Permission Granted

I haven’t edited my novel in four days. I didn’t intentionally mean for it to fall by the wayside, but in all truth I haven’t really done any form of writing activity in this time. I started reading a book. Yesterday I even managed to scribble a few notes down on a short story that needs some significant changes. I have happily ignored any schedule or intent linked to my novel, and I realise that I don’t feel guilty at all.

I’ve been ill. Not so ill that I probably couldn’t have worked on it in short bursts, but the generally unwell feeling I’ve been experiencing has given me a suitable excuse not to bother even attempting to edit. No one is going to notice if I haven’t written or edited any words today. Equally though, there is no one I can delegate the work to in my absence. In short, the work just won’t get done.

And you know what? That’s okay.

The only deadline I’m working to is my own. The only one really wanting to get this story out there is me, and I’m not willing to trade in my health, my social life or my down time to make that happen. In the past I might have, but not today.

The novel will be finished when it’s finished. As tautological as that may seem, it has the gleam of truth to it. I can try to rush, I can put pressure on myself, I can work as hard as I possibly can…or I can take my time, relax a little, accept that the process takes time and take things at my own pace, rather than try and enforce one to meet an arbitrary deadline.

So I’m taking a break. Giving myself permission to take a step back. Maybe if I can lose the sense of duty I have applied so recently to the edits I will rediscover a deeper need to enjoy the process rather than labour over it.

Not just the novel, but the blog too. It’s all become a little overwhelming. I have plenty of time to dedicate to all these things – writing, editing, blogging – but right now I’m struggling to feel the joy that comes with it. I’m not viewing any of the hurdles currently overcome as achievements either. I’ve lost my zeal, and I think I just need time for it to rebuild.

So, certainly from the blog, I’m taking the week off. No more posts until September. Annoyingly, the only thing keeping me going the last couple of weeks have been my blog stats: I’ve already had a record-breaking month (most views in any month and highest average per day since I started), so I can afford the dip in viewings. It will perhaps be a relief not to have to check them all week!

Anyway, I’ll see you all in a week or so. Happy writings, Good Luck editing and all the best with life in general. πŸ™‚
See you soon. x




11 responses to “Permission Granted

  1. Pingback: Are you having fun? | Cat Lumb: The Struggle to be a Writer

  2. After reading this blog I feel much better about the fact that I haven’t done any research on my book for 2 weeks! I’ve had a new kitchen fitted which has stressed me out so can’t concentrate, but I now have no table in the kitchen and my desk upstairs is covered in junk from the kitchen so I have no where to work. I was feeling rather stressed about this as well (as you can see, I get stressed quite easily) but I’m the sort of person who has to have a dedicated space to work which is, a table.

    To compensate, I’m reading a historical novel from the era I am writing about and also reading my writing magazines so don’t feel too guilty.

    I keep forgetting, I’m supposed to be having fun with this!

    • I’m so glad that reading my blog has helped you realise not to be so hard on yourself and put undue pressure on yourself! It IS about enjoying the process, and as you point out – even if you’re not writing you’re researching by reading so that still counts!
      I hope the kitchen is settling in and you manage to clear your desk space soon. We all need some time to relax sometime, so don’t let the guilt get the better of you. πŸ™‚
      Take Care,
      Cat x

  3. Good for you honey! We all need a break every now and then. I KNOW that one, you lose the fun, it becomes a chore, and you don’t want that.

    Put your feet up and chill πŸ™‚


  4. I agree. I think it’s okay to “give yourself permission” to take a break. You are your own boss! Personally, I am the same way. I struggle. Most recently, I have tackled building up my social media platforms. Educating myself about effective strategies. It can get overwhelming. So, enjoy your step-back! Hats off to you, in regards to your blogging! Also, your website is looking fantastic! πŸ™‚

    • Yeah, though it IS easier said than done πŸ˜›
      Hats off to you back, as you’ve given yourself that permission ^_^
      And thank you, I love the theme you have on yours!

    • Thanks Diane. It is worthwhile to take a break if you can – although I haven’t yet decided how I’m going to wean myself off the lethargic nature I have become used to over the past few days… That will be another struggle, I’m sure.
      Thanks for popping by, commenting and complimenting the website. πŸ™‚
      Take Care, Cat x

  5. I’m on day 3 of no-editing, because I’m reading a non-fiction book and my flat needs cleaning. Your brain needs a break sometimes, and then you can return with a fresh sense of the work.
    Also, if you need a hand with editing, send me a message. =)

    • Thanks hon. May take you up on the offer of help with the editing. Have forgotten just where I was in the process – this is my first time on the laptop in five days! It’s been lovely!
      When I get back to it and I feel lost, I’ll be most grateful for the offer of help. Thank you!
      Take Care, Cat x

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