Wednesday, 16 July 2014

Rewards

After feeling quite crappy for the past few weeks, I've been cheered up by some rewards for my hard work. The big news is that I received an email from a literary magazine, saying they want to include my story in their October issue! I will give details when it's actually published, but I don't want to jinx it; they asked me to confirm that the story hasn't been published elsewhere and that I accept their terms and conditions (it hasn't and I do!) and said they will send a more detailed email, but I've no idea if anything can/will go wrong. It might be unlikely, but I would rather keep quiet until it's a dead cert. Needless to say, I am thrilled.

If all goes well, this means that I can tick off another of my New Year's Resolutions: to get published. Technically, I've written some columns for a local newspaper so have technically been published, but I meant the resolution to refer to my fiction. Getting some Fabulous Rejections has been encouraging, but getting an acceptance makes the hassle of submitting work and the disappointment of form rejections worth the effort.

I'm also feeling pretty pleased with myself because I managed to run 5 miles on Sunday. I did it on my treadmill and was incredibly slow, but as I'm very overweight and struggled to run for 10 minutes at the start of this year, I'm happy with my progress. It also earned me a reward: I allowed myself to buy a book! I'm getting Bark by Lorrie Moore, which has been on my wishlist since before it came out.

Rewards reassure me that I'm on the right track to achieving my goals. They also motivate me to work harder and achieve more. Rewards from other people, that are out of my control, are awesome. They give me a great buzz. However, giving myself rewards is also important; it reminds me that I'm progressing (even if others don't notice or care) and feels pretty damn good!

Saturday, 5 July 2014

I've Lost My Mojo!

I've been writing only in dribs and drabs for the past month. Even when I came up with an interesting idea for a short story, the spark failed to ignite. It's waiting in the wings, like a hopeful understudy. I once read that writer's block indicates either a problem with the material, or a problem with the writer. I'm not sure whether or not I should be pleased that the problem is definitely me!

I've been feeling more depressed. Don't get me wrong; I'm nowhere near the depths of my worst episodes of depression. I just feel empty and less motivated. I'm doing my best to ride it out and do things that help, like exercising and focusing on other stuff, but it's still difficult. That's one of the most annoying things about depression and the hardest to understand: even when you've experienced worse in the past, you feel like you can't fight through the fog of your current depression.

I honestly do feel like I've lost my mojo. Plus saying 'I've lost my mojo' in an Austin Powers mockney accent makes me smile! I'm not sure how to get it back, but I'm trying to figure it out. In the meantime, I'm nearing the end of my bookkeeping course, so I'm focusing on completing my end-of-course assessment rather than my writing. Nothing involving numbers comes easily to me (except sudoku, but that's really just logic), so wish me luck!