A friend recently asked me what my writing time looked like. She was genuinely curious about how I managed my time. I’m not really sure what I answered in that moment but lately I’ve been thinking about her question and am reminded of a cruise my family took a few years back.
During one of the days at sea two of the entertainers, very accomplished jugglers, held a little seminar to teach passengers the art of juggling. We joined our kids who were eager to learn this new skill. The performers started everyone out with one ball, to practice tossing it in a perfect arch. When that was mastered a second ball was added. They told the rapt audience that only after perfecting two balls could a third be added.
Well, that is kind of how my life as a writer feels lately – like I’m juggling multiple things.
When I first began my writing journey, The Perfect Blindside was my only focus – the only sphere I had to worry about. I spent years writing, editing, re-writing, sending it out, collecting rejection letters, etc.
Eventually when the novel was picked up by Pauline Books and Media and the long editing process began, I started to write a second book – adding a second item to my juggling act. I admit there were a few times when I had trouble tossing around the two projects. Once during the revision process my editor sent back one of the new scenes she had asked me to write and questioned who the new characters were. I couldn’t believe I had used the character names from my second book in this new scene for the first book.
But for the most part controlling the two writing spheres was not too overwhelming.
This past summer when The Perfect Blindside was being printed, I put the finishing touches on my second book and actually began a third novel. Even then I had no idea how challenging the juggling would become.
Even thought The Perfect Blindside is a finished book and printed, the work doesn’t end. The never-ending marketing aspect has begun, for if no one knows of the book, no one can buy it.
So now I find my writing time split three ways. First, I’m constantly trying to find ways to market The Perfect Blindside, set up school visits, contact bloggers, etc. Second, I’m trying to secure a home for my second book, which can be a very time consuming process full of query letters and researching publishers. And third, my new writing projects need quite a bit of my time and attention to get written and edited.
This new stage is exciting because I enjoy having so many projects but it’s more challenging than I would have imagined. If I focus too much attention on one – the others fall. I just wish I had it figured out and could juggle it with the ease of those entertainers on the cruise ship.
We all juggle different parts of our lives and struggle to keep them all in motion. Lenten season seems to be the perfect time to remember that we must rely on God and let Him help us when we’re weary from managing it all. Our loving Father will always be there to help us keep everything perfectly orbited.