Monday, October 3, 2011

Mulling It Over

Have you ever noticed that as you get older, some of the things you enjoyed doing in the past aren't as much fun anymore? They take longer, more effort . . . more tiring. (Hey! Get your minds out of the gutter . . . I'm not referring to THAT. I like doing THAT just as much as I always have, thank you very much.) In this case, I am referring to writing books.
I have been writing books for about 15-18 years now. I think my first one came out in 1992 or 93 or somewhere in there. Since then, I have written over 300 of them. I commonly have 2-5 of them due each month. And I have always loved the process of researching and writing and then seeing it all flow together.
Until recently. I fell behind on assignments . . . not due to procrastination or laziness but simple lack of time. My assignments have really increased this summer and I find I cannot put in 14-16 hour days like I could ten years ago. I just . . . wear out. I get grumpy. I do things wrong. I don't feel good. It just takes more out of me than it did before. I find myself resentful because I'm not on the couch reading or curled up writing a letter. Instead, I am sitting at the computer trying to meet another deadline.
Lately, I have been waking in the morning with a panicked feeling. My first thought of the morning is what do I have to get done today. Instead of just mulling over possibilities, I go right into full-fledged panic that I won't get it all done. Not the best way to start my day.
So, I am giving some serious thought to trying to cut back . . . starting by not taking many book assignments. Just the most well paying ones, maybe, or the topics I like the best. I do have work I really, really enjoy and want to keep doing that. But maybe, just maybe, if we do some careful cutting back on expenses, I could say no to a few more jobs and find more time for relaxing. I know I'm not OLD (although there are days), but I also know that at 52, I simply can't keep up the schedule I did ten years ago.
What do you think? Good idea? Am I ready to not write a dozen plus books every year? . . . . I think I just might be. Still mulling.


Bev said...

I don't like that you are having that panic feeling. You are running on adrenaline, which is what I did before I got panic attacks. Eventually your adrenaline will not be able to turn off. That is when I started getting my panic attacks. You need to take time during the day to relax your bod and stop that adrenaline so it's not running all day. I'm in total agreement.

Take care of you,

Delaine said...

I agree with Bev. Waking up with panic is not a good way to wake or going to bed exhausted. She makes a good point about running on adrenaline, I think I do that myself and know it is not good. I know things have been tight but if you could cut back a little I woudl try. You already do so much. Try to take it easy and take care. Love