Tuesday, July 22, 2014

Am I being productive...or just wasting time?

A few weeks ago, I blogged about my excitement at going to the Revision Retreat hosted by the Highlights Foundation.  I am still really excited about the retreat, though I’m also getting a little nervous now—it’s less than a month away!—and I also have a few other writing  seminars coming up now.  I signed up for the NOSCBWI fall conference in Cleveland, including a face-to-face critique.  I really love going to conferences and am happy that there is one close by that I can attend.  The talks are always informative and motivating and I just love the energy of the conferences.  It’s great to be around other writers and feed off their successes and excitement. I also wrote a piece for an exhibition with my local SCBWI chapter and signed up for a query writing seminar as well.

 It took some time to find and sign up for all of these events, and since then I’ve been feverishly working on my manuscript before turning it in over the weekend for critique.  (That last thought is almost literal—I was really sick a few weeks ago with a high fever but continued revising anyway.  Maybe that’ll be good practice for some future time when I’m a published author and have strict deadlines.  Well, a girl can dream at least.) My brain keeps telling me that I’ve been very busy and productive on the writing front.  I guess that’s true, but with all of these seminars to prepare for I’ve realized that I haven’t sat down to write any new material in quite a while.  I still have plenty of chapters to write for the current version of my manuscript—half a book still needs to be thoroughly revised actually—but I’ve been so focused on activities related to writing (that don’t actually involve much writing) that I haven’t been making any forward momentum of the manuscript.  I guess I’ve been tricking myself into thinking that I’m being productive…or maybe all of this preparation really is productive.  I’m conflicted about it, but ultimately I need to attend events like conferences and retreats so I guess I don’t have much choice in the manner.

I wonder if many people deal with these dilemmas? I can’t be the only one who fills their days with blogging, scanning the internet for upcoming writing events, reading, reading other people’s blogs, blogging about what you’re reading, tweeting, reading author/agent/editor interviews, and on and on.  Man, please tell me I’m not the only one! It’s just so easy to feel like I’m being productive without actually having to do any of that damn writing that I claim to love so much. 

Now that I’ve caught onto my brain’s very cunning tricks, I definitely plan on thwarting them and writing today.  Probably.  Just as soon as I look at a friend’s blog and read a few more tweets from my favorite authors.

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