Last week I was feeling very smug, because I thought I had it sussed. The way to motivate myself to get things done was to make a to-do list each day and tick things off as I achieved them. It worked very well, and I got lots more done than usual. Then what happened?
This week is a different story. I can't even be bothered to make a list! It all feels too boring and contrived. And I'm feeling lazy. Is it the dreaded hormones kicking in again? Something to do with the full moon? Who knows? Who cares?
One habit I have been sticking to for nearly three weeks now is writing for 15 minutes as soon as I get up. I have my yellow legal pad waiting for me on the kitchen table and I sit down to write before I do anything else. Some days the writing flows beautifully, often inspired by a dream. Other days (like today) I struggle to get the words down. This morning I simply wrote a list of things I could see in my garden. I described the sky. I added a little more to the novel scene I wrote yesterday, but that was about it. It's hard not to feel despondent when inspiration doesn't strike.
My novel is progressing very slowly, and I still feel a long way from finishing. I start to lose heart and feel it's the worst piece of writing ever. I have this longing to go through what I have and tidy it all up. It all feels such a raggedy mess. How can I write the ending when nothing seems to fit properly in the middle? It's like a giant puzzle I have to solve.
I'm not a planner. I try to plan, but then my writing becomes stilted and forced. The scenes where my characters take over and carry on without me work much better.
And The Yellow Room? The website is up and running again after being 'down' for about a month. I need to update it again soon and make sure I include a Paypal button for the competitions, so that people can pay online. I have yet to start proofreading the stories for Issue 6, which will be considerably later than planned, due to a slight cash flow problem! I'm relying on more competition entries to help with the financial side of things. More subscriptions would be great, too.
Don't forget to send in your entry to The Yellow Room Short Story Competition, which closes on 31st March 2011. Details of how to enter are on the website: www. theyellowroom-magazine.co.uk