Thursday, September 20, 2012

... TIME?

It's something most of us never feel we have enough of, right?

Between work away from home, work at home, busy brain keeping you awake (admit it, you know exactly what I mean), families, dinner, being a taxi service, homework duty, hunching over your keyboard and typing furiously in the middle of the night--well, maybe that's just me. But I doubt it--there never seems to be enough time to do everything right.

Anything right.


I've been thinking tonight, though, about how much of that furious rush is self-imposed.

Example: Today.

As some of you know, I'm a wife and mother of four, from college-age to first grade (and if you don't think going to #1 Son's high school graduation the day before #2 Son's Kindergarten graduation wasn't funny, I can't know you).  I also volunteer in the library at my younger kids' school, shuttle people around, try to spend time with a parent that has a chronic illness, teach religious education to fifth graders at my church, and try to slip in a little writing here and there. And editing of a new manuscript. And research for another book. I volunteer with Fictionista Workshop (, a fabulous resource for writers, and work as a freelance editor for several authors, which I love. In between all this, I tend to read a lot.

Hey, can't be a decent writer if you don't read, right? Part of reading, to me, is writing, so I review most of what I read as well, both on GoodReads and Amazon.

Because of the publication of my novel, the reviewing, and the editing I've done I've had some lovely opportunities come up: first, I'll soon be reviewing novels for the New York Journal of Books (! My dream! Free books and an excuse to read them! I spent a lot of today setting that up.

Second, I've been approached to edit for an up-and-coming political site. This is right up my alley, as my degree work was in political science and history. Getting prepped for this is taking time, too.

In between, I was dealing with paperwork for my oldest's college, and beginning paperwork in preparation for starting the next phase of my own education: after more years than I care to think about, I'm exploring the possibility (see how I hedged my bets there? I'm tricky--remember that) of working toward a Masters in English.

See what I mean about how much stress is self-imposed?

But as I sit here tonight, punchy and tea-sodden, I keep asking myself, "What would you give up?"

The family is off the table, of course (though there are days...).


Reading? NEVER!

Writing? PFFT. AS IF.

Reviewing? CAN'T. JUST CAN'T.


Maybe I need stress to be me.

Regardless, tomorrow, after a quick morning check of emails and posting this brain dump, I'm not turning on the computer all day. I will walk my horsedog. I will visit with my mother. I will watch a horrible movie with my Little Man.


And I refuse to feel guilty.


  1. Autumn, Well, you have me beat, I think, family-wise. I "only" have two children, and one is off in grad school, giving me lots of ops for long-distance worry. But BOY do I know the feeling. Do you feel a need for quiet and solitude in order to write anything close to truth? I find that's a non-negotiable, yet so easy to ignore...

  2. Good for you getting away for a bit. It's a great kind of busy when you love every single thing you do. You're well practiced in managing a lot already, so I have no doubt you'll be juuuust fine.