This weekend, my husband and I reassessed how we wanted things to be going in our every day lives. We were staying up to late hours watching TV, and I was feeling like a lazy slouch in my day to day life. I wasn’t feeling satisfied the things I was doing.
Most of what I was doing…well, writing. I was on my computer in every free moment, whether I was checking email, writing or reading blog posts, or working on my WIP. And it was getting tedious. My writing was suffering, and I just wasn’t feeling good at the end of the day.
Guilt. I felt bad that I wasn’t spending enough time with my baby, I wasn’t doing the dishes, I wasn’t doing the laundry…you know, the menial stuff. So things needed to change. I decided that I wasn’t going to spend all day on the computer.
I’ve gotten up at 6am every day this week (wow, I know…three whole days) to write for an hour before my daughter wakes up. I’ll feed her and then I’ll go out and do some weeding in the jungle growing in our backyard until her morning nap. And the day continues with me doing other activities not on the computer. I’m beginning to think I might organize my recipes sooner than I think.
As I’m doing all this, I’m still writing. Working it all out in my head. And in that hour of writing in the morning, I’m actually being more productive because I’ve been working it all out as I do other things. (And I do try to fit in a little bit more than that one hour of writing, but I don’t stress if I don’t.)
I read a blog post yesterday that summed up really well what I’ve learned in just doing this for three days. Rachelle Gardner posted it. She talked about how the menial things are good for us. Taking a time out to let our brains work through things. She says:
Your brain needs open space to create, to solve plot and character problems, to clarify your position on an issue you’re exploring in your writing, to come up with just the right word for that problematic sentence you’ve struggled with.
So if you’re feeling like your WIP is stuck or you’re just feeling too close to it or you’re plain sick of it…take a moment to do laundry, vacuum the floors, and let everything sit for a while. Your brain will do the work for you.