Hold Me… Accountable

Let me add my voice to the chorus and just say: moving sucks.

I’ve been in various stages of moving for the past four months. Our previous apartment, across the street, was a temporary situation, and we could never settle down, never truly unpack. Some of those around us were extraordinarily inconsiderate in ways that I found unavoidably distracting. Boxes everywhere, half our belongings still packed, instability regarding our living situation and financial issues, all while each utility offered its own brand of trouble to our lives.

None of this, no matter how much it may have frustrated me, or interrupted me – or downright held me squirming against the floor – is intended to be an excuse. I don’t want an excuse. I simply need to explain the reasons I have been absent from writing for so long.

My new writing space, in a corner where the laundry
machines normally go. Also notice – editing my blog post
in the picture. SO META. 

I choose to do so in this public forum in order to seek greater accountability for my actions. I have a terrible habit of taking responsibility for that which is beyond my control, and I need to apply what positive aspects I can from that to taking responsibility for the rest of my career, and for my life.

I know I can’t expect Internet-folks, with their own lives and problems and worries to be a legitimate source of accountability, but saying it here feels better than hiding in my corner and whispering it to the Ferocious Dustbunnies of Xanathar-6. (Maybe I need to get a little more ventilation in here…)

I have not given up on writing, nor on storytelling in general, as these are my passion. However, I have given up on so many various attempted-passions in the past that I feel discouraged. Don’t get me wrong – nothing has captured my interest quite like storytelling and creative work. I know I can succeed in this field, and I look forward to future accomplishments, whatever they may be. This is only to say that my career is currently on the knife’s edge.

I can handle rejection. This will not slow me down. What I can’t take is slurring through each day feeling like I’ve accomplished nothing. If it seems like I’ve failed, these failures all stack up on me and become overwhelming.

Therefore, I must start with a fresh perspective. I can remember the… troubles of the past (my mind wants to call them failures, but honestly, I wrote one and a half first drafts in the three months I was working), and push forward without giving myself such lofty goals.

To fix some of my previous mistakes:

  • I will not, at first, give myself a word count goal for the day. It’s impossible for me to not have a soft target in mind, but I need to not feel disappointed for coming up short. 
  • I will not set a hard target date for completion of any work (if it is not strictly necessary) until I am back into the swing of things. 
  • I will only work on actively writing one large project at a time (editing previous projects is something I need to start doing, and shall). 

These might seem somewhat negative (all ‘Thou Shalt Not’s), but I need the restrictions to keep me from entangling myself in a mire of self-loathing goop. My wife keeps encouraging me to take some time out of my day to look at the bright side. Would it be strange for me to actually schedule a reminder on my iPod touch to do so? I have trouble taking such positivism seriously.

I have formulated a rather regimented schedule, about which I shall write later. It probably needs adjustment, and could use the opinions of more experienced day-to-day writer types. Look out for it in the next week.

Thanks for sitting through the semi-onerous musings of a writer trying to start again.

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