Saturday, August 27, 2011
Tomorrow, I will write/edit/read everything on my to-do list.
I'll make an editing schedule and keep it up every night.
As soon as I'm done reading this book, I'll get back to revisions.
These are just a few of the promises I've broken to myself and others who try to motivate me. It's like somewhere along the line, I decided every writing goal was a New Year's resolution to be bent, broken, and forgotten sometime mid-February.
It's not that I'm lazy. Okay, maybe a little bit. And easily distracted. And busy with other (worthwhile) things, like raising my kids, teaching important life skills (yes, I get the irony), and cleaning the bathrooms.
The thing with unreliable people is that eventually the people around them stop trusting them to keep promises. And while I do try to be reliable for other people (especially the physical, face to face people in my life), the same thing applies to self-trust. At some point, I don't believe myself anymore when I set a writing goal because I know the toilet will overflow or there will be a hurricane looming over the east coast, or I'll get diverted by a shiny object, and the goal will be forgotten. Usually I remember it the next day and try to get back on the horse.
But sometimes I just stop writing/editing/reading. For weeks at a time. I always come back to it because it's part of my soul. There are other parts of my soul, too, though. And they have a siren song all their own.
I wonder if there will ever be a time in my life when all those promises I made to myself will be fulfilled. Some books take a lifetime to write. Maybe some routines or habits take a lifetime to master.
I'm not going to end this post with a new promise. I'll just say I have hope and determination on my side. I've been described as tenacious. I've been compared to a fire.
I've accomplished many difficult things, from brutal survival situations to a marathon to natural childbirth, and I always come out stronger, if a bit bruised. And I can conquer myself, too.
I may not be making leaps and bounds toward my ultimate goals of publication and readership, but even baby steps will get me there someday.
There's one thing I can always promise:
When I want something badly enough, it happens.
Are you the promise-making type? How do you keep yourself in line?