Wednesday 3rd May 2017
The post-novel blues continued today. In fact, if anything, they got a little worse. It’s possible that health-related stress contributed to bringing me down, but I felt very despondent regarding my writing: everything I’m working towards isn’t going to happen, good things that happened were a mistake, I have a false understanding of my own ability, praise was misplaced.
Now, I know that this is just what happens to me post completing a novel (which is why I need a few days) but it’s still not a nice feeling.
I’m also feeling pretty rundown. It’s another reason I’ve not started anything new just yet. I wouldn’t be surprised if I came down something. Back when I ran Action-Figure, our busy time was during the Toy Fairs that ran at the start of the year. I’d work solidly from Xmas all the way through to Easter when my friend always had a movie weekend. I’d always come away from that weekend with the worst illness, simply because I was so run down.
So if I ended this week with a cold or something, I would not be surprised.
Thankfully with swordfighting and the like, I’ve not really got the time to write even if I wanted to.
I had an interesting discussion with my friend, CE Murphy regarding writing full time. I said the other day that writing fulltime would increase my productivity. I based that on the fact that when the day job was less demanding or when I’ve taken time off to get drafts done I’ve always been super-productive. But Catie (without wishing to put words in her mouth) essentially argued the point that the productivity was because I knew that I’d have to return to the day job.
Now she’s a full time author so I’d be remiss to ignore her advice anyway, but as a good friend it’s made me pay attention to it even more.
It’s interesting because I’ve noticed that a lot of full time writers don’t seem as productive as I am on these breaks. My strategy (if it can be called that) is that whilst I might not be able to out-talent them, I might be able to out-work them. But would the lack of something to butt up against my writing time, devalue it and make me less productive? If I only have an hour a day to write, I’m less likely to waste it than if I have 8 hours and know I’ll have the same again tomorrow. It’s an interesting point and one I’ve been thinking about all day.
I’d like to think that I’m disciplined enough to maintain levels of productivity, but it’s one thing to say that in theory. Whether I’d do it in practise is another matter.
The big event today was my trip to the hospital. When I last went I came away with a diagnosis but not knowing how serious it was. And then when the appointment never turned up after 6 weeks… well, I was glad I had the novel to distract me from reality, because it’s been very, very stressful the last couple of months.
So I was a bit pushy today, asking loads of questions. After leggedon I came to the conclusion that I need to own my illness and be responsible for ensuring that I’m driving it forward. I love the NHS but it’s all too easy to fall through the cracks if you have something non-standard.
The good news is that the blood test results are looking good. They still want me to go before a panel of doctors which will apparently take a couple of hours. It sounds like a test. I even asked if I needed to prepare anything. I was told that this is because I’m showing signs of a rare condition, but it’s not properly behaving itself and delivering all the expect symptoms.
So either: it’s a partial false alarm or I’ve got a ultra rare variation of an already rare condition. I told you I was special!
As a result I think the worry and stress of that fed into my post-novel blues. Nothing I can really do about it but accept it for what it is and hope it passes by the weekend. I suspect by tomorrow night I’ll be wanting to start on a new project.
If you want to follow more of my journey, then be sure to check me on my social channels. Likewise, if you’d like me to expand on any point mentioned above, please say so in the comments.
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