Remember that novel I'm writing? Sure, I've mentioned it here before. Several times! Only, it's been so long since I've written anything worthy in my novel that I almost believe I have to stop saying "I'm finally writing my novel."
There's a quandary that's dancing all over my thoughts of what it means to "push through your writer's block." Here's the thing: For over a year now, I've been passively working on a website that will separate everything related to work, from everything related to my personal interests. Which means the goal is to retain this site as my personal one, and launch a different one for business purposes. In spite of the fact that I continue on, seemingly oblivious to how inadvisable it is to intertwine personal blogging and professional efforts in a single location, it actually bothers me quite a lot. But people, do you know how much work it takes to actually create an entire site from scratch? No. I don't mean the design. I have that pretty much locked down. The other stuff, though? The planning and goal setting and development of content? All that stuff is time consuming and, if you're like me and your eyes are often far bigger than your proverbial plate, then very often you'll just become daunted and put the whole business aside in lieu of designing the sites others are paying you to design.
Fair enough. We all have to pay our bills, right?
But how long can one go on, putting the necessary work aside, dangling the carrot of "one day when I launch xyz site..." as if it's just going to build itself? So I had a great long talk with myself a week or two ago, and I'm back on track. (Which is to say I am busting my patootie, working on this site during every spare moment available.)
The new site is much bigger than just putting up samples of my work and blogging about related matters. I'm adding a whole extra facet, as well, in which I will offer downloadable files - some freebies and some for sale at reasonable prices - and darlins? It's still daunting!
What does that have to do with writing my novel? Thanks for asking! Here's where my brain starts to hurt. So far I've only committed 2 hours a week to working on my novel, so you'd think that I could just compartmentalize that block of time, and keep writing, and all the other "spare time" (when I'm not working on these client projects, that is,) could be devoted to The New Site. And maybe that's what you would do. But for me, it feels like this insurmountable hurdle to put down the one project and turn my mental energy toward the book. I tend to be a "total immersion" kind of person. When I'm into the novel, I'm 110% there. During the writing, these characters become as important as the real people in my life.
The same goes for my website. These designs I'm working on are all-consuming. I have poured a shocking number of hours into the site this week. And? Today is the day I go to my writing group.
So what would you do?
Force yourself to return to the novel, and build discipline? I can do it. I can force myself, if it seems the best course of action. But I know the writing will suffer, and in the end is that wasted time?
Between now and noon, that's the burning question I'll be trying to answer in the back of my mind, as I work on things that have nothing to do with either project.
The good thing is that if I decide I can only handle One Massive Creative Personal Project At Once, I'll still be writing. My site has quite a lot of content needing to be developed. So maybe I should just go to my group, sit with the other writers, and continue with the momentum created with the design fabulousness that's surrounding me, only work on the written part of the site.
Here, in black and white, temporarily putting the novel on hold while I get my site launched by March 31st seems the most rational thing ever.
However there's a nagging feeling. And that nagging feeling tells me that these are just excuses. The nagging feeling tells me I'm losing my footing and that this rationalization is what will pull me even further from my writing groove. The nagging feeling tells me that if I indeed want to publish a novel one day, that I have to turn off he chatter of All That Wants To Get In The Way and write on, even when other things feel more important.
Help!!! Anybody care to weigh in?