The Fourth of July is over, summer’s heating up in most places, and the thought of “vacation” is either past, coming up, or simply non-existent. It’s the dreaded Summer Slump! And if you’re a writer, that can segue into fall…and winter…and spring…
As usual, I’ve had my grandchildren several days a week this summer. They’re companionable little creatures, and we do “Mimi School” on a relaxed schedule. One keeps her nose in a book constantly! However, I found myself in the middle of rewrites/edits/more rewrites of a novel just as summer began, so I couldn’t afford to step away indefinitely--especially when this novel has been hanging around on my computer for something like four or five years!
So--onward! I just printed out ($$forthelasttime$$) a rewritten x 4/edited x 3 ms of The Legacy of Diamond Springs, a romantic suspense with no fewer than TWO love stories, an historic setting, a cast of baddies bent on revenge, and long-buried family secrets literally oozing up from the grave. This is no time to stop. Also, I’m trying to keep up my three-blog-a-week schedule.
So how does it all get done with munchkins underfoot and the temptation to say, “Hey, it’s summer--time for a vacation”?
So far as the blogs go, I plan then a month in advance from several sources:
2. A list of past blogs to reprint or tweak
4. Musings about, excerpts from, character sketches related to my own work
Once I have my blog calendar filled out, it’s simply a matter of writing--and, of course, doing any research related to the topics.
But I’ll admit the rewriting and editing is more difficult. Sometimes I pack up Penelope the Lappy or grab the purple notebook with the printed ms and take off for a place where I’m not distracted by real life. The local McD’s comes to mind--or a sandwich shop in town where you find lots of folks busy at work while they munch. Sometimes, if I can schedule it just right, I go “visit Al” at the Ohio Club downtown. There’s something about slipping into the cool, dim depths of Mr. Capone’s old hang-out which encourages slipping into the imaginary world of my story and its characters.
Kicking the Summer Slump to the curb and keeping it there requires determination, focus, a little imagination, and a lot of get-up-and-go.
How do you deal with your own Summer Slump?