Tuesday, May 14, 2013

Writing Life

We approach the golden moment, when I'm going to be unemployed as anything except a writer. That's in about 18 hours, I guess. It's exciting and it's terrifying. I'm thrilled that I get to devote myself solely to doing things that I love. Up until now, though I live in a relatively privileged position in life and have things I love like friends and hobbies and a husband, there's been a big block of time that was set aside for WORK, which was never a thing I liked, let alone loved. I gather there's jobs people just adore; I read about them, and I hear about them sometimes from my friends. But then of course two years go by and suddenly they've got another job, and anyway they hated it for the last six months they were there, so I guess they maybe never even loved the job, they were just excited it wasn't as bad as the one they had before had become?
That was a digression. But it's true. I think most people only love jobs until the shiny newness wears off. There's a very lucky few who fall into a career they really do delight in, and they maybe stick with it all their life, and that's good. But most people just stumble for one thing they kind of don't loathe to another thing that seems a little better only maybe it isn't, and so on.
I hope I'm done with all that. Because I do love writing, every part of it. The actual act of creation is incredible, putting down the words and seeing your brain meats grow and become wonderful, that's the best. And then finishing a project, oh my that's stupendous. And even though I'm really not that fond of editing and rewriting as a thing, the results of that work are superior and joyful. Then, of course, there's getting paid to do: it's already something I love, and then people are willing to give me money (fingers crossed that such keeps happening regularly) in order to do it? Well, that's the best.
So I'm working out how to do this new thing. How to make sure I don't turn into some guy in a bathrobe who sits at his desk for an hour between marathons of Game of Thrones or Mad Men, who devours chips and drinks too much Diet Coke, who is envious of anyone doing better than him and resentful of his too-small checks, and who in the end doesn't even do much writing.
First, get up on time. Get a shower and get dressed. Have a coffee and do some writing, one or two or three thousand words. Some lunch with the husband, a nice walk, maybe some yoga. Edit and rewrite in the afternoon, then make a nice dinner and spend the whole night with the husband or friends or both, a glass of wine, a TV show. Not too much of anything, but a nice mix. Four or six hours of work in a day, most days, but maybe only two or three sometimes. There's a lot of flexibility, but on the other hand, there can't be too much or pretty soon I'm not writing.
I've been trying it on my days off for the last week, and it's worked pretty well. Not perfect, but it's a work in progress, and I'm just getting warmed up. I'm pretty damned excited to give it a go, though.
See you in two days, when I'm a full time writer.

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