it's a great life, if you don't weaken (matociquala) wrote,
it's a great life, if you don't weaken

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Maybe there's a God above, but all I've ever learned from love

is how to shoot at someone who outdrew you

Looking over outline notes on a project, and here's one that in particular caught my eye: Also, figure out something to do with that damned unicorn left over from last book.

Heh. Tah dah.

My process in lights.


So, a conversation tonight with netcurmudgeon led me to thinking about how crazy one can get as a writer, and being self-employed, and that feeling one can get that any moment not spent writing is simply wasted, because one has to get as much done as possible, as well and as quickly as possible, or one is wasting one's potential. Especially in this era of multitasking, there's a sort of ideal that one should be doing everything at once, equally well.

Here's the secret. It doesn't work.

I'm a closure junkie. I hate writing books, but god do I love having finished them. I love knowing I have X number of books written, and I'm working on another one, and I want to be done with it so I can put it on somebody else's desk, and...

...get started on the next one.

*squeaks and runs on treadmill*

Huh. Look at that. I'm self-employed. The only person I have to justify myself to is me (well, ignoring the day job for the time being) and whoever is handing me a deadline, and I haven't missed one yet, she said with fingers crossed. (I once reviewed an entire copyedited manuscript in 24 hours. Don't ask.)

And the thing is, there will always be another book. If I live to be six hundred and six there will always be another book. So even if I write and write as fast as I can, I will never get to the bottom of the pile of manuscript pages, and the books I write won't be as good, frankly, as if... if I got it through my head that this is a perfect application of the concept of mindful labor. Of working in the now, on the task before us, and not worrying about completing the task, or the task after that. Of work as meditation, of work as completion, of work as prayer. Of work as service, and service as meditation.

This is the thing that I do, because I am doing it, and because I am doing it, I am doing it well.

And the work will always be there in the morning.

Looked at that way, okay. I may never get it finished... but it's not like I'm going to run out of purpose in life.


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