Under Pressure

Yesterday, on the last holiday of the year ;), I woke up late (for me), told myself I’d run to Target (bought a microdermabrasion kit with one of my gift cards, still have one left) and the grocery store with a stop at JoAnn Fabric and I’d be home writing at 10. I didn’t make it back till 11 and I felt guilty.

Um, why? Why did I put myself under that kind of pressure?

Because it’s what I do. I stress out over getting my book to my agent so I can take advantage of this whole GH thing. I stress thinking I want to sell before July so I can have a pink ribbon. All things beyond my control.

Why do I have to put myself on a schedule? Why can’t I just let things come as they will? Is it just that I’m afraid life will get away from me?

How can I stop?


Today – the King William Fair – arts and crafts and food on a stick. Always see my very first principal there – his son has a house in the neighborhood, so it’s a big party. I’m looking forward to antichuchos and fried Oreos.

EDITED TO ADD - NO FRIED OREOS!!!! WAHHH!!! AND NO ANTICHUCHOS (REALLY SPICY SHISHKABOBS!) I consoled myself with a bloomin' onion and part of a funnel cake. Grease is coming from my pores.

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Stacy Dawn said...

It's because if we don't make it work, no body is going to make it work for us...just don't forget to give yourself a break sometimes!

Sounds like fun!

Anonymous said...

(((MAR))) You were only an hour behind your own predetermined schedule. Step back and see what you'd say if I wrote this to you in a letter. You'd be whacking me upside the head! I understand setting deadlines for yourself, and feeling bad when you don't meet them. But on the other hand, there are some days when it is OKAY to put something else before writing. Hold on, I'm not saying that it's okay to be a willy-nilly. But the fact is, if we always put writing as #1 before anything else, all we will have is a dried up writer and a family who resents us and friends we've lost because we haven't talked to them in ages, and...well, you get the picture. It's a balance you want, Mar. To give each their own honor. It's not easy to achieve...sometimes I think I give my writing less than it deserves, and I made moves to change that this week...but keeping in mind "to each their own honor" reminds me that it is okay to stop writing after a good session, or delay a session, if something that deserves its own needs just a little bit more time.

YOU, Mar, deserve to be on that list. You need to give yourself your own honor, too. Then when you do sit down for work, your water well will be full and ready.

I hope you have a great day at the Fair. Without guilt!


Rachel Vincent said...

I do the same thing. I set a series of goals for myself. Yearly, monthly, weekly, and daily. Number of books/pages/words written. It never ends. And I feel like a complete and total slacker if I don't make one of them

Unfortunately, the truth is that I make less than half of them, because I set very high targets for myself. No matter how much I accomplish (unless it's 4000 words in a day, which hardly EVER happens) I feel like it's not good enough.

We have to learn to give ourselves a break now and then, before that break becomes a breakDOWN.

Enjoy your fair. Even the weird fried cookies. ;-)

MJFredrick said...

Stacy, you're dead on that if we don't do it, no one will. As for the break - I'm almost done entering in the revisions on DLB. After that, no writing till school's out (how long do you bet I last?)

JoAnn, you're right - if you wrote this to me, I'd be smacking you. But I still felt guilty.

Rachel, exactly - even when we make the goals we want to push HARDER! Gulp.

I need to make it stop.


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I'm a mom, a wife, a teacher and a writer. I have five cats and a dog to keep me company. I love bookstores and libraries and Netflix - movies are my greatest weakness.
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