Life, Updates, Writing Process

Revision Diaries: Stalling is Normal

As much as I’m enjoying working through my manuscript, it is a lot of work. My brain really isn’t handling “more work” right now. My day job is starting to ramp-up, socializing is coming back, and of course the puppy.

Puppy Blues

Turns out, having a tiny puppy is a TON of work. Not just the “oh yeah you gotta take it out and train it” type of work, but like…there’s also the sleep deprivation side of things. Think taking out puppy every 2 hours during the night the first week to get it going on house training, and listening to it scream because it hates being alone in a crate when you put him back. So when you add in trying to build a schedule for a creature that barely understands that you’re there to take care of it, there’s a lot of crying from both sides. Also…it’s like having a tiny shark swirling around your ankles sometimes.

Cue many people going “yeah duh” but like…you don’t know until you’re actually in charge of the razor-toothed demon that steals your heart just by falling asleep. I will not compare this to having a baby, because I don’t think this compares at all. It’s just very hard and stressful and similar to caring for a creature that has no agency…but this one has teeth and can run after you.

People call what I’m going through the “puppy blues.” There have been a lot of emotional swings dealing with the changes, which I never do well with because anxiety. I can go from being super proud and happy with puppy for him doing something cute or catching on to training, to being sad and feeling guilty when he acts out or I lose my temper with him or my partner. Luckily, I have a ridiculously understanding partner helping me get through these wild swings. (I honestly do not know how he’s putting up with me right now. I mean most of the time I’m crying because I’m frustrated with myself!)

Okay, but what about writing stuff?!

So, while I get back to a better state of mind, my revisions have stalled out a bit. This is a little sad as creative writing is where I sort things out. Revising is very different than drafting though. It’s not freeform like drafting is. There’s not so much room to air my grievances in a fictional form when I’m reading and filling out a spreadsheet.

I’ve stalled out on motivation. I can still manage to read about 1-2 chapters in a sitting. I’m about half way through my 30ish chapters. I’m going to watch the next lessons of our course and hope that kicks my butt back into gear. I’m certainly not giving up on the book, because I have a lot of ideas as to where it should go. I need to get my motivation back.

These things happen. A lot of getting back into it starts with taking care of myself. So I’m going to put that first. They call this in the writerly circles the “Creative Inhale.” I’m exhausted because I’ve been doing nothing but exhaling in my life. So I need to rebalance this, rebalance myself, and get back to my OWN routine as well as my little puppy’s. Little Nugget was moody without a schedule, of course I’d be too.

How do you balance yourself when you’re feeling out of sorts? Where do you start to get your routine back in order? How’s your writing going?

Happy Writing!

Rachel

2 thoughts on “Revision Diaries: Stalling is Normal”

  1. Cute puppy…aww. 😊

    I can’t really give you any writing advice since I only write essays whenever I feel like posting something to my blog. However, I do try to draw every day and am constantly interrupted. One reason is, I have a cat. I have been trying to train her to a harness for months. It has been a battle of wills. Somedays, I win. Other days, she does, because I give up trying to wrestle her into it. To make matters worse, she is not a kitten. She is seven going on eight years old. She is also neither declawed nor defanged. It is a good thing she doesn’t use them. She simply refuses to keep her feet in the harness and just walks, or runs, away. There has been times when I have had no trouble putting her into it and she actually purrs, knowing I was going to take her outdoors. She loves going outside with me. (We haven’t gone much farther than the front porch. I am also trying to get her to walk while in a harness. It’s going to take time.)

    Furthermore, I can relate to your putting your puppy on a schedule. I think it is a good idea. Lately, I have had to work towards putting my cat on a schedule so that I can somehow find time to work on an art project I have in mind. I’m trying to build the schedule around her natural one, such as, when she likes to eat and sleep, and when she is most active during the day. I find it is impossible, after many tries, to work on anything while she is in the same room. She bothers everything. She has to be the part of whatever I am working on, even going so far as to lie on my papers (I draw on a flat surface), step across my laptop, or drink the rinse water for my paint brushes. She has to be the center of attention. I feel guilty about having to put her in another room, but it’s what I must do to get anything done. I make sure she has what she needs and close the door. It’s not forever. We will reunite; playtime, hugs, and treats. ☺

    Now that I think about it, maybe you have been feeling guilty for putting puppy in his crate. Puppies, like little children, have separation anxiety. They have a way of tugging at our heart strings. It may seem harsh, but it is okay to let him whine. If you don’t make a habit of going to comfort him every single time he does that, he will eventually learn to quiet himself. Peek in every now in then to make sure he is okay, but don’t go to comfort him when there is absolutely nothing wrong. Otherwise, you would be teaching him, you are going to come to his “aid” every single time he whines, and you are not going to get any rest.

    Like

    1. Yes to all of this! I used to have a cat that loved to play pretty aggressively too. It was hard to get work done so I understand your pains.

      We’re doing much better with the schedule and he’s even adjusting to being crated more often, knowing that it’s not a permanent thing and it’s just for naps and nighttime, or that we’ll be back in a very short time. Things are going much much better. 🙂

      Like

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