Thursday, May 13, 2010

Stale Mate (and Second Thoughts)

I could probably post this on my writing blog, but I don't feel like it. It's entirely writing related, but I want to post it here. My heart keeps leading me here because this is where my friends are - this is the site that my loved ones visit to see how I'm doing, not how my writing is going.

So here it is -writing is not going well.

I don't have a great reason for it. Matt's been cancer free for two years, so there's no medical crisis. I have two regular gigs, so it's not like people won't publish my work. Truth is, I'm tired.

It's not even Memorial Day (which marks the beginning of Matt's "busy" season), and he's already working 60 hours a week. I expect that he'll do 70-80/week this summer. That means everything else is in my lap. I might be able to handle it if I had the chance to talk with him throughout the week, but it doesn't happen.

This is how it works: he leaves the house at 3:30 or 4:30 am. He gets home at 6:00 or 7:00 pm. We talk on the phone while he drives home (which is about 30 minutes). When he gets here, he jumps in the shower, then sits down to eat. I empty his lunch box and then re-pack it. If I'm lucky, he has 30 minutes before his brain starts to shut down, but after his long day he doesn't have the energy to chat - he usually checks the weather and news online before passing out.

It would be easier if he traveled - then I would have to cook and clean-up after him, but as it stands I get all of the work and none of the benefit of being with him.

So that leaves me doing everything else around the house. Plus substitute teaching. Plus writing for two papers. Plus working on my manuscript, maintaining my blog, trying to keep up with other blogs/writing news, researching conferences...I could go on, but I'm tired.

I love the stories that I write for the local papers, but the pay is meager ($3-5/hour). I don't want to lose the connection with my neighbors, but this type of writing won't replace the money I could make at any other job (including substitute teaching).

I want to research bigger markets. I want to submit articles to other periodicals, but I'm so overwhelmed by the number of magazines that I don't even know where to start. And when I finally narrow it down, I can never think of anything to write.

And my manuscript did not final in the most recent un-published novelist contest. I don't know exactly how I did (I'm praying that I at least improved over last year), but I'm dreading getting the scores back. As long as I improved, I think I'll be okay, but if I didn't (or I did worse) then I don't know if I'll be able to continue.

I really don't know what to do right now. I want to write, but the ERN and GTI won't support me and I don't know if I can find other markets.

Maybe I'm just tired. I hope I'm tired. I need to do something to break out of this stale mate - I need something to let me know that I'm doing the right thing.

I need Jesus.


Camille said...

Just tired and burned out, but if things aren't going to change on your own, then you have to let something go. Maybe letting go of the little papers will allow you more time for the big stuff.

Also, keep in mind that really, all you and Matt need are clean clothes and food. That's the bare necessities. The rest are details. My house generally looks like a toy and clothes bomb went off. So every few months I have people over so I can clean. :-)

Karin said...

Thanks, Cam :)

nancy said...

Yup, it's just that you're tired--or PMSing, or PG! Been feeling queasy lately???? Get outside and take a walk, pull a weed or plant something and you'll feel better. This is just a little season in life and it will pass.

Karin said...

Sorry Nancy :) No little Beerys yet - I'll let you know!

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