Wednesday, April 23, 2008


I'm nearing completion of the first draft. (Although my counter says 100%, I'm not quite there. I gave up guessing my final word count. Apparently I'll be closer to 100k after all.) By this time next week, I should be done with it, sooner if I can only remain focused. I always thought it would be impossible to distract me from my writing once the end was in sight, but instead I've become panicky, wavering between strong resolve and The Fear. Husband, quite rightly, thinks it's because I'm scared of what's next. Obviously I have a lot of editing and rewriting to do to make this piece polished, but I'm closer to the goal than I've ever been, and that is exhilarating and terrifying in doses.

This weekend I had some major panicking episodes. I've always known what I was giving up by writing full-time and sacrificing a salary, benefits and retirement, yet as time marches on the sacrifice feels bigger. Our friends are buying houses--real homes. We cannot afford that, and unless I work, we won't be able to for some time. But then, although I'd have the space to write, I would lose the time.

After my panicky weekend, I tried to strengthen my resolve and get down to business to finish what I started. However, I noticed a job posting. It's the job that would be my dream job if I couldn't write for a living.

Do I apply?

I will definitely finish this draft before the job starts, but I wouldn't finish the edits, so I would have to work on them during evenings and weekends. A very possible task, but a downshift from full-time writing.

Do I charge ahead until my novel makes its way out into the world of agents and possibilities--possibilities fraught with either failure or success--and let this possibility slip through my fingers, worrying about a career and a house later?

I know the answer lies somewhere within my own heart, but once again I've over-thought the situation and can't tell the light from the shadows. In truth, either path could be the right choice. Both could lead me the direction I want to go, but in this moment of confusion, I feel like I've lost my way and I'm standing at a crossroads. Which way do I go, left or right?


Anonymous said...

Oh god I loathe decisions like this. All I can say is choose from the heart and then don't look back.
You'll feel better when the decision is made.
Good luck!

And well done on nearing the end, hope you can keep the panic at bay.

Helen said...

I often feel with jobs if it's meant to be you'll get it. Why don't you apply and see what happens. That way if you have a 'God what am I doing I don't want this job' moment you can withdraw your application. But if you don't apply and you suddenly think you should have done and the closing date is passed...then you can't do anything about it.

Nothing is set in stone. The actual process of applying may make you realise what it is you want to do. It did for me a year or so ago.

SueG said...

Helen makes sense to me. Especially if you think the first draft can be finished before you'd have to start. Best of luck, and let us know what you decide!

Angie said...

A, I hate big decisions too. I just need to clear my mind so I can see what my heart is saying.

Thank you, Helen, that is great advice and probably the best option for me. :)

SueG, I will keep everyone updated as I move forward.

Anonymous said...

Trust in yourself, breathe, ground. You know the answer deep inside yourself.


Angie said...

Thank you, Hullaballoo. We really should listen for our inner voice more often...I just have to be quieter to hear it! ;)
Hugs to you too.

Thanks for all the encouragement, you guys. It means a lot!