Last year about this time I was writing up to 3000 words a day. I was finishing a book every two months!
This year, these days, I’m lucky to write 500 words a day and on a good day it’s close to 1000 words a day.
Okay, someone like me, who’s always self diagnosing herself for every little thing surely has to look back in time and figure out what in the world went wrong!
See, at first I was ready to blame it on the stories getting more difficult now that I have so many characters to fit into one book. But now, I’m writing book six, starring two sisters and two vampires, along with brand new creatures and worlds. And guess what???? The story for book six is not hard to imagine, or actually write.
As a matter of fact, my imagination is forcing ME to keep up with IT. It’s snapping its fingers and saying, “let’s go, let’s go…”
***Taking a long exasperated sighhhhhhh…..***
Then what is it? What’s my problem?
So I put together a list of all my books because I know many readers really wanted me to do that. And as I read the publication dates on each one and recalled the moments I spent writing the books, I realized what the problem is!!!!
First, let me tell you what makes us, US. Yes we have an active imagination. But we also have the ability to objectively read the world. We can pull the layers back and rebuild them with our imagination–hence, creating fiction. That’s the best way to explain this peculiar phenomenon. And so, in order to do this, we have to see YOU and you can’t see US. Does that make sense? Probably not. First, I need to blend into the walls. Which I find hard to do because people always want to pull me off the wall. And if I’m off the wall, then I cannot concentrate. I can’t think.
Still not making sense????
There are two factors that make writing difficult here in Seattle and even after I moved out of my apartment in California in December of last year.
The first thing is, Seattle has this severe coffee shop culture. I already blogged about my coffee shop conundrum. Well, that hasn’t changed. They’re still way packed out and with people who are really buzzing socially but pretending that they’re not. I’ve seen people come in with baby strollers at eight at night or twelve noon and sit at a table reading for hours with the baby in the stroller! And then there’s this guy who will occasionally get up with the baby, walk it up the street and around the block and then come back into the coffee shop and sit down and put the baby back in the stroller!!! I kid you not. Not exaggerating. Oh, and I LOVED the couple that let the toddler loose on the nasty walked over carpet and let it crawl WAY back there where I was sitting and near my ankles. I was like thinking and looking at them like, “what the heck people… get your baby!!!” Really, not exaggerating. And this is only the beginning of the weird coffee shop behavior in Seattle. It’s crazy. No one does this in California. NO ONE. I’ve never seen a baby in a coffee shop for more than fifteen minutes–okay thirty at most. Mom comes in, get a drink, finishes it and leaves. Not couple with baby there for hours and sending the baby to crawl back there where I was… First of all–GET THE BABY OFF THE NASTY CARPET YOU NITWITS!!!!!!!!
So, I’m used to people actually going to the coffee shops because, really, they have a paper due and their roommates are distracting or the coffee shop keeps them away from the TV (I raise my hand on this one) and the internet (raise my hand on this one too), and I can sit there without worrying about having to get up and give up my space for someone else like at a restaurant. Then, there’s the general change of scenery. And my home office space has always sucked–planning on remedying that when I go back to Cali to live in October. I think there’s a coffee shop in LA that caters just to writers! Like you can pay for a monthly membership or something. Back then, I didn’t have the need for it because finding empty coffees shops in LA, anywhere in Southern California actually is easy, but boy oh boy, if they had that in Seattle, even for the two months I have left here, I’d sooooo do it. I’d pay a $100 a month just to get in the door, and even more. $250!!!!
It’s so hard to write when you can’t be part of the wall EVER.
It’s easier to be on the wall in California.
That’s one major problem–coffee shops suck here… and really coffee shop culture does not = good coffee. If you made bad coffee in LA, you’d go out of business!!! Not here apparently. The coffee has been bad every place I’ve gone. Watery, inconsistent, BURNT and acidic–all the listed, some of the listed or one of the listed, switching up on different days of the week. Heck, I even stopped drinking coffee because it’s so bad here… I kid you not. I haven’t had coffee in two months! Because it doesn’t matter how bad the coffee is, people will pack the place out anyway!!!
Anyway.. So, I stopped going to the coffee shops as frequently as before because I get more writing done at home–which isn’t saying much.
Which brings me to my second major problem…
I made a mistake and rented a loft apartment with vaulted ceilings!!!! (Oh and no air conditioning like a dummy). And I already knew that I couldn’t work in that kind of space!!! It’s not cozy enough. And then, the plan was to have a live, REAL, city view. Not the play city view that I have with cut of the bay. And I can’t open the blinds because I’m facing a huge building. True story… When I first got here, I used to open all the blinds that cover my windows because at least if I worked looking south, I’ll see all the REAL buildings… And I kept working and working and living, watching TV too, cooking and then one day I’m on the phone looking out the window at the cut of the water view that I have and I feel that dang energy you feel when you’re being stared at and low and behold all of these guys in the sober living building across the way are staring into my apartment!!!!! Sigh….
So, yeah.. no privacy…
The good news is that I’m halfway done with the first draft of book six. The better news is that I’m heading for a long trip home on Friday. I’m planning on three weeks max but I’m going back for a few weeks in September too before I shut down this apartment and move back to California for good on October 1st (maybe the end of September–I’ll see).
I’m hoping no vaulted ceilings and the lack of coffee shop culture will put me back on the path to 3000 words a day. Until then, trips home and forcing myself to get at least 2k words in a day, starting tomorrow, even in these conditions, will have to suffice (hey, I did three miserable years in the Army so I can definitely finish out Seattle and be productive).
Hopefully, soon I can report that word count down is now word count back up!
Another thing. I’m going to bed so late here because at 10:00PM the sky is only starting to dim. At 9:05PM, it looks like it’s early evening. Because of all the LIGHT, my body doesn’t really wind down until about 2:00AM or 3:00AM. (Shaking head)
But, no use crying over what’s about to change!
And excuse the typos, I’m up late frustrated about the bad week of writing I had that ended yesterday as it’s 1:57AM on Monday, the 23rd now. New day.
And boy if you read this far, then you must really be bored! LOL!!!! Or have time to kill 🙂 I promise you, I’ll write about the good stuff more than this stuff!
Peace and love!