Posts Tagged ‘Time’

I’ve mentioned on this blog more than a few times that I make sure to write down my ideas on Word documents. This way I don’t forget them. I have a few separate lists to store these ideas, depending on the kind of idea it is. One list is just for ideas that will likely be short stories or novelettes (assuming they don’t end up evolving into something longer). And today, I had three new ideas for stories, which I made sure to put on that list. This brings that list up to a thousand ideas.

You read that right. A thousand ideas. Some good, some bad. Some are very short, and others will end up longer than most novelettes. Some are horror or dark fantasy, others are science fiction or regular fantasy, or some other form of speculative fiction. A few are erotica, because as I said in that video yesterday, I think there’s an art to writing a story where the story is told through sex. It’s something I might want to try someday.

I’m not stating this to brag. I’m just stating a fact. And you know what? I’ll never write most of them. There’s just never enough time.

It’s the sad truth of writing. We creatives have many ideas over the course of our lives. But rarely, especially in the world of writing fiction, do we get to tell all of them. Hell, I doubt even big names authors like King get to work on all the ideas he has. But it’s especially hard for those of us smaller names. We work day jobs, pay bills, run errands, eat, socialize, try to stay healthy, and try to sleep enough to function the next day. And in-between all that, we carve out time to write.

I said a lot of this when I had my five-hundredth idea, almost exactly five years ago today (what a coincidence). In fact, I’ll say again what I said in that post (which you can click here to read): Time’s a quick bastard. And it’s all we can do to keep it with us so we can get the best of your work down on paper. And maybe then edited and perhaps even published.

There’s enough time in the day for this.

And how can you tell from the trove of your ideas which ones are worth spending time on? Hard to say. Usually I can tell from the idea phase, but occasionally I write a first draft and I realize this story is crap, why did I ever try to write it? I guess the best thing to do is just to go with your gut. If you’re really passionate about a story, it’ll show in the writing and in the story, and you’ll be able to work on it over and over again, until you’re able to share it with others (hopefully, anyway).

Well, I’m going to get back to an idea I think might be worth working on. I just wanted to talk about some of the things that went through my mind as I started nearing a thousand ideas. And I wanted to talk about something other than Rose for once.

Speaking of which, tomorrow is the last day to buy the ebook version of Rose at a discount price (I couldn’t help myself). So if you want to check out the Kafkaesque fantasy-horror story of a young woman turning into a plant creature (and that’s just the start of her problems), now’s a good time to do so. I’ll include the links below, including for the paperback and audio book. And if you end up checking out the book, leave a review and let me know what you thought of it. Helps me out in the long run, and it’s nice to hear what you think.

Until next time, my Followers of Fear, pleasant nightmares!

Rose: Amazon US, Amazon UK, Amazon Canada, Audible

Hey Followers of Fear. I actually have some bad news to dispense today. Yeah, I know, bad news. That’s not something I usually put out on this blog. I prefer to keep things upbeat and kind of funny here, because I’m a naturally upbeat and kind of funny guy. But occasionally I have to dispense with some bad news, and this is one of those times.

The fact of the matter is (this is not the bad news. That comes later), I’m writing slower than I used to. And I mean much slower: I started working on the third draft of Rose back in June. It’s August, and I’m still working through Chapter Five! Usually at this point of a draft I should be finishing up the edits, but I’m still in the early stages!

What’s to cause this slow-down of work? Well, the main reason is that I’m working a full-time job now, and that’s pretty time-consuming in itself. And unlike other jobs I’ve held in the past, there aren’t as many moments where there’s not a lot to do and I can sit back and write. Even Germany had more than a few of those moments. But in my current position, there’s always plenty to do, so I don’t exactly have that many moments to get out the laptop and work on a manuscript.

And when I get home, I don’t exactly have that much time either. I have to eat dinner, take a shower, make my lunch for tomorrow, and go to sleep at an earlier time so that I can get up early and be at work on time. That leaves only a few hours to write in the evening. Sometimes less, if I have errands to run after work.

With that in mind, I’m cutting a few things out of my life to make more time for writing. I’m cutting out the number of shows I watch so that when the fall television season starts, I’m not spending hours and hours streaming what I missed (I don’t have a TV or Cable yet). I’m also cutting back on the amount of time I spend on YouTube, because as fun as those videos can be, some of them can be pretty time-consuming (especially those videos of gamers playing horror games that I like so much). And–and here’s where the bad news really comes in–starting in September, I’m cutting myself back to two blog posts a month.

Now, I’m sure one or two of you are saying, “But Rami, we like seeing at least two blog posts a week from you!” Well, I like blogging around 2-3 times a week as well. But blogging also takes up time. Depending on the post, it can take quite a bit of time to write. Time I could spend getting through whatever story I happen to be writing or editing. I’m taking up time just writing this post! And because of that, I feel that I need to spend less time on this blog and more on the stories that I love writing and I love people reading.

So, unless something special comes up–a new review or interview, an important update on the projects I’m doing, or I’m pissed off at a recent tragedy in the world and need to vent my frustrations–you’ll be seeing much fewer posts here than before. This also means that I’ll stop doing #FirstLineFriday after August 26th. Not permanently, I may do one or two on occasion for an upcoming book or some other special occasion. But I won’t be doing one week after week. It’s just too time-consuming. I may try to come up with some other tag or meme where I do something similar to #FirstLineFriday (I know a lot of you enjoy those posts, and I do too), but at the moment I really can’t afford to keep doing this week in and week out if I want to get more writing and editing done.

On the bright side, I’ll have the opportunity to do more Reflections posts about the writing craft or about my own work. I used to do those quite a lot, and people really enjoyed them. However, I don’t do those much anymore, mostly because they’re the most time-consuming of blog posts. Now though, with hopefully a bit more time, I can write at least one a month and share my thoughts or have interesting discussions on writing and daily life.

I hope no one decides to stop following me because of this (I know some people stop following YouTubers if they don’t constantly put out new videos, so I assume the same can apply for blogs), or that they leave me because #FirstLineFriday was their favorite thing ever. It’s not because of you guys, it’s just hat I need to write, and if I don’t write, nothing gets done, and I get angry at myself. And that’s not something anyone wants.

Have you ever reduced the amount of blogging you do so you could focus on other things? What were the results of that?

I’m getting very naughty. First I’m swearing in Facebook posts, now I’m swearing in the titles of my blog posts.

Recently I had my five-hundredth idea for a short story or novelette since I started keeping a list. It was actually last night as I was getting ready for bed. I was thinking of an SVU rerun I’d watched earlier in the day and I thought of a minor character in the episode and what might’ve happened if he’d done some things differently in that episode. That birthed an idea (ah, Law & Order: Special Victims Unit. One of these days I will do a post about how you’ve gotten in my head and given me so many ideas for stories). Anyway, it occurred to me that this would be my five-hundredth idea. And then I asked myself how many I’d actually at least gotten a first draft of. And today I counted.

The total count: 17. Yeah, only 17 out of 500 have at least made it past the first draft (what state they are afterwards varies). This was about the amount I expected, though I’m not happy about how little I’ve written. When I was thinking about this last night, I thought to myself, Time’s a quick bastard. It moves by so fast, and between school, the hurdles of getting a job, practicing German, the Netflix binges I keep getting myself drawn into, and everything else going on, you can’t keep up. Too bad. Some of these story ideas are really awesome.

That’s the sad part about being the author. You want to be able to write all the time, to not have to sleep or eat and the only distractions are ones you want to get distracted by and that don’t take up a lot of time. Sadly, reality is not always so pleasant, and we’ve got to deal with it how we can. As much as I would like to write more, as much as I would like to get a few more items on that list crossed off, I know that I don’t always have the time for it.

And I would like more time, definitely. I would. And maybe someday I will have more time. I know friends who’ve gotten publishing contracts or have gotten enough sales through self-publishing and they find more time to write and edit and publish and market. True, this often comes after many years of writing, when they’ve had careers, built up portfolios, had other stuff work for them. It’s something involving luck, ambition, hard work, dedication, and of course time.

Funny, time’s like money. You have to spend it to make it. Time’s not just a quick bastard, time’s a hard one to work with. And of course sometimes you don’t get the time you look for. Or you do but there’s family concerns or people want you to devote your time to other stuff because suddenly you have more of it. It’s a tough life to live, knowing that the time doesn’t always work with you in your writing career.

Still, I’m not letting time–what time I have–get away from me. After so much time, Video Rage is finally getting edited. I’ watched a documentary tonight over dinner that’ll help me with a story I’ve been struggling with for over a year. I’ve even figured out what short stories I might work on after I’ve finished with Video Rage, and what I’ll do after those are done. What little time I have, I’ll make work for me until I have more.

Time’s a quick and tricky bastard to work with. But I’m not going to let time get the best of me. Eventually, I’ll get time to work for me, so I’ll be the most prolific author I can be.

Until then, I keep doing what I’ve done since I first started my goal of writing to become published: just one word at a time, until the story comes together.