Daggers, or puppies.

I often find myself sitting uselessly in front of my computer with one or several of my manuscripts open and waiting.

I’m often excited, at the potential of the work. Excited about where the story will be going. I’m also anxious. I’m worried I’m not getting enough done. Worried I’m not doing the story justice, and that I could never do it justice. There’s a huge spectrum of feelings I travel along when I sit down in front of my work in the morning.

I’m noticing a shift in my default reaction, though. Before, I would look at them and in a way those words would look back, and I’d feel vaguely taunted. “Wow, have you got issues. You may never get this done, at your rate.”

Now, we are both older, and the taunting has given way to something else. Something more sympathetic, or pitying maybe, and fatigued. The story longs for completion as much as I long to complete it. Instead I hear, “Look, we’ve been at this dance long enough. We’ve seen every corner of this ballroom. My shoes pinch and my feet are tired. It’s four in the morning. Can we just be done with this already?”

Yes. I’d like that too.

If only I could stop staring at you. Just. Staring… at you.

Really, I don’t know how to stop it. Sitting down and getting started for the day continues to be the hardest part. Might be the pressure. I’ve always been one to duck my way out of high-pressure situations, opting to throw on my headphones and pretend the high stakes don’t exist.

I’ve been working on my longest and oldest in-progress piece for almost eight years. It’s gone through rewrites, four restarts, a couple of major plot changes, three different names for my protagonist (third time’s absolutely the charm), one Nanowrimo attempt, and a loss of over 100 pages worth of progress.

So how long? I mean, really?


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