The first born, the first novel, the first job. There are doubts and believing others when they tell you it’ll work out on it’s own (till you realise unless you take a decision and act on it, nothing moves) or that you are doing something wrong and their way is the best way. At least it has been that way for me.
I wrote my first (complete) novel way back in November 2011. I got a publishing offer, which was not what I was looking for, as it was in an e-book format and I really wanted to feel my first literary baby in my hands. About six months back I actually found an agent willing to take me on and I was unbelievably excited. When she finally got round to asking for the completed manuscript I was confident and happily committed on a date of delivery. One week later I started a new sub-plot because I felt the pace was too slow. Soon planning the sub-plot took precedence and I started struggling to rework the time lines within my novel. The delivery date came and went and now it’s more than a month later, however, I have not yet written the changed version of my novel.
If that’s not enough, I have already started charting out the plot for our second novel, with the techie. I have committed to doing a group writing exercise every November and come what may I’ll have to drop all other writing activity and start on novel number two on the 1st of next month. This is the only way I’ll commit to finishing a novel without wasting time or re-writing and editing.
So what’s the bottom-line here? I basically can’t club creativity and organization. At work I’m an accountant and everything is charted out way in advance by me, with schedules, sub-schedules and reviews, and I’m comfortable handling pretty large teams on tight deadlines. On the other hand let me loose with a passion of mine and I lose track of time and place and the very real world of patient agents, inflexible deadlines and actually submitting your work so that it can be edited and published. Fingers crossed that she agrees to continue as my agent, once I submit the updated version of my novel.
What do you do when you have a creative deadline? Can you work with both sides of your brain at once?