I’ve finally caught up to myself. Between working and getting sick and my husband getting sick and my daughter getting sick, I’ve managed to finish going through the critiques that I got from my writers group. Which basically means that I’ve made it back to the point where I’d edited to before. Which means I’ve still been working, but my progress meter can’t be moved forward. I should be moving it forward quickly from here though. This tax season is incredibly slow, so I’m sure I’ll have plenty of editing time while I’m at work this week.
In the meantime, we’ve got more snow. So I suppose I’d better get to work so we can see some flowers and grass soon. I’ve decided that it’s going to continue being cold and snowy until I don’t need it for my revision work anymore. And if I don’t pick up the pace soon, people in Topeka might start getting cabin fever.
I have discovered that now is the perfect time to be revising my novel. In my first drafts, I didn’t really bring much weather into play. I never had much trouble making word counts, so I never felt like I had to describe weather and such in miniscule details in order to get the words. So, it was mostly glossed over as I worked toward just getting the story down.
But, as I’ve been going through the revisions, I’ve realized that there should be a lot of cold going on. Things begin with the main character worrying about surviving the winter on her very meager paycheck. And then she wanders off for a months long journey without meeting any snow along the way. And with the severe drought issues plaguing the world, maybe she still won’t run into snow. But she should definitely run into some chilly mornings, when her breath turns into fog in front of her. There should be cold nights, spent beneath a blanket, her teeth chattering as she fights to ignore the numbness of her toes. There should be cold winds that steal her breath away and leave her cheeks feeling burned. And all of these things are things that I’ve become reacquainted with recently, since it’s snowed several feet in the last few weeks. It’s been cold, then less cold, then even colder than before. My fingertips have gone numb from shoveling a driveway. My toes have gotten wet from the snow and frozen in my shoes. I’ve gone to bed and cuddled up beneath several blankets because we were trying to save a little money and keep the heat down just a little.
And all that stuff, means that I still remember cold as I’m writing all the soon to be wintery stuff. Which just creates a new reason to make my deadline of the 25th. Because even if I don’t submit to ABNA, I’ll still want to get these revisions done while I still remember what cold feels like.
So, my husband works nights. And if I’m working (which I hope to be doing soon), he’s the one that has to get up with the baby. Which means she needs to be on his schedule. And that means that when I’m not working, I tend to fall into their schedule of staying up until 2am or later and sleeping in until 2pm or later. But now that I have an office for myself, a deadline (ABNA submissions begin January 25th), and the prospect of less time in the very near future (as soon as I get scheduled at H&R Block), I realized that sleeping on their schedule meant that when I was awake, they were awake. And when they’re awake, I have trouble getting writing stuff done. There’s just so much other stuff to do. Diaper changes, meals, the required cuddling with the baby time. It all adds up to not much writing work done.
So, I set the alarm for a few hours earlier. And I actually got up. And I actually went into my office, and I managed to work uninterrupted for three hours. It was probably the most productive I’ve been since NaNoWriMo. And it just started my day off on a good foot. I ended up feeling more on top of things for the rest of the day. Which was really a great feeling. And it will definitely encourage more “early” mornings when I can manage them. Also, since I woke up early, but the baby’s bedtime didn’t move, it was basically like adding 2-3 hours to my day. And really, I didn’t need to be sleeping so much anyway.
As an aside, typing on a computer is much less comfortable when you’re trying to keep your heating bill low so the thermostat is set a little lower than usual. I almost went to get my gloves. Especially since the vent in that room is closed and we haven’t put plastic over the window yet (we’re way behind with that stuff). It was definitely a chilly three hours of work. But that just meant I had to focus on the writing in order to keep from getting too cold.