We all need downtime. Life can be hectic and doesn’t always offer anything but a continuous string of busy that we can’t seem to escape. When we do manage to find a little downtime, it can feel so good, we don’t want to give it up.
I won’t say I’ve been completely stationary. In fact, I won’t say I’ve even had a wealth of downtime. Just…different time that has kept me away from writing very much.
There have been books to edit, a home renovation project and work has gotten even busier. Oh yeah, and Disney+ and Amazon Prime found their way into my household so I’ve been forced (yes, forced against my will – kicking and screaming the whole way) to watch some shows I’ve been wanting to see for some time (<cough> The Mandalorian, Good Omens, The Tick, American Gods). All those things take time and attention away from my writing.
That’s not to say I haven’t been actively plotting new stories in my head. That never stops. I just haven’t put pen to paper, or fingers to keyboard, in a while.
You might say, thinking about writing is not the same as writing and you would be right. However, by running the plot-lines through my mind several dozen times, when I DO sit down to write, those pieces of the story will come out fast and furious. At least, that’s how it has always worked for me in the past.
But, enough about that! I was talking about downtime.
The beauty of taking a step back from simply banging out word after word, is it gives me the opportunity to put some thought into the “what’s next?”. I don’t mean, which book am I going to write next, but more along the lines of, where do I want to take my writing career? What goals might get me there and when should I try to meet those goals?
I could continue to simply write more books and hope to hit that tipping point. It feels closer every year, now more than ever. But is there something else I can be doing to help that along faster? Should I be trying to hit it faster?
Those, and many other questions, need some pondering. I don’t have the answers yet although I’ve had a number of websites and service providers reaching out to me, encouraging me to subscribe to this or pay for that in an effort to reach a bigger audience.
That might be one answer for me. I simply don’t know yet. I do know that I value each and every person who supports my work and I appreciate you for spending time with my musings.
In the mean time, I’m going to get a few of those items mentioned above out of the way. The renovation is almost done, work is slowing down for the holidays and I’m reviewing the last galley of the year (for Jack Kane and the Kaiser print edition).
The downtime has been good but I do miss sitting down to write new stories. Next stop is the holidays and then back to writing. I’m looking forward to it.
I hope you get to enjoy some downtime of your own. Have a happy holiday season!