In an attempt to keep ourselves on track, the Playfriends are members of our chapter's goals group. For the uninitiated, this is a group where you post your goals and everyone holds each other accountable for meeting them.
I happen to have an unusual goal to post this month... To Enjoy Writing.
Yes, I need to be cranking out the pages and getting this book moving along the path to completion. But it's all about the attitude, as Instigator has spent our friendship trying to teach me. Unfortunately, she has to remind me more often than I'd like.
Setting a goal in front of me turns my mind into a drill instructor. I learn everything I can get my hands on, then expect myself to live up to whatever standards I set down.
You know what? That can suck a lot of joy out of things. :) Shocking, I know. Plus this week will find me putting my house on the market, so I still have some last minute household responsibilities to declutter and spruce up the place.
How am I going about achieving this unusual goal? Well, I have to admit that drill instructor isn't going to disappear completely! I'll still require myself to put pen to page at least once per day. But I'm not working with a definitive page count in mind, just a vague one I'd like to meet if I can.
Instead, I'm going to gently correct my thinking. Look at my writing time as a "date" between me and my characters, a chance to explore who they are and more about their lives. Use writing time as a reward for a hard day of packing boxes and cleaning house.
Gently, but firmly, redirecting my thoughts away from worries over where I'll submit this book. I'll worry about that a little further down the road, once I see how it is shaping up. Who knows? Maybe I won't even get an appointment at Nationals this year... give myself a break. It would be the first time I went to Nationals without pitching.
I view this as a step in the right direction of loving my writing without pressuring myself to remember the "rules". Were you ever tempted to chuck the rules and do it your own way?