Writing Through Stress

You may have noticed a lull in my blogging.

Or, not.

In April, two important things happened. First, Soul Mate Publishing released my second novel, SCATTERED SEEDS. Second, I moved with the clan chief to a grand, old house.house

Things were looking up. I had two books on the market and two manuscripts nearing the halfway mark. At long last, I had an office—and organization.

office

My new hometown rolled out a welcome I could not have anticipated. Mifflintown, Pennsylvania has to be one of the most author-friendly places on the planet.The sign in my yard created excitement and chatter.

sign

My blog hits and sales increased. I scored interviews with both the local newspaper and a little hometown magazine. My high school English teacher invited me to speak to his 10th grade class about writing historical fiction.

 

school

That last thing terrified me, and I nearly declined. What could I possibly have to offer teenagers? I agreed, telling myself if I could encourage one future writer, it would be worth the horror. Imagine my surprise when I actually enjoyed the day. Nearly every student listened with great focus and blatant enthusiasm. It turned out to be one of the best days of my life, because I faced something that frightened me, and I not only completed the task, but exceeded my own expectations. In my experience, days like those are few and far between.

The next day, the Universe punished me for dipping too much joy out of the happiness jar. Everything fell into the shitter. Like, really fell into the shitter. It was as if storm clouds gathered and rained a sticky form of hell, then stayed there. Calamity struck—repeatedly. The little free time I had completely disappeared. These days, I’m smelling my clothes to determine their degree of dirtiness. I’m learning how to dress, dry my hair, and put on makeup at the same time. I’m exhausted, stretched too thin, and suffering the physical and mental manifestations of unbearable stress.

I’m not alone. I’ve asked around. Many people are off-balance right now. This can be especially hard for us artistic types to bear. It’s difficult enough to create under the best of circumstances; it’s impossible during a catastrophe.

I keep telling myself that nothing stays the same for long. In another month, I might complain that I’m bored. (I sure hope so.) I have two manuscripts I’m dying to complete in that awesome new office of mine! There’s no actual writing going on, but that doesn’t stop the characters from attending barn dances inside my head.

I’m determined to just put my head down and soldier on. One day, I’ll have a minute or two of free time.

How do you get through stressful times?

Fiction That's Plaid to the Bone

Posted in Writing
3 comments on “Writing Through Stress
  1. Love the yard sign. What a clever way to promote your book!

  2. I would love to set out a sign like that but living out in the boonies on a gravel road only the birds and a few passing deer would see it. There are a grand total of 3 houses on my road and one of them is vacant now. Thank you for sharing and I haven’t figured out how to get past my “stress” yet to continue writing. I lost my brother last year and it just knocked everything out of me. I haven’t found a way back yet.

  3. George says:

    Jules……head up, one foot in front of the other, pray….and give it time.

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