Unrelenting

Tonight there is a space in my heart that aches to be filled. I do even know what could be missing, because there is too much to pick from that I have lost.

Writing a couple paid assignments today was like pulling teeth, but I did get them done. I just don’t know what happened after that because I had time to work on the book but just no motivation. I made coffee at 10pm and in spite of the wake up juice, I just didn’t have any motivation to get the words down. Or even edit. I think my motivation is down on the edits because I feel like I wasted a couple years writing a book nobody will read. Those aren’t the kinds of books people want.

Some days it just feels like more and more weight is getting added to your chest. And that wouldn’t be so bad if you had someone in your life who understood what that meant. More often than not, I am reminded of how alone I am in this world. The ones who have stayed don’t really know me. They know an aspect of me I’ve let my guard down enough to share. That isn’t me. The few I’ve allowed myself to be open with are gone for the most part. And I don’t really care to let anyone in again. What is the motivation behind that when they just go away in the end? You’re left with a lot of empty place settings at the table of your life. You’re left with a lot of memories of beautiful, smiling faces.

Some days are better than others, and though this might be a bit of a down night, just remember what Leonard Cohen said, “You want it darker. We killed the flame.”

If it’s not one thing it’s another. I have a lot of plans and ambitions, but it’s hard to not think that like all the 1001 other plans you’ve had, there is no room in this world for yours.

I just keep slogging on ahead.

Being Better

The last few days were heavy writing days with the paid work. I have a little bit of an obsessive personality, which means that when I get focused enough to do the paid work, I tend to fixate on it until I nearly drop. In the last few days, I wrote nine assignments. Four on Wednesday, four yesterday, and one at 10pm on Friday. Friday was a little bit of a wash, since I was feeling a little bit of burnout from writing those first two days. You just get to a point where it feels like you are pulling teeth and the work creeps to a standstill. Today, I went to breakfast with my mom, played with the dog, cooked lunch and dinner (I made authentic English chips on the stovetop) and took a nap. I have been wanting to write all day today, but there has been something blocking me. At 10pm, I found an assignment I knew a lot about and cranked out 1000 words in about 20 minutes. I’m hoping they buy it. It gave me a little bit of a feeling of accomplishment for a day that felt mostly like slacking.

Tomorrow I have a few more paid assignments, but hopefully I can get through this block and work on edits or maybe do some new writing. I’ve been needing to do some actual writing for a few days. There’s something about it that is nourishing to the soul.

I think the block that I’m feeling is post-book letdown. There is a part of me I have discovered as I edit that thinks the book I have written is a complete and total waste of time. So there is that resistance that says I am complete crap at something and need to stop. There is also that part of me that just is tired. I mean, I wrote a giant ass book. Sometimes you have to just sit back and catch your breath. And then of course, there is that space between the two of them.

I have been thinking about starting a YouTube channel, but between the imposter syndrome and the anxiety caused by the learning curve on that, I got about ten minutes into a tutorial online and decided I needed to take a nap. I wonder about things like storyboarding, how I want to say things, how I want to film these things, and even what I would even say. Honestly, what contribution would I have? And then I remember that people get views just for opening their mail. I have almost no experience at vlogging or videography. I didn’t even like videorecording times I spent with my kids because it was better to be in the moment than documenting it. So, like I said, the learning curve is steep, but the idea of doing this is interesting and might be a good creative outlet.

My podcast was short-lived for a few reasons. I discovered too late that anything longer than 20 minutes of a podcast was going to cost me money in storage fees. I only ever got a few dozen hits so I didn’t think that $30 per month was worth it to continue, but I do have sound equipment and now a decent camera, so maybe I can try my hand at YouTube. I know the format isn’t what it once was, but it could be fun.

Anyway, the point of tonight’s post is that I hate myself on days that I don’t get things done. I need to be better. I need to work through the Resistance and feel somewhat productive. There are just days when I want to do something else, I suppose. Lately with the wind blowing down off the mountains and gasoline being so expensive, I think I’ve been in a bit of a funk and instead of wishing for something to change, I need to work with the time I’ve got keeping me at home. In other words, if I can’t afford to go anywhere right now, I might as well work. Sometimes the old brain can only produce so much content until it needs a break. But I do still need to be better at managing my time.

Weather Changes Moods

Today was a productive day working on paid writing. I wrote five posts today and two were already picked up. I need to make a little bit of money for bills and other obligations, and today was a decent enough day for putting in the time. However, the drawback is that I dedicated more of my mental resources to those 3000 words on various subjects than I had hoped to do. I guess I got on a roll, because once I was done, I was done for the day. Not bad for five hours of work. Plus Penny and I went to the park and played fetch. I cooked lunch and dinner, and took a nap. And also watched a little bit of Britain’s Most Beautiful Villages.

Tonight I’m still feeling a little unsatisfied about getting the real work done, but I’ve hit my limit and wouldn’t be doing the book any justice in editing. I’m feeling a little bit fried. I suppose I can read up a little and do some research on maybe starting a YouTube channel or pitching to clients for travel writing. The latter is a little easier said than done. The resource I’ve been reading makes it sound incredibly simple, when it really isn’t.

Yesterday I took pictures of the moose that has been hanging out in town for the last few days. It’s good to see them back, since it means Spring is here. Something was missing though…

I guess today was also a good day for building up my momentum to write for pay and feeling a little bit more confident about that. The work was there today, so I had to do it. Sometimes it is feast or famine. I got lucky, which is something that is a big part of this life. You have to take opportunties, and sometimes when you’d rather just not, you have to push through. Like I’ve said before, my schedule is no longer like it used to be. Weekends are pretty much meaningless. I work when there is work to be had. Some days I do work I would rather be doing (like writing or editing) and other days I do the work that will keep me from starving or allows me to meet other obligations.

It’s also important to take time to rest or better yet, take time to play. This year has been very lean on opportunties to play, but I’m hoping to change that. I’m also hoping to deal with a massive amount of ADHD that has manifested itself. I found myself watching a show on Amazon Prime today which had commercials and then scrolling through TikTok and social media as I was watching. Hell, sometimes the TikToks were too long.

I might have to go on another social media detox soon while I calibrate my workday for better productivity. When you work for yourself, you don’t always get time off. You might miss a chance at a good payday if you make choices to do something else for the day too. And there are those days when you have to dynamite yourself out of bed because things are overwhelming. With a 8-5 job, you can fake it and still get paid. That isn’t so for being self-employed.

Music is always a good way to keep focused, and lately I’ve been listening to Tori Amos, who I haven’t listened to for years. Her first two albums were the best, along with singles, B-sides, and other “strange little girls,” as she used to call them.

I’m glad summer is on the way. Hopefully (with the exception of one or two more) we are done with snow up in this part of the country. I’m looking forward to more adventures, but for now, I have to recover my bank balances and get back into the black. Spring was rough this year for assignments.