Lexifabricographer For when the right word just won’t do…

December 14, 2015

The end of the year

Filed under: fitter/happier,wordsmithery — lexifab @ 4:39 pm

Bloody hell, it’s the middle of December already?

The last few weeks have been outstanding examples of that weird time distortion effect where you have million things to do, and you’re always busy doing them, but the holidays still haven’t arrived yet and when oh god when are you even going to get to slow down and relax?

Maybe that’s just me. Probably not though. I’m seeing a lot of weary-stressed faces around the place.

End of year anxiety is a real thing for me and I guess probably most people. I’m one of those people who measure their lives by the next holiday, or afternoon off, or commitment-free weekend. I don’t lose myself in my day job (I barely comprehend what that would even be like for people whose day job is not “hang out at the waterslide” or “read all these books and tell us when you would like a cup of tea”), so breaks away from the office are much-coveted preciouses which the filthy hobbitses can pry from my cold dead hands.

This year, happily, the anxiety in question is just expressing itself as being really bloody tired all the time, which is inconvenient but a hell of a lot better than being a grumpy stress-head. Where it does hurt is in rebuilding my writing habits. It’s pretty hard to get much momentum if you sit down to write at 8 pm (when the kids go to bed) and you’re nodding off by 9.

Still, my efforts to get something new on paper every day are paying dividends – I’m feeling my way back into the novel, I’m starting to find it easier to figure out what I have to write next, and I’m getting a clearer picture of the (revised) ending I’m working towards. I don’t know why it surprises me every time, but it turns out that the more time I spend thinking about a problem, the clearer the solution tends to become.

So for the next two weeks, my goal is to get the novel draft across the line. I have a nominal word count target of 85,000 words, and I’m somewhere about the 78,000 mark right now. So it’s very achievable, with a bit of concerted effort (especially since it matters less that I make the target than that I get to a point I can attached the words “The End” to).

This is also the time of the year to look back over the goals I set for myself (not to mention the revised ones) and see how I went – what was too ambitious, what was not ambitious enough, and where I lost focus or should never have tried to focus in the first place. I’ll get to that in a couple of weeks, I think, after I wrap up the day job for the year and get through the seasonal festivities (and the first day or so of the Boxing Day cricket test, not that it promises to be a very exciting one).

Season’s greetings, folks.

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