Thursday, December 15, 2005

PUBLISHING SURVIVOR, DAY 4

Monday, December 12

Back to work. I've been dreading it because there's a lot of upheaval going on there. Why do corporations choose the holidays to do a bunch of restructuring (i.e., so you have to worry if you have a job anymore) and make announcements about reductions in benefits? Ho, ho, ho to you, too! This year my work group is having a Bah Humbug potluck, since that seems to perfectly describe how so many of us feel. And to top it off, one big project is winding down, so it's chaos getting everything together from all team members. Another project is ramping up. And it's a monster project. We really need about 4-6 months to make it right. We have about 4 weeks. Corporate America is just so much fun. Hubby is going through much the same junk. Blech!

I'm looking at my calendar and contemplating the next few months. I still have half a book to finish and 2 proposals to write, preferably by February. Maybe I should consider giving up sleep since I'm not sure where all the hours in the day will come from. These are all books I'm really passionate about writing, so not having enough time is like sandpaper on silk--just rubbing me the wrong way.

I thought I'd feel a lot better with the dinner party behind me and focus on writing, but the holiday stuff is creeping in. That ticking clock reminds me that I've got to get stuff wrapped, gifts and cards mailed, baking completed, etc. This year, hubby has grudgingly said he will take over the Christmas cards. He grumbles (yet again) about why we send Christmas cards. What's the point? See me rolling my eyes. My mother comes from this HUGE family, most of whom live in Arizona. We don't live there. So the cards are often my only contact with great aunts and uncles, second cousins, etc. I love getting cards from them, so I send cards as well. Hubby comes from a small family, most of whom he hasn't seen in 20+ years or have already passed on. And he's not big on socializing voluntarily. Socializing is my department. I lovingly call him my House Hermit. So he doesn't have a mountain of friends he sends cards to, as I do. But he still volunteered to do them so I don't have to. For all his grousing about it, he's wonderful to take the task from me. I just can't this year. He's a rock, and I don't know where I'd be without him.

Damn! It's December 12... Which means it's my parents' wedding anniversary. I forgot until just now. After I beat my head against the wall, I wonder why I just can't seem to remember birthdays and anniversaries until the day they arrive. I've tried setting up a calendar system, but it didn't seem to improve my card and gift delivery any. My family knows I love them and that I'm usually a bit late with such things. Mom usually smiles, since her life is every bit as crazy as mine. I call the folks to wish them a happy anniversary. Mom is busy (surprise...not) being the real estate mogul of Tucson. So I talk to Dad. He thanks me for calling about their anniversary, then changes the subject to talk about my child and football--his two favorite subjects. My daughter calls him Grumpy instead of grandpa or the like. He's all bristly on the outside, but like liquid goo in the inside. But shh! Don't tell him I told you that. He'll only deny it...

Okay, since I can't get voted off this island and I don't want to be the Biggest Loser, I gotta figure all this out. Deep breath. Soon (I hope) the hectic pace will slow and I can get back into the swing of life. For now, here's today's schedule:
5:45 am - Up and getting ready for another sparkling day in the office.

7:15 am - Drive in is actually pleasant. I ponder some ideas for the proposals swirling in my head as I listen to my CDs. If I ever gave up my corporate job, I'd still have to find time for these drives. So many of my idea come when it's just me, the music and the rush hour traffic.

7:45 am - Arrive at the office in one piece and begin deluge of work to be done.

12:15 pm - Look at the clock. Oh, that explains why I'm hungry. I open mini-fridge here and pull out frozen lunch. Not exciting, but it gets the job done. And saves time so I can write during my lunch break.

1:20 pm - CHALLENGE # 1 RESULTS: Wow!!! It's fabulous that I managed to get 4 pages done in an hour, despite interruptions of ringing phones and people stopping by. Over the years, I've learned to work like that. Not my preference, but it can be done in a pinch. And this time of year, time is always pinched, right?

4:45 pm - Whew! Completed project within deadline and began reviewing the other team members' work, since I'm editor-in-chief for this one. But now it's time to go.

5:30 pm - CHALLENGE RESULT # 2: Make it home with the child. Time for homework! Yeah, not a popular proclamation, but it gets done. I dive into emails. I continue to arrange for promotion for upcoming book and reviewers who have ARCs.

7:00 pm - CHALLENGE RESULT # 3: After a rushed dinner (gotta love pizza delivery) while watching Extreme Makeover: Home Edition that's been on our Tivo for a few weeks, I head for the gym. This instructor is very nice, and she announces that she's leaving. Rats! I looked forward to seeing her every Monday night because she was so much fun. Hopefully, her replacement will be as engaging...but that's rare. Still, try to be optimistic and not think that the Grinch must be trying to steal all my fun this holiday season, as this is just another thing in a list of annoyances.

9 pm - Back home. Child bathed and tucked in. Time to get down to work! I clean up the chapter I just finished and email it off to buddies who will read for me. I probably owe them hazard pay or something *g* I spend some time IMing with another writer friend. Her WIP is utter dreck, according to her, and her editor will hate it and her for it. I keep assuring her it's hot and I wanted to read more. I think it's one of her better works, and she better hurry up and finish it or I'm going to be very put out. She left me hanging! We talk through a few plot things. Then she asks me when my WIP will be finished. I laugh. February--if I'm lucky. It's not due until April 1. She whines that I left her hanging. LOL

11:00 pm - It's been a busy, but relatively dull day so I'm going to bed. Won't bore you with further dissertation about it.

Yesterday's challenges were all met. I'm feeling invincible. Not true. I'm feeling pretty good. I'm hoping the rest of the week holds. And since my reward was a book to read, Amazon's timely email telling me that a book I ordered a while back has finally shipped ought to allow me to indulge.

Tomorrow Challenges:
1) Write 3 pages on WIP
2) Write next installment of Publishing Survivor
3) Get to grocery store to buy items for office potluck on Thursday

I'm not sure how I'll reward myself if I succeed. I'm thinking more writing time. I really want to keep working during this insane Santa-laden season!

2 Comments:

Blogger Robin Caroll said...

Whew! I'm tired just reading it all! LOL Keep on keepin' on, you're doing AWESOME!

Thursday, December 15, 2005 at 11:19:00 PM EST  
Blogger Shelley Bradley said...

Thanks for the cheer! I'm feeling worn out myself today. Wish I could say the weekend was going to be less busy... More soon!

Friday, December 16, 2005 at 11:18:00 AM EST  

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