I feel as if I've been let loose on the writing front at the moment. For the past few years, I've had back to back deadlines, have taken on way too many commissions for my own stress levels - on average 20 children's books of between 4,000-10,000 words each plus a full-length novel each year, working only two days a week (as well as LOTS of bleary-eyed evenings). My work diary has been mapped out like a military operation - must write three chapters of Book A on Wednesday, start second draft of Book B on Thursday, proofread Book C on Friday morning before playgroup pick-up etc.... It has been a bit of a slog, to be honest, and while I've been grateful for being offered writing work in the first place, I have still found myself yearning for for a lighter workload and more hours in the day. Oh, and my evenings free again, please!
I guess it's all part of that freelancer's mentality - say yes to everything for fear of never getting any work again. And for a long time, we struggled financially, what with me popping out 3 kids back-to-back (well...that's how it felt at the time) and my other half only working part-time, so....
Anyway. It all feels unnervingly different now. Since the end of last year, I've turned down quite a lot of work. Eleven children's books, I've just counted. It was all stuff that would be under a pseudonym, not really my stories (and not really my cup of tea either, a lot of it...) So I took a deep breath and said no, no and thrice no (in a rather scared voice). Instead of sweating over those commissions, I've now got space to concentrate on the new novel, and more of my own children's books, with my name on the front cover and everything!
It's great on one hand, having more time and space but I do find it a bit daunting. What - no deadlines for anything until the end of the month? But how can that be???
PS 25 minutes on the treadmill this morning. 4km is now tantalisingly within reach. Whoopeee!
Where the World Ends
11 hours ago