Giving up: Knowing When To Throw In The Towel

I have finished the rough draft for one anthology entry and I’m 7 written pages into the second. However, I have come to realize there is no way I will get to finish both of them in time to submit. They are both due on the 24th, one is 1,200 words and needs to be 5,000 and the other needs to be 10,000 and I am no where near that.

So, I give up.

I will write both but instead of submitting two crappy manuscripts which will absolutely get rejected, I can focus on the short one, get it all perty like, and finish the other one at my leisure. And who knows? Maybe the stars will align and I will finish both to submission quality. And maybe the unicorns who live in my closet will cry tears of liquid silver and I will sell it to pay off my mortgage. :p

It is a pretty big closet…

This is a hard lesson for me to learn and it’s one I’ve had to learn more than once: You can’t do EVERYTHING, and you don’t HAVE to. Anything I don’t finish by the deadline, I can polish myself and put together as an anthology. Just because I can’t have them all traditionally published doesn’t mean they will languish unread on my flash drive. Some will even be on my site, as well. ^_^

Are you excited? Because I am. Excited and proud at getting so much done, even if it isn’t all on time. 😉

Mommy Monday – Homework Time!

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I am not ashamed to admit I take advantage of my kid’s homework time to do more writing. And not in the way you think. 😉

My kid is only in pre-k so her homework consists of matching the colored word to the appropriate picture of the crayon. But after we practice that? mommy’s turn.

In preparation for her future life as a student, I refer to my writing time (when she’s awake) as my homework. Granted, I can’t do a 15 page stint because she’s only 4 and will demand my attention. But I can usually snack a good 15-20 minutes out of this. In fact, she’ll scold me for not concentrating.

Sadly, this technique does nothing to prevent the cat from jumping into my lap the moment I’m still for 5 minutes… :p

Today’s Mommy Monday is short due to the fact I am anxious to finish this short story. I’ve been going along at a good clip selling 2 stories a month and I bet I can sell more if I have more to sell. 😉

When NOT to feel guilty – A Writer Mama’s Discovery

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“Sorry, hon. I need to finish this before I can play.”

How many of us women writers with children have had to say this and feel our heart clench at the disappointed frown on our kid’s faces? Oh it totally feels like being kicked in the chest but it’s inevitable. You’ll be on a roll, ideas flowing, pen making the paper smoke cause you are on FIRE, baby!! Lo, and behold! The same child who’s been ignoring you for the last three hours will decide your immediate and total attention MUST be paid or the sky will fall down.

So, what to do?

No really. I’m asking. Because I haven’t a freakin’ clue.

I’ve tried bargaining, I’ve tried explaining, I’ve tried running away and hiding (little buggers always find you) and that last elusive sentence that’s DYIN to come out gets lost in a sea of “BUUUTTTT MOOOOOMMMMM!!!!!!” never to be heard from again.

I tell my daughter that if she wants a happy mom, she’s gotta let me work a little. She doesn’t like it but if I promise to play with her later, she usually lets me off the hook for a little bit.

Every time I make a sale or finish a project, it makes me feel so happy, I run to her and give her a great big hug. She looks up at me and says “Mama, I am so proud of you.” That’s why I don’t feel guilt and why no mom should feel guilty. Because when the work is done, we are happier, better people. Every writer, parent or not, knows the feeling of completing a work. You take a deep breath, your muse gives you an approving nod, the sun is brighter, and you wanna run through the streets with all the happiness. Since I don’t do street running, I hug my kid.

Then I play “He Man.”