“A writer who waits for ideal conditions under which to work will die without putting a word to paper.” EB White
This topic, “write”, emerges halfway through the 13-week plan I created for the start of my 2015 writing life. Since this is Chapter 5, I am only a bit behind! During weeks one and two, the workload at my practice was considerably light, and I had the energy to write every night when I came home from work. I also wrote about my writing in on a google doc of running dates. For 8 days. Then the writing about the writing stopped. And soon after, my work schedule increased and my daily writing frequency dipped in the other direction.
This lull in my written output is typical when my business life gets busy. I treat patients almost back-to-back patients for 8-10 hours a day, keep up with the necessary documentation, communications and office needs, and return home at night close to depletion. I need the evenings to relax and process before I go to sleep. My words have been spent, albeit wisely, in other efforts during the day. This can initiate several weeks of silence at the blog before I have a little break and I have the emotional energy to write once again.
In the past I have accepted this rhythm, but now I want to change that pattern and write through the busy times, too. I was surprised this past month when I couldn’t stick to my daily plan, thinking I created reasonable goals for myself, though I haven’t fallen as far away from writing as usual. (In 2014, I participated in three online courses through Tweetspeak and published 20 posts total at my blog. So far in 7 weeks of 2015, I have published 8 posts). I spent time hashing out thoughts on this with my writing partner in our weekly chats, and refined some of my goals and expectations for my writing life through this process.
I am grateful for my writing partner. It’s given me joy and encouragement to share what I am writing, and the accountability has kept me connected to my plan. During weeks three and four, a week passed and I didn’t have anything written to discuss, so I chewed on my barriers during our discussion. Another week went by, and still I had no writing to share. The start of the fifth week I was motivated to write SOMETHING. I was stuck on a piece that didn’t seem complete, but before my next online chat, I published it anyway (see “notice”). Even reading it now there are lines that I would edit, but surrendering perfection allowed me to move forward.
I know that for me to keep writing during these intense phases, I need to have some prompts to work on, whether it’s blogging through a book, refining journal entries and thoughts, or participating with other writer’s/groups prompts. When blogging through THIS this book, I am provided with guidance to hone my skills, and often have a topic bubbling right at the surface to develop. I enjoy the notebooks of my notes that I continue to mine. I have been writing and re-tooling some of these thoughts, even if I don’t publish them at the blog.
Most importantly, this week I have been evaluating how well my goals support the vision for my writing life. Right now, I am not writing to earn a living, but I am writing because I feel a passion to do so and I want my writing to continuously improve. The pressure to write daily is actually taxing my motivation to write regularly. I have decided that each week I will look at my calendar and schedule 3 blocks of time to write that fit flexibly within my composite schedule. I am going to keep the rest of the goals as I initially established them, and look forward to exploring the next chapters in this second half of my 13 weeks (I can still finish “on time”).