Starting Over~ From Barrett’s Garret

hands on keyboardA Year in this writer’s life~  

As romantic a vision as it may be, I don’t really work from a freezing writer’s garret. My little old office does nicely. Today I have some writing news I wanted to share which will partly explain why I’ve been quiet these past few weeks.

I’m working on a brand new romance series called Sea View House, and I’m about halfway through the first book. The working title is The Perfect Wife, but that may change. So many things change from the conception stage to the final product that with titles, we always call it a working title until the final choice is on the book’s cover.

Funny how things come about. As the new year approached, I did NOT want to make any resolutions. Most resolutions fail. They fail after a week or two because most are tied into losing weight. As we all know by now, losing weight doesn’t happen by magic or by starving yourself for a week. Good stories don’t get magically written either. They need a lot of planning and a lot of time reserved only for thinking. Or dreaming. Thinking is not overrated. It’s a must.

By last November, I felt blah. I couldn’t put my finger on it, but I just didn’t have the energy for new projects. I’d lost my joy, my mojo, not only for writing, but for family fun. My golfer guy and I planned a cruise with friends, but honestly, I didn’t care one way or another if we actually went. With writing, normally, my hands start to itch for the keyboard. My mind drifts off, daydreaming about new characters and what they want and why they can’t have it. Now my mind was just blank. Burned out. So I looked back over the year to figure out the reason. I thought if I couldn’t, then maybe it was time to cover the keyboard and call it a day. Or a career.

Exactly one year ago, in January 2013, I officially started my journey as an author-publisher.  During the year, I released two full-length new works: a novel (Family Interrupted) and a memoir (Hopefully Ever After). I wrote over 60 short pieces for this blog (Starting Over), and participated in Facebook posts many times per week. I arranged for a blog tour, made personal appearances at several groups and was featured in a newspaper article here in Florida. I also gave as much support to other writer-friends as I could by sharing their FB posts or highlighting them in my blog.

bn LINDA BARRETT 2

book cover

I kept up with industry news through writers’ magazines, blog posts by agents and authors as well as through group discussions with my own lifeboat of author friends and professional author loops. But by the time I boarded the cruise ship on December 30th, I had no idea where my writing was going next or if it was going anywhere at all. I was ready for a vodka tonic every night. And ordered them!

I enjoyed cruising with my friends. I learned how to snorkel and was thrilled to see the gorgeous fish swimming in front of my eyes, their bright colors flashing through the water. On the ship, if I was hungry, I ate. Without having to cook. If I was tired, I slept. Without having to make the bed. If I was in need of a shower, I took one. Without having to launder the towels. I played a Team Trivia game every day. I window shopped jewelry and other pretties. I arrived home relaxed, still undecided about the next step on my career path, but not worrying about it so much. Yes, I was born a worrier.

About three days after arriving home, after food shopping, laundry and cleaning the house, I sat down at the computer and continued working on The Perfect Wife. Time flew. It took me a week to get back on Facebook.  So what? I waited a few days to reconnect with my author friends, but I didn’t worry about it. They’d understand.

I found the joy again. As always, it lurks in the writing waiting to be rediscovered. Truly a gift that keeps on giving in the best of ways. After publishing  fifteen full-length books, you’d think I’d know that by now. That I’d remember it when days are gray. Unfortunately, it’s easy to forget when  a long list of “should’s” and “have to’s” obscure it.

So my resolution this year is to be mindful of the joy. The stressors of writing must remain in a corner to be addressed when I can. Hmm….? Maybe I am shedding weight after all–from my mind, not my body.

As always, thank you so much for stopping by. I hope to see you for the next edition of Starting Over.

Linda

P.S.  My short story Man of the House will be available soon for 99 cents at all ebook stores.

Man of the House_300dpi(1600x2560)

 

 

 

 

 

 

8 thoughts on “Starting Over~ From Barrett’s Garret

  1. Roz Fox

    Linda,
    I love Barrett’s Garret even if it’s a fictional place. Glad to hear you got your writing joy back. Sea View House evokes a bunch of visuals that suggest great stories to come. Happy to see you blogging again. That’s where I’m burning out. I find it hard to think of things that might interest a broad scope of people. Busy people. Have a good, productive January.
    Roz

    Reply
    1. Linda Barrett Post author

      Hi Roz! I’m feeling so much better. Maybe I just needed a break. I’m enjoying the new writing project and now that I’m blogging at my own leisure, the stress is off. Not that anyone put it on me in the first place–except me. Always have high expectations, but truthfully, it was a massive amount of writing. I enjoyed writing each essay, but I worried about not working on my next book! There are still only 24 hours in a day… I’ve enjoyed reading your Heartwarming blogs. Keep it up. You’re good!

      Reply
  2. BethRe

    I’m so happy you found joy again. Your post put a smile on my face.
    Joy is important. Happy Healthy New Year to you!

    Reply
    1. Linda Barrett Post author

      Hi Beth! Thanks for sticking with me. You’ve got a bird’s eye view of the “glamorous” lift of a writer. I will still post here from time to time and look forward to keeping up with my friends. I’ll also post here first when new work is ready.

      Best,
      Linda

      Reply
    1. Linda Barrett Post author

      Amen, sister. Good luck to us both. If I can’t find the joy, there’s just no point. So I’m deliriously happy to have finished about 20K in the first Sea View House book. It’s a real Linda Barrett work… TTYS :)

      Reply
    1. Linda Barrett Post author

      Hi Donna – it’s so good to see you here! I’m so happy, too, to be back on track. I’ve never, ever experienced a burn-out like this before. So, I was flummoxed. Allowing the stress to flow away has saved me for the writing. And it’s creating stories that’s what’s really important to me. Hope you’re doing well and that the new year brings you happiness, health and prosperity.

      Linda

      Reply

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