Monday, 9 July 2012

Day 2: Balancing Writing and Work.

Yesterday I did 10,000 words, which was a first and super amazing. But today I had to manage 7,500 words along with going to work.
After yesterday's success, I had an awful sleep.

For those of you who know me, you will attest to the fact that I have seriously weird, in depth dreams. I sometimes dream I'm me, sometimes I'm someone else, and sometimes I'm watching from an external perspective. I have had dreams that cover weeks or months, and others which are just a flash of an image.

Last night I had a totally new type of dream. It was as if my mind just could not create any more images. I've had dreams where I have been blind before, which is annoying (and you wake up with sore eyes from trying to see all night), but this was not that. All I could see for the whole night was flashes of light. I tried today to explain it to Jenna at work, but had absolutely no idea what it was.

Sitting down to my laptop again tonight in the dark, staring at the bright screen, I suddenly realised. I was dreaming of staring at a blank computer screen. (Even now, though I've turned the screen right down, and have been trying to type with my eyes closed as much as I can, I have a head ache from an entire day looking at the damn thing.) I feel that this is somehow not a good sign.

So, after that weird night I woke up groggy and not at all wanting to write. But I got up, made myself a cup of tea, and got back into bed ready to write. I decided not to have creamy, hot, sweet porridge, as the potential for that to send me back to sleep once it settled in my stomach was just way too high. Sadly, this also seemed to affect my ability to get into the flow. I struggled away for just under two hours, trying to connect the one sentence with the next one. In the end, for all my efforts, I had 1,954 words. It meant that I still had another 5,546 to write that night when I got home. Though I did give myself a shake and remind myself that Stephen King only writes 2,000 words a day, and just look at how many books he's published!

At work, it was my first day back after my holiday, so found a wonderful 60 emails and a pile of work waiting for me to fix up. Add to that my growing discomfort with my computer screen, and by five pm I was very happy to go home.

On the way home I just kept thinking: I had over 5,500 words to write, the beginnings of a headache and no imagination left in me. I needed every bit of flow I could get.

So I just followed the routine. I went to the gym and did half an hour of cardio fitness (am starting to believe that listening to upbeat music while at the gym, instead of watching TV, helps with the runners high at the end, and consequently the flow). I did a short stretch because I couldn't find a spot to stretch in the usual room, so had to do it surrounded by all the muscle guys lifting weights and grunting. I then came back, made a ham and cheese toastie (never underestimate the power of a ham and cheese toastie) and jumped into a hot shower. It was then straight into bed with my laptop, cup of tea, block of chocolate and sadly also a bag of chips (I was congratulating myself that I had appeared to cut down my chocolate in take from half a block a day to a third of a block, until I realised that I've suddenly increased my in take of chips from nothing to half a bag. Really don't think I'm winning in this.)

But anyway, the thing you all want to know: did it work?

And the answer is yes! Was in bed and writing by a bit before 7.45 and by 10pm I had written an additional 5,694, bringing my day's total up to: 7648!

And not only that, they were the easiest 5000 words I've written in the past few days. 

So, all I can say: all hail the flow!

So, quick update, my sequel currently stands are 49,338 words. (and as I typed that, I suddenly thought how I could use something I just wrote to explain something I was getting stuck on. Go brain, you are really picking up.) I have to admit, coming home today, I thought I might have to rethink the whole thing because it just wasn't working. But I shall not give up so easily now!

Well, good night from a tired, but happy, Buffy.

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