I’m obsessed. My mind won’t quiet.
Thoughts of more pull me out of the present. Dreams that reach magnitude distract me. Questions circle non-stop. How can I make it better? What does this need? Am I really making the best use of my time? Doubt is never far. Anxiety is a circle that feeds itself. Life is one as well. Desire is something all itself. It’s hard to focus when everything seems so constant.
It dawned on me recently that my need to write, to have a successful career is so great it often registers to me as selfish which is partly because it’s hard for me to see around. It’s all I want to do. There are times I look up from hours of plotting and character building and look around. A million things need attention. My family is waiting for my company. I can’t help but ask myself have I lost my mind? Juggling family and work is a difficult balance for everyone. I know that. But there is something unsettling about spending two years writing a book only to have it ready when that particular genre isn’t selling. No word written is wasted. One path leads to another. Every plan won’t pan out.
I am learning so much right now. It’s both exhausting and addicting.
There is a certain triumph when I get a lead or a yes. When a new idea strikes the possibilities seem endless, the sky opens and is filled with stars. That feeling is something I crave. Constantly. But when things don’t seem like they are going anywhere confidence starts to dip even though I shouldn’t let it, dark clouds roll in. My obsession only grows. I dig deep, try to figure what didn’t work, what I could do better. It comes back always that I need to do more. Write more. Improve my descriptions, write more convincing queries. Mostly just write more. So, most of the time I do.
There are whispers. Am I working too much? Are my priorities out of whack?
Occasionally the term workaholic gets to throw in my direction. I instantly dismiss it. “No, I’m not,” I say. “It’s just the phase of career I’m in.” In quiet moments I wonder, do I have a problem? I make excuses for myself: I have to finish this one thing. Weekends off don’t apply to my type of gig. My work is also my hobby.
I can’t help but wonder if all this noise I’m creating hinders me. Are there times I am unrealistic? Probably yes. But what fun is to shoot too low? Then I shut off all access, put my head down, and just write. Write for me, for the sake of the story. Those moments are my favorite. The summer is nearing its end and of course being the over-analyzer I am, I wonder. Did I make the most of it?
Honestly, I don’t know.
Did I work too much?
It’s hard to shut off that part of my mind that plots and plans. But I do absolutely cherish the people in my life and the moments we share together. I’m so thankful for my supportive family and awesome friends. My dogs also rock. Walking away from my desk just doesn’t come easy, but disappearing into my office does. It’s like breathing. I’m hoping being aware of the imbalance is the first step.