105 Ways to Give a Book

Finding the Track

I am so ready to get back on track, if only I could find the track itself. I wouldn't have thought that when I wrote about taking a bit of a blogging break that I would be writing it from a high point of my search.

Then I felt like I was being pulled back into the working world, not altogether reluctantly. Yet didn't know which form that work would take. Well, last month was a tsunami of stay-at-home mom responsibilities that gave me pause. Teen needed glasses for the first time and started driving lessons. Tween had organizational issues with homework and you know, not turning it in, that needed addressing. Also Tween was cast in a community theatre musical revue, which is fantastic, but does require someone to drive her there a few times a week. (Pssst! Guess who that would be.) My husband hurt his back, and is still struggling with pain and stiffness. Meanwhile, I was both leading and managing cookie sales for two Girl Scout troops because my co-leader for each troop were having their own issues.

I came into this Spring Break week like I was sliding into home base - exhausted, relieved, and elated to have made it. All through this I was struggling with writing. Like, anything. I was getting writer's block on review summaries and Facebook updates. Even now, with most of the problems past, I feel clumsy on the keyboard. I'm not finding the flow I've always counted on. (Well, except for my Grow-Up post which I'll count as one of my new favorites.)

So today's post is one part explanation and one part inquiry asking this:

In terms of writing, how do you get back on track?

I'd love to hear from my writing friends, which is to say any or all of you.


The Diamond in the Window said...

Oh yes. That (especially in the "not handing in homework despite having done it" vein. argh). Getting back on track is, to me, the same way you clean up the house when it's gotten so out of hand it's terrifying. You just pick up the nearest thing to you. And then the next one. And then the next one. Which you just did, I think, with this post. Congrats.

Lesa said...

Hi-- I'm a newish reader of your blog and really enjoy reading it.

As for your query, I have no idea.

I've been off track with writing/blogging for 2 months. My first grader has homework every night and there is so much fun stuff to do like gardening-- and not so fun stuff (taxes still hanging over my head). I was just feeling bloggy again but was led astray by Goodreads and Pinterest.

So I've decided to blog at my own pace and not worry about it anymore- it is all fun!

Jone said...

I understand. Been there. I took the Slice of Life Story Challenge in March featured by Two Writing Teachers and that helped.
Sometimes, life just provides detours. Don't beat yourself up.

Kirby Larson said...

A long walk and a latte can help! Also, don't forget: thinking counts as writing. And I downloaded an app called Voice Memos to my phone and that has helped me capture ideas when I'm on the run, as it sounds you are most of the time.

I ditto what Jone said: Be gentle with yourself.

Anonymous said...

I find that sometimes the trap I get caught in is feeling like I can't finish something I'm about to start writing. When I'm the most sane and productive, I tell myself that OF COURSE I'm not going to finish a piece of writing in one sitting. I'm going to start it and then finish it tomorrow or whatever. That makes me feel calm and gets me to START, which is often the hurdle.

And what everyone else said.

And the Grow Up post was inspired. It's one of my favorite of yours, too, although my all-time favorite is when you came up with BACA. And also that time when you broke up with a book.

Ruth McNally Barshaw said...

Ah, it's not a fun place, where you're at right now. Most writers have been there. Some of us live there a long time.
Start small. Keep going. It'll come back.
Deadlines help me, but there's a lot I still struggle with, deadline or not.
Consider what you're up against. Anyone who's balanced one kid's needs against another's, anyone who's managed a Scout troop, anyone who's been involved at school and in extra-curricular stuff knows it's hard work, all of it. Acknowledge that part and give yourself a break. Do what you need to get through the next couple months til school lets out. Attend only to the most important things until balance is restored. So, if you don't *have* to write, then don't.
If you must, then do the minimum. Get the sentences down without worrying about whether they sing. We don't all get to do everything perfectly throughout our lives. We all have down times. We're all human.

Rebecca Reid said...

I've been pregnant and now I have a newborn, so I can relate to feeling off track! I just jumped back in to posting, pretending like I haven't been gone....Hope life calms down for you a bit...but my experience is it doesn't normally do that!

Greg Pincus said...

The key, you see, is never get off track. Cuz, like, there's no way to get back on track once you're off. No. Way. Except finding something - anything, really - that you actually want to write. Doesn't matter if you never show it to anyone. What matters, for me, at least, is that I want to write it for me. That almost always gets me going again (in theory, anyway, because as noted above I've never gotten off track because there can't possibly be a real solution!)