Friday, October 18, 2013

Staying accountable, and keeping the dream alive

It's been almost six months since my last post. In that time, I finished neither my academic book nor my novel. This leaves me with a series of questions.

Am I a failure? 
No, no, no. I refuse to believe this. A [wo]man's reach should exceed her grasp, and I've finished about 70% of that academic book and maybe 1/4 of the novel. If I hadn't set absurdly unrealistic goals to start with, I might be feeling great about this progress right now, instead of beating myself up about it. 

Will I ever finish? 
Yes, yes, yes. YES. Yes. 

Will I be setting additional arbitrary deadlines?
Well, I probably shouldn't. But, yes. I will. 

I want to get a manuscript for the academic book to the publisher by year's end ... let's say January 7th to be kind to myself, as that's the first day of the next academic session.

 And, I promised a full draft of the novel to my writing group by mid-December (um, year's end ... a very busy year's end).  

Sabbatical is over, so I'm doing all of this writing while teaching and serving on way too many infuriatingly inefficient committees. So, it's now more important than ever (!!) to remind myself: 

1. I GET to write. I don't HAVE to write. This is a gift. This is a choice. The books could be a legacy. This is all worth it. 

2. No [wo]man is an island. My writerly friends are such inspirations. They are trucking along toward their goals (articles, dissertations, novels, memoirs). We are all in this together. 

Back to the grindstone. Whoosh! 

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