Actually, I don’t have a secret plan, or a public plan, or any kind of set “plan,” not really. BlogLily wants to see plans, how we sketch our way to a destination, as she put it. What I have is a lot of hope, and a lot of skepticism, a day full of blinding optimism matched the very next day with my bottomless pit of doubt. But something keeps me going.
I do want to get somewhere. And that somewhere, as anyone who reads this blog surely knows, is that I want to be a writer. More than anything in the world. It’s all I’ve ever wanted, so these diversions into debts and day jobs and all that only push me farther away from what I want.
At the moment, this is how I plan: I go overboard. I go psychotic! I find every deadline and possible thing I could strive for and I tell myself I will get it done before the end of the month. In reality, I finish about a third of the things I set out to do. I wish I could do more—it’s never enough.
In example, the month of December. It’s a little over a week in and I’ve already (1) applied for a fellowship; (2) applied for a master class; (3) met with that agent; (4) wrote a sample chapter to audition as a ghostwriter for a new YA series; (5) accepted another freelance writing project, a quickie, and wrote and turned in the outline; (6) turned in the outline for the writing project I’d already accepted last month. Before the month ends, I have plans to (1) turn in the first chapter of the novel pitch the new editor is interested in—it’s a company I’ve never written for before, so I want to make it good; (2) consider applying for that other fellowship; (3) apply for that residency; (4) of course get the comments on both my outlines and keep moving; (5) do a concept for turning that short story into a novel; (6) work on the cinematic project I’ve been talking about with E; and most importantly: (7) WRITE (practically) EVERY DAY. Oh and there’s going upstate for the holidays. And I said I wanted to finish the *rough* draft of the novel I started in November—it may take longer than that.
And how do I plan? Color-coding in iCal, simple as that. Here’s a screen-shot of December:
It doesn’t look so bad when it’s set out in color, does it?
And December’s nothing. I’ve got BIG plans for January.