Tuesday, July 6, 2010

On: Time

How's my writing been going? It's goin' good.

The structure of my writing week is working well so far. I have set aside quality writing and editing time, and for once in my life my procrastinating ass is sticking to my timetable.

My next problem to solve is deciding on More Time. How much more time will I give to this "second career" of mine? How much more of my free time do I sacrifice? At what point does the sacrifice become worthwhile? What is the tipping point from quality sacrifice into loosing other quality parts of myself that I like?

Because I'm working full time four days a week, any writing done outside of Writer Mondays will be on my own recognisance - nights and weekends. At the moment writing is huge fun, but my personality is such that if I thrash something I lose interest. So, how to find the balance to get results from my writing (ie: a body of work built up, publication), get better at it, not lose sight of other parts of me, all without devolving into hating what brought me to the dance.

At this point in my life, I have three other major hobbies - reading, crafts and computer games, specifically Guild Wars. My leisure time is extremely important to me - my leisure time keeps me mentally and dexterously stimulated in ways different to work, and also helps me retain my sanity. I do not do bored well.

Next month, I will have been playing Guild Wars for five years. FIVE YEARS. And during those five years I have been pretty hardcore - there have been months where all I ever did, every night, every weekend, was play Guild Wars. And when I wasn't playing, I was planning what I was going to do next (reading Wikis, plotting armour, planning Titles).

It's been great, I love Guild Wars, and it's a testament to the quality of a game that I can still play it five years down the track. But I have recognized that it's sucking my time - my reading has suffered, and worst of all my dedication to crafts has dissipated drastically. I'm very good at my crafts, and I turn out pieces for family milestones and for my own artistic satisfaction. I used to joke that I have a "twenty year waiting list" of projects - now I struggle to even finish milestone pieces on time.

I've been dealing to the amount of time I play Guild Wars lately in small bites: I've got back to reading more lately, and I'm pushing myself as hard as I can to finish priority craft pieces. However, I'm HORRIBLE at pushing myself, and I'm even worse if I'm pushed by outside forces. I am the only one in control of me.

In just her second post in her "Freelancers Survival Guide", Kristine Kathryn Rusch talks about "Priorities". I know I SHOULD dedicate more time to my writing, if I want to make things move along quicker, if writing really is that big a priority to me. To find that time, I need to slice it out of my leisure time. I really resent that, and that resentment is a big hurdle I have to get over. How can I resent anything that is supposed to be for the betterment of me, something I've always wanted, something that makes me happy?

I'm attempting to figure out how much more time I'd like to dedicate (ideally a full time work day, ha! Dream on, win Lotto), but it's not going to be easy with the thought that Guild Wars 2 is in the works - a new shiny that could potentially make me fall right back into old habits.

I don't like structure. I like my freedom. I will work on this.

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