For a long time I have felt like I’m not writing enough. Yesterday, I realized it may be that I’m being too hard on myself.
About a year ago, I wrote a short story called Northville Five & Dime. I’m going to use that as my marker for a year. Since then, that short story has turned into a relatively completely 30,000 word novella. I also write the 15,000 word short story Deviation. I started a horror story and wrote about 4,000 words on that. I started and wrote over 10,000 words on a top secret project. I also have written a number of short stories that probably total around 15,000 – 20,000 words.
Add it all up and it comes to 74,000 – 79,000 words written over the past year. That’s not bad. Why do I feel like I haven’t done anything? I think it’s that completion thing. It is that there are other works that I have started and stopped and not been able to finish. That even though I have “completed” Deviation and Northville, I haven’t yet decided what to do with them. That’s where my dissatisfaction lies. But I should be happy with what I’ve done. So, here’s to me!!
I would say that’s definitely an accomplishment, especially for someone working full-time, not to mention raising kids. And teenagers at that…
Thanks, Carrie. It was interesting thinking of what I have accomplished this year rather than focusing on what I didn’t.
Hey, maybe that’s an approach I should take to other aspects of my life!!!
I hear you.
I’d call that success! And I totally get what you mean about the “completion” thing. Ever since I discovered the magic of self-publishing, I feel like my writing projects aren’t successful unless I actually publish them. It’s probably not a very good mindset to be in, but there it is!
Exactly. I finished those two stories but haven’t done anything with them. So what exactly have I accomplished.
But that’s the thing — you HAVE accomplished something! You finished two stories! Now it’s just a matter of figuring out what to do with them. And once you do something with them, you’ve accomplished yet another thing. Double accomplishment!
We were talking about the meaning of success in my writers’ group. So many felt that it was making a living off of your writing. To me, it is simply completing a project once started, no matter how big or how small. Your combined efforts demonstrate a huge commitment to writing. I have been writing for nearly six months, off and on, on one project. It is starting to feel a bit futile, which is not a good feeling. As Carrie said, there is so much more to living life than simply writing. Please do focus on your accomplishments.
Yah seriously Mark, here’s to you. Near 80k words is an achievement in my books, and better, i figure it’s a quality 80k coming from you. Have yourself a cold one to celebrate, I hope you do. I also appreciate the issue of finishing, and the satisfaction of that endpoint, but you can’t get there unless you put pen to paper (so to speak).
Now I need to move on to that finishing thing.
My hat is off to you! It would take me hundreds and hundreds of poems to reach that amazing word count! So do a happy dance. If you do on first, I will do a happy dance too…I promise! lol
Yes. I have done a happy dance. However, there will be no pictures or videos of it. Your turn.
I wish I knew how to post a photo here. I’m going to try it and see if it works! If you get a lot of html gibberish please forgive me 🙂
Sounds pretty productive to me, too. Nice. Something to remember when you’re in a writing low. I take stock of what I’m doing once in a while, too, just to remind myself that I have been productive.
Thanks and yes, that is exactly what I needed to do since I’ve felt for so long that I wasn’t getting anything done. I’m glad I re-assessed.