I have a bad habit of overwhelming myself with projects. I try to work on multiple stories and usually end up scattering my brain because I’m going in too many directions. I know I need to write or edit one thing at a time, but my mind starts hopping around going “if we write MORE things though, we’ll have MORE things that will get finished quicker!” Only, that’s not really the way it works. I end up taking much longer to complete things than if I had just concentrated on one project at a time.
I’m sure there are some writers that can work on multiple projects and bring them to successful completion. However, I’m not like that–or, I haven’t taught myself to be like that yet–so the overbearing anxiousness to complete a bunch of stuff all at once is counterproductive for me. I’m dealing with that this morning, as I have several projects started and I’m trying to organize which one I’m going to work on when. The only thing it’s doing is making me feel overwhelmed and keeping me from writing anything at all.
I don’t know why I insist upon trying this route over and over when I know it doesn’t work for me. Maybe I think someday it will? Maybe I think my laziness and procrastination will magically disappear so I can create from the time I awake until the moment I go to sleep? Maybe I think I’ll actually stop being distracted by the TV, internet, and a million other shiny things and get more writing done? HA!
As I move into my self-publishing ventures, I find myself even more anxious. I thought the opposite would happen, that I’d feel more relaxed without the pressure of publisher deadlines. Instead, I realize I’ve put the burden entirely on myself to create and produce and I need to do so much. Write more! Edit more! More projects! I’m going to try to calm down and focus on one thing at a time instead.
There’s a million ways we make ourselves crazy as writers. Do you find yourself trying to do too much and overwhelming yourself?
Urban fantasy and paranormal romance author.