Saturday, April 16, 2011

The Plan

At this moment I’m reading through galleys of my latest novel. When I’m through, and the galleys are corrected, and the book finally goes off to the printer, I will have finished my nineteenth book. Yay for me, right?

You’d think.

I’ve somehow managed to write nineteen books while simultaneously engaged in a battle to the death with Fear and its evil henchman, Procrastination. So far the score is: Fear—1,614,307, Me—3 (and that’s being generous).

At this moment I have six amazing story ideas bumping around in my head, eagerly awaiting their turn to hit the page. And I’m itching to get them there. I want nothing more than to place my fingers on the keyboard and feel these amazing stories and ideas flow from my brain onto the screen and eventually into the world, where readers can read them. I want to throw those nagging voices of doubt aside and write dangerously.

I do not want to check my email every 2.7 seconds, then surf over to IMDB to find out what’s been going on with Barry Williams since “The Brady Bunch” was cancelled, then check my email again, then look up my son’s grades online, then check my email, then notice that my coffee is cold and I need to make a new pot, then check my email, then look up my son’s lunch account balance online, then check my email, then finally work up the courage to square myself in front of the Word document that is supposed to be my manuscript and try (but not valiantly) to overcome my panic, then decide what I really need is a nap.

That’s no way to write my twentieth book.

So here’s the plan: I will dedicate the next year of my writing life to reading, studying, experimenting, and figuring out how to banish Fear forever, and I will chronicle that journey on this blog. If you’re reading this now, you can check in with me periodically as I go along. I hope to unearth The Secret so we can all share. Or, if you’d rather, you can just check back a year from now—April 16, 2012—and see which one of us survives. I’m determined it will be me, not Fear.

Oh, and maybe my first step should be to stop writing Fear with a capital F. That’s giving it way too much respect. From now on it’s fear. Small f.

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