A Revision Funk

Chase your dreams until you catch them…and then dream, catch, and dream again!

– Dee Marie

Part of being an artist of any kind is about letting go – soaring into heights madness or uncontained delight – and being anchored. At the moment I feel like I’m floating through space in slow motion like a fat kid chasing cake, struggling to move my mind to focus on edits. It’s not that I don’t want to, I feel like I simply can’t. My brain has turned from malleable to concrete…or cake.

Last October I hired a freelance editor to look through my newly overhauled ms and fast forward a few months later I still haven’t been able to dive into the much yearned for feedback with my usual speed. I could blame this on a serious case of procrastination or I can sit down and be honest with myself.

Yes I was recovering from jet-lag, yes the soul-sucking heatwave consuming parts of Australia sucks my creativity and hydration out the window and yes I prioritize other things like study and work on some of the days allocated to revising. But that is not the heart of my problem here.

I have broken routine.

There is no point dwelling on what is broken, the real question is how do I get back into routine? What happened to me? Then it hit me today with startling clarity…I am surfing the internet way too much for no particular reason. I am normally very strict with my time online but somewhere between coming back and now, I kind of forgot that fact and paid dearly for my lapse of judgement.

Therefore, I have decided to do what I always do when I need to do some serious brain work…slash my internet time to pieces.

My plan of attack is as follows:

–       Deactivate Facebook, I don’t actually care about the mundane every day people post about.

–       Get rid of the unlimited data on my phone

–       Invest in a calendar. I had one last year and my productivity hit the roof.

–       Revise every day – even for 15 minutes – for 30 days. It takes 30 days to form a habit. I need the feeling of sitting down and looking at my manuscript to feel natural once again.  Once I reach that point again only then I will reevaluate my schedule.

Writing this post has been very cathartic for me and I feel like now I admitted I have a problem I can try to be brave and enter the world of words again. I’m not going to lie, It’s scary being away from a project for a while. Your brain feels clumsy and unrefined. But the important thing is, I’m willing to face the page again.

How about everyone else? Any tips in getting back into the revision swing of things once you’ve been away?

Love and light,

Anushka

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10 thoughts on “A Revision Funk

  1. Hehe my post today is very similar! Except I’ve never had a revision routine. I just plain hate it. My problem is I need a concrete deadline set by someone else. With Dragon Wraiths I was able to plug away at the revision because I knew, if it was shortlisted for the Mslexia competition, I would need a complete MS I wasn’t ashamed of by a certain date. With my current WIP I set my own deadlines and then just ignore them! Also I have entered the world of Twitter in an attempt to get sales for Dragon Wraiths (ta for the RT by the way) and it is consuming all my time. Add that to an obsessive need to see if I have sold any copies of DW every ten minutes (I’ve sold 9 copies IN TOTAL since Feb!) and you get the picture. I’ve said to hubbie that, when he starts the short contract in a couple of weeks, I’m going to unplug the wireless router in the morning so I’ll have to cross the house to the lounge to turn it on and surf. If that doesn’t work then maybe a writing career isn’t for me! 🙂

    • Congrats on sending Dragon Wraiths out to the world 😀 I loved your post, it’s nice to know when you are in struggle town there is a writer somewhere out there who gets you too! It’s funny how things pan out though, as soon as I admitted about my revision woes in this post, I became so much more productive the next day, like I wanted to prove myself wrong! ps- I’m sure a writing career is for you, grumbling and procrastinating is all part of the ‘artistic’ process.

      • I think being a writer is like being a parent: there is lots of helpful advice in the world but sometimes it is too much and you have to plough your own field your own way at some point; you think it will get easier but it just gets harder in a different way and the things that were impossible in the beginning you can do in your sleep by the time the second child (book) comes along but then you discover a whole new awful. Actually I could go on. I sense a post forming! 🙂

  2. I’m in the same boat. My novel is finished, and I’ve been hit with a tidal wave of “Ok, treat yourself to some downtime.” I’ve become addicted to watching tv shows on Kindle. House of Cards, Game of Thrones, Prime Suspect, The Guardian – if its edgy and dark, I’ll watch it. Well. My inspiration has fluttered away; my motivation is gone. Also, I’ve noticed my muse is hiding. So. That said, I pledge to put the Kindle down and write. I have no idea what I’ll turn into a novel next, but the important thing is to write. I’m thinking about the Blog A to Z challege. One blog a day for the month of April.
    Be strong, ladies and gents. Put away the toys, and return to the good work of writing!! 🙂

    • Sometimes you need to zone out to get the hunger to be productive again, plus I think you deserve it…you have been revising your novel solidly for quite some time! But the Blog A-Z challenge sounds like a great way to ease back and connect with your creative side 🙂 How is your synopsis going?

  3. I’ve been working on a short story and I’ve revised the thing seven times!! And I’m going to revise it some more! I’m seriously sick of revision, which has never happened to me before.

    I have a strange way of staying motivated though. I write another story. 🙂 There is another story that the Muse pitched as something utterly un-publishable, and therefore something I’m writing just for myself. So I always make sure that after my revision session I leave some time to play in that world. Kind of like only getting dessert if you eat your dinner.

    Yes, I’m talking about cake. 😉

    • That actually makes sense, I’m beginning to see the benefits of working on other things too. I started doing that the last couple of days and as a result I’m slowly getting the revision groove back. I’ve been mixing the never-ending-revision with my copywriting/editing course and I’m finding it to be a nice mix so far of alternative worlds and non-fiction. I’ve also started planning the sequel to encourage the muse to WANT to work on the current revision so we can throw ourselves into the next project already! I want to work on something new without feeling guilty.
      Your short story sounds like it’s going well…I’ve tried getting one ready but then I realized maybe that story should be a novel! I need to think shorter…either that, or I’m a story hoarder.

  4. When I’m having trouble concentrating on the work at hand, I do two things (one or both): Change the scenery, as in go to a different place for the specific purpose of writerly duties, and/or turn off the wireless. That’s self-explanatory. Without access to the distraction, I have to entertain myself. Which usually involves writing or editing.

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