Monday 18 April 2011

O is for...Organisation (or lack thereof)

So, I was a little ahead of this whole A-Z blog thing, and that turned out to be very good news. Because my new house does not have an internet connection. It started out as something liveable with, and anyway my husband and I had far too much work to do in the house to procrastinate on the internet. It was rustic, and old timey. And then I realised just how spoilt and technology dependent I have become. I couldn't write on my blog, or more importantly read other people's. My access to forums was gone, my access to news was gone (why not watch the television, you say? Or buy a newspaper? All good points, but the petulant child in me just wanted to whine). I'm currently writing this in my parents house, as I need the internet for my journalistic work. Oh interweb, how I've missed you...

We moved house on Friday. Our car (with keys), my parents car and even my Grandad helped move boxes, bags and furniture. The move wasn't helped by my husband and I's laid back approach to packing i.e. throw it all loose in the back of the car, it'll be fine. Chaos ensued, but I am pleased to report that all belongings plus Roxie the Labrador are now happily installed in our new house.

So, organisation. I'm starting to realise the importance of it in the abstract, though I'm not so good at it in practice. Fibromyalgia has actually helped in this regard. It affects my cognitive functions so on a bad day I forget everything. I forget what I was saying half way through sentences, I forget what I was going to do, I forget important things like closing doors, and turning the oven on, and ordering a broadband package for my new house in advance before I move in. So I have discovered lists, they are my saviour. All I have to do is remember that I have a list and everything is well.

Now that I'm getting nearer to that oh-so-scary activity -submitting to publishers- I have had to become more organised about my writing. When you first sit down to write a novel, it's all about Words on Page. This is the novel that you're going to finish, and you find an hour here, a half hour there to make it happen. Some days you write thousands of words, some weeks you don't even open the file. But that's alright, because you're writing regularly, your word count is going up, and everything is rosy in the garden. But then you realise that writing is addictive, and if you don't put some order on matters everything else in your life will suffer for your art. Which is noble, I suppose, but my muse doesn't make me tea, give me hugs and buy me a chocolate egg on Easter Sunday so I need to keep my marriage going.

I don't plan my novels, but I plan my work. And that is today's project (after I finish the work that pays the bills) to write up a time frame for completing manuscripts and edits for every project I have going on. Which, is fairly organised.

I should really be writing 'P' today, rather than 'O'. And I have to do 'Q' tomorrow as part of my query blog hop. If I run the letters together as a sample of a 'Pathetic Query', does that count?


  1. I nearly go crazy without the Internet, but secretly I wish it didn't work during my "writing time" as it's such a distraction! I hope you get everything organized soon.

  2. Good luck with the new house!!! I hope you get cable there soon! I can't wait to hear how your query letters get answered by the publishers! Then to buy your book in the store!!!! How will that be?

  3. I look forward to your query and doubt very much it will fall under the 'pathetic' range :)
    Wagging Tales - Blog for Writers

  4. Organization can be important, but I don't always like it. My closet... is a mess! I don't even close the doors to it, things just kinda come out of it and try to crawl across the floor. I just smack them down and push them back.

    When I write, I rarely organize on a first draft. I just sit down and write it. Yes, when I go back to start editing I realize that I'm missing plot points and my main character has two different middles names. I even gave a character two different birthdays once. Oops. But when it comes to publishing, I really need to get organized to start sending query letters. :)

    Good luck with your new house! :)