Tuesday, 19 August 2014

Forget Recharging — I Need a Reboot!

I've spent a month doing very little, so why do I still feel tired and lacklustre? I'm supposed to be recharging, but my battery is still almost empty. My motivation is low, as is my mood in general, and I'm frustrated because I ought to be doing more writing.

I wish I could reboot. I'd revert to the settings I had a few months ago, when I was enthusiastic and productive. I keep telling myself that if I want to be successful — in writing and other areas in my life — I have to put in the work and take steps towards my goals. Trouble is, taking action involves more than good intentions...

It's been a tricky week: my puppy was neutered a week and a half ago and on Saturday, his supposedly empty scrotum had swollen to the size of a large apple. We took him to the vet and she was amazed that he was so lively, since his temperature was a few degrees above normal. He has an infection and had to be put on an antibiotic drip for a few hours. They drained the scrotum too and it's getting smaller as he continues a course of antibiotics. He doesn't try to lick it, which is just as well because he chews the cone-shaped collar that is supposed to stop him licking, but he's a Springer Spaniel and stopping him from jumping and running around is impossible. Suffice to say, I'm a little stressed!

But that's no excuse. I've been wasting time on TV and iPad games instead of writing. I have a few projects I should be working on, but I've done nothing except think about them a little. I wish I knew how to give myself a kick up the arse — all I've managed to do is write a minimal to-do list for today, to make sure I did something instead of nothing. I suppose I will keep going and try to do a little more each day. Until someone figures out how to reboot humans, what else can I do?

Thursday, 7 August 2014

Lazy Days

I've been meaning to blog for a while, but it's somehow fallen by the wayside... I have no excuse other than laziness: I've spent the past 3/4 weeks doing absolutely nothing. I've missed deadlines I meant to meet (nothing important, just competitions I would have liked to enter) and apart from generating a couple of story ideas, have done very little writing.

My excuse is that I needed to recharge. I haven't been ultra-busy, but doing a bookkeeping course from May to July took a lot out of me. I've also spent rather more time than usual socialising this year — April involved a hen weekend (for which I made a teddy bear cake!), May included lots of 30th birthday celebrations and June another birthday and a wedding. Having anxiety can be exhausting at the best of times and although I loved being with my friends, it sucked a lot of energy out of me.

I'm also trying to spend some time thinking about my next moves. An unexpected opportunity has come my way and I need to figure out how to get the best out of it: I've been offered mentoring via the fabulous WoMentoring Project. I'm thrilled to have been chosen by Emylia Hall — I had to wait a day to reply to her email because I was so excited I couldn't think straight! 

The trouble with not having expected to be chosen is that I haven't done a great deal of thinking about the mentorship since submitting my application. I've never been the type of person to attract mentors; I'm socially awkward rather than charming and while some tutors/lecturers seemed to like me, I was never confident enough to ask for their help. I'm still kicking myself for not getting more feedback throughout my MA by attending office hours, though I was too an xious. Hence I'm glad that my mentorship will be via email!

My writing goals have shifted a little and I need to recalibrate. I've been focused on getting published for so long that now I'm going to have a short story published in October, I'm not entirely sure what's next. The biggest questions surround my novel-in-progress and the short story markets I ought to target. I need to think about the direction I want my writing career to take and the type of writer I want to be. And if that involves lazing in the sunshine, it's just something I'll have to cope with!