invented.
*Long lunches and shopping with friends. I used to go for long walks and talks up north with a dear friend. Now? Well, I'd walk and talk still, but we also used to go for lunch once a week and explore the area together at least twice a month along with our walks. Now? Well, I'd schedule it, but it would be less frequent due to all the writing I am doing.
*Long talks on the phone. I let the phone ring till the answering machine picks up. I still have long talks with long distance friends, but I tend to use my walk time as talk time now. I multi-task. There are two or three people that I will drop all my work for if they call. They know who they are. But for the most part, I am typing on my computer.
*Uber volunteer mom duties at church and at the darling daughter's school. Now I keep it to a minimum. In fact, I stopped going to church on a regular basis just to avoid getting sucked into the volunteer vortex. I know. Selfish. But I still read my bible, pray, and love God. I just don't want to get stuck in "Martha Land" again. And those of you who read and study the bible know exactly who Martha is--she was that sister in the kitchen doing all the cooking and cleaning while her sister Mary was sitting at the feet of Jesus loving Him and adoring Him. I guess I am "Mary" now. I can love and adore Him at home or when I am outside walking in His glorious world.
*Putting up with negative people. If someone isn't positive or edifying in my life, I tend to cut that person out pretty quick. I need positivity. I crave it. This business is tough enough without having a Negative Nellie whining about life or putting my dreams down. I don't have patience for that kind of stuff anymore. Course this could just be because I am getting older and pickier about my friendships. There's only so much time in the day. Why waste it with someone who isn't fun or positive?
Those are the main things that I have given up. They were necessary losses because I had to cut them in order to make room for the new growth in my life. I think the most important thing I weeded out was the impact of negative people.
So what about you? What necessary losses have you incurred to pursue your dream?
Thursday, November 18, 2010
I'm an author of sensual, sizzling contemporary romances with dark emotional edge where two lost souls find each other and discover home. I enjoy finding the silly in the serious and giving my characters unique ways to find each other and discover home. When I'm not writing, you can find me exploring my world, cooking fabulous food, and desperately seeking a corkscrew. You can contact me at firstname.lastname@example.org