OTF: On Literal S&M

The Sleeping GiantI feel tortured.

And torturous, because who but myself do I have to blame for not writing in over a month? Sure, you could blame the Fates (and I do, as regular readers know all too well). Yes, they played their role, but you can’t control what the Fates bring you. However you can control what you do with it afterward.

I want some solid time to work on my novel. While we’re at it, I’d also like an island in the Caribbean, season’s tickets to the Bruins, and a vineyard in California (or at least an unlimited pass to the tasting room and panoramic-view deck).

I want all this, but it’s not going to happen anytime soon. What I need to do is just decide that in order to get this novel done, I’m going to need to steal time wherever I can. Maybe 10 minutes here, 100 words there, skip a bit of sleep or push myself that extra little bit to get something down on the page.

100 words. That’s my goal for today.



Got 41 solid minutes in. Not really writing, but editing/rewriting over a fairly large area so hard to pinpoint exact words. But over 100, fer sure. I win! ~gs

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6 Responses to OTF: On Literal S&M

  1. Tara Benwell says:

    Deadlines. It’s the only thing that works for me. I’ve been having trouble too. If you want to set up some partner deadlines in the new year let me know. 🙂

    • Graham Strong says:

      Hi Tara,

      Deadlines work for me too — it’s just I haven’t been able to put deadlines on the novel. Not hard ones anyway. I’ve always said work and family come first, and I’ll stick to that. But I know that I can carve some minutes out of the day for the novel, if not hours…

      I suspect there is something else at work too — I have a couple of story/plot/character problems I’m trying to work out, which is making me freeze up. I think I’ve let those percolate for long enough — time to get them whipped into shape!

      Thanks, as always, for your support Tara!


  2. Chris says:

    Graham, don’t be so hard on yourself. When the time is right, you’ll write.

    • Graham Strong says:

      Hi Chris,

      Been thinking about you lately — hope all is well! I imagine things must be slowing down for you now…

      Thanks for the encouragement — again! I just re-read today’s post — it does come off as a little harsh, doesn’t it? I really not beating myself up that much. Just trying to give myself a swift kick in the rear is all… I feel like I’ve got to do something to get things moving forward again!


  3. TCWriter says:

    My projects aren’t as complex as a novel but the end result is pretty similar; chunks of progress followed by stretches without even a hint of breathing room.

    I’ve resorted to keeping the current essay in a Dropbox folder accessible to my phone, tablet, laptop and desktop. I don’t get much done on the phone or tablet, but getting even an edit done alleviates the guilt, which is probably more important than getting 50 words down.

    Another option is to start hitting the bottle hard; eventually you’ll drive away family and clients and you’ll have plenty of time to write.

    Good luck.

    • Graham Strong says:

      lol – the bottle idea is not a bad idea. But who would I celebrate with once I’m finished? Ah, the pressing issues of today’s novelist…

      Managed to alleviate some of my own guilt, even as you were commenting. I’m finding I have to re-grasp some story threads (particularly difficult because I am a fork with a few possible roads to take. Still, feels good to get back at it!


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