Wednesday, August 23, 2006


Please bear with the following stream-of-consciousness blogging... (It's all I'm up to at the moment.)

I've been struggling with balance lately. It's a chronic struggle--how to give enough attention to everything and not neglect anything.

For example, my daughter wants to be a Girl Scout. I was a Girl Scout growing up and loved it and I know my daughter would love it too. So, what's the problem? The waiting list for troops is so long, the only way she can be a Girl Scout is if I volunteer to be a leader and start up a new troop. But aren't I trying to finish a novel? If I take on something new, it'll be that much harder to squeeze in writing time. Still it would be fun to do Girl Scouts with my daughter. Before long she'll be grown and interested in other things and I don't want to miss out on what could be a wonderful experience with her. So I've sent in my leader application and will soon have one more thing to balance along with everything else.

Finding a balance has been especially tough recently for many reasons: We've done lots of traveling lately; School just started up again; There have been more than the usual number of distractions.

As a result, I've lost my writing focus. I find I'm an all or nothing sort of person. Moderation is not my strength. So, as my thoughts and energies have turned towards other areas of my life, my drive to write has weakened. And it's so easy to be distracted from the novel right now because I'm in the midst of a tough section. The end needs to be powerful and it takes a lot of effort to get it the way I want it. Not to mention my insecurity is poking up its ugly head yet again. Being almost done means the moment of truth is almost at hand. Others will be reading my novel in the near future.

Unless I let myself get so distracted I never finish.

No! I want to finish. Sure it's scary and difficult, but I've spent too much time and energy on this story. I won't cheat myself by wimping out at the end.

So, I'm going to put more energy into finding that balance. I want to finish my novel. I want to be available to my kids and family. It's got to be possible to do both, don't you think?

(If you managed to wade your way through this brain dump... thank you! I'll try to compose something more coherent soon.)


Vicki Pettersson said...

This is my greatest struggle, too. My situation is a bit different than yours, but one thing you might want to try that I found helpful is buying Lynn Viehl's ebook, THE WAY OF THE CHEETAH. She's a mother, like us, and a prolific author (love her blog) and she claims her children actually made her a faster, more efficient writer. Lots of good stuff in that book. I don't use them all, but I have the cliffnotes version hanging above my computer for easy reference. FWIW.

Best luck!

Renée said...

Thank you so much, Vicki. :o) I will definitely check it out. In my case, my children have certainly made me faster and more prolific, since I barely wrote anything before becoming a mom.

Cindy said...

This is something that has been on my mind, too. Advice coming from someone with the same problem as you might be suspect, but I'd tell you to remember that your kids need a whole Mom, and if writing is a part of said Mom, then you'd be doing them a disservice by ignoring that need. If you're like a lot of writers, then not writing leaves you grumpy and dissatisfied?

Anyway, it's obvious you're a great mom!

Renée said...

Hi Cindy-

Advice from someone with the same problem is never suspect! It's comforting. :o)

And you are right, of course. I'm much more centered when I'm writing regularly. I have such a difficult time seeing that sometimes. Thanks!