I can hardly believe it’s the first real day of summer today. I ask myself where March, April and May disappeared. It seems the days pass so quickly when so many things are going on, and when we come up for air, we try to account for all the days that have gone by.
This past week in particular has been absolutely hectic. I have been working on my latest book off and on due to unforeseen circumstances that seem to have been circling me since I returned from my winter vacation. Throughout these busy months I was caught up in the worry of my dear aunt who passed a few weeks ago while trying to get back to my latest book and working on revisions intermittently.
When I finally put my head to the grindstone and got into third round revisions, I discovered that I was not happy with this book and sent it to an editor friend with a great pair of eyes for a beta read. Sometimes, it’s very hard for writers to find what they feel isn’t right when they’re constantly going over their own work. My friend gave me a lot of positive feedback, helping me figure out what needs to be moved and changed etc., but then it dawned on me. Bingo! My book wasn’t one book, but two. I thought I could meld past and present ideas together but it wasn’t sitting right with me. So, I’ve decided to separate it into two short novellas, which of course entails more writing and revising, thus this book will not be ready for edits until later in the summer.
This realization sent me scurrying through my Word files trying to pick out what should be moved, deleted, etc. But it became a daunting procedure. This is when I reminded myself of how badly I NEED TO LEARN SCRIVENER.
I promised myself after my last book that I would master the beast. But after watching a few tutorials, reading many publications, and reading ‘Scrivener for Dummies’, I couldn’t wrap my ahead around it fast enough, and found that I need to dedicate a few solid days to learning it. The program sits inside my computer, I have tried to fiddle with it, but I felt it was eating my precious time while so much was piling up that I’d just continue to use my prehistoric method of sorting chapters until I could dedicate the time.
So after much frustration, I printed out the manuscript draft and begin separating the chapters, sprawled out on my floor. And that is where they are currently residing, for the past four days. Why you may ask? Because once again, life has interrupted my flow of thought by Revenue Canada coming down on me for an audit. As if I needed something else to do!
As many of you know I moved at the beginning of the year, which left my income tax files buried in boxes at the back of a storage locker. I had to find the boxes and files and start digging for all receipts and files for not only 2014, but 2013 also. Fun wow! Not!
I lamented to my accountant, “Why on earth do these people pick on me, a tiny author, working her butt off trying to make a living with her costs to publish and advertise, far outweighing the income. And he answered, ‘Precisely, because they go after the small guys claiming write-offs and they want proof that they are not being scammed.”
So I once again dropped the book writing and revisions and spent the better part of this week searching, sorting, and photocopying receipts for the accountant to help me get this situation rectified and out of my hair. My dining room floor is carpeted with income tax files, and my living room floor is blanketed with book chapters. Thank goodness my place is ‘L’ shaped so we can walk through the kitchen to get to the bedroom. I ain’t moving that stuff until I can deal with it all. So needless to say my social interaction and blog reading has suffered once again. It seems when I finally catch up, something else lands on my lap. Oh, and I will add that for the fourth time in one year, MY LAPTOP DIED AGAIN. Surely I am being tested!
Here are a few tips you can all take from this:
1. If you’re writing a book, make it a point to learn scrivener (something I will be doing before this year ends!)
2. Make sure you keep all your receipts and files pertaining to income tax intact and accessible because you never know when Rev Canada or the IRS will call your name.
3. And never put off for tomorrow, what you can do today because you never know what else is coming.
I’ve recently been reading from a few author friends that they have been taking technological vacations, ie: time-out, or vacations sans laptops. I envy the way they can just ‘say no’ and take a breather without worrying about how much more they will have to catch up on when they return. I am going on a MUCH NEEDED vacation in two weeks and have been threatening myself that I will also go away without my laptop. The thought terrifies me, yet sounds so inviting. In fact my friend Sue Dreamwalker has dared me to do it, and I’m thinking I just might!
If any of you have discovered an orderly way to play catch up after taking a techno break, I’d be more than happy to hear your suggestions.