It’s almost two years now since I published ‘The Black Hours’. A year and a half since ‘Blackwater’. Since then I’ve carried on with my freelance writing, worked with my husband with his communications consultancy, developed and expanded a successful editing business and judged a playwriting competition.
Not bad you might think. And this is only my work life. I’ve also got two children through GCSE’s and A levels, waved one off to Uni and another to college, got a new puppy and undertaken several home improvement projects.
Now I’m really not blowing my own trumpet here – I’m actually honestly frustrated with myself for what I’ve failed to achieve in those two years. I’ve hardly written a word of fiction. I started a second full length novel and abandoned it. It just didn’t feel right. I then went back to an idea that had been buzzing round my head for a fair few years. It’s a story I know I want to write. It’s also a story that’s going to take a lot of research, based as it is on the life of 19th Century French Painter Eugene Delacroix and this rather wonderful painting:
So, how is this new novel progressing? Well, it isn’t. I keep making excuses. Yes, there’s lots of research. And I have started on that research. But it’s slow, slow going. Not a single word of actual novel have I written.
I’m very busy. I’m incredibly busy. But so are other people. Other people have jobs, or businesses. Other people have husbands and children and dogs and stuff. And they manage. Some manage to write prolifically.
There is no excuse.
I just need to get off my arse.
So, I have a whole new determination to get going. And hopefully by getting this out there, on my blog for all to see, I shall actually do it. I’ve made plans to write a blog post about how I’m doing or about some aspect of research or the story behind the novel once a fortnight. I’m a bit anally retentive about schedules, so now I’ll have to stick to it.
I know what I have to do. I have to turn off Facebook. I have to stop reading the Guardian website every morning and getting angry about the comments sections. I have to stop stalking Johnny Marr on Twitter. I have to stop thinking – ‘One more coffee and I’ll get going’. In short, I need to take my own advice from this blog post.
It’s all this man’s fault:
And yes, that is me looking inordinately pleased with myself!
Any tips on how to motivate myself a bit more?