Thursday, December 15, 2011

'Tis the Season - LOL or LOS?

Last week I didn't LOL - even once. Instead of being a Lady Of Laughter, I was an LOS - Lady Of Stress. I had finished a round of requested revisions on my current picture book, and was beating myself up for not starting something new. My idea bank was empty and every time I tried to make a deposit, my mind wandered to the family gift list, getting the house in order for three sets of Christmas staying-over guests, menu planning, wrapping, decorating, baking, etc. etc.

LOL? No, m'am.

Then one morning when I woke with yet another tension headache, I decided enough is enough! I gave myself a stern lecture: stop stewing about writing. Reassign your mental energy to Christmas.

This year my December WIP will be the Christmas cards. So be it.

Happy Hanukkah and Merry Christmas to everyone!


  1. "Reassign your mental energy to Christmas."

    That's the best line I've read all week, and I need to do the same thing.

    I even bought cookie mix so I can make cookies with the kids tonight (sorry, no time for scratch).

    Next up - yes, Christmas cards!

  2. Call me a silly loafer, but this is OFF TIME. My future stories will be better for it.
    But you sound positively industrious, with revisions etc. May all your stresses turn to eggnog.

  3. Okay, I'm lol'ing now. GREAT post! You are so right. I'm doing a lot of "thinking" but getting frustrated because I can't put my butt in the chair to get any of it down...and I think I said the same thing to myself (although not quite that eloquent..and I think it contained an expletive or two...) I love this time of year, but always feel so guilty putting my writing aside...but I agree with Mirka - this is OFF TIME. A break, a time for reflection and family...and chocolate :) Merry Christmas!!!

  4. Writers need annual leave days too! Where did I put those annual leave slips? LOL

    Linda A.

  5. Julie, Mirka, Robin, and Linda,

    Thanks for taking the time to comment.

    I guess everyone agrees - writers shouldn't feel guilty for taking a December break.

    Everyone agrees? That's a merry situation!

  6. Gale - I gave up feeling guilty about what I can and cannot accomplish at this time of year. I'm happy to let ideas percolate. By the time January rolls around, I am so ready for BIC!

  7. Gale

    You are so right - we regret losing time to write when preparing for Christmas!

    The other day, after the cards were done and gone, and I should have been working on the Christmas To Do List, I kept suddenly hearing the strains of an old WIP from 10 years ago. You might remember it - set in Scotland where the MC dares to go into the forbidden glen. I sat down at the computer and rewrote it from memory (mostly). I was excited about the story and then realized that I had lost several hours of Christmas prep time! But I still like my story of the glen!

  8. I got pretty sick of the Holiday madness a long time ago. When I started developing illnesses that were brought on by stress I said "forget it" The holidays aren't supposed to make us worse, they're supposed to make us better. So, now I do what I"m able to do. Some years I get cards out, some years I don't. Some years I have more decorations, some years I have less. As for gifts, I've cut down on who gets presents. I've made it about the kids and have decided not to put ourselves into debt for it. I"m much happier and healthier since I've learned to live with perspective and not get caught up in the hype.

    However, I wish I could say I've been writing. I've been in a bit of a rut but it doesn't have anything to do with the holidays. Just my blocked mind. I have been reading a lot though and I think that counts because it's like research. :0)

    Merry Christmas and Happy Holidays to you too!

  9. A little break will give you a well deserved and probably very productive fresh start! Enjoy the holidays -- if you stress over writing and the holidays, you will enjoy neither. Merry Christmas and Happy New Year Gale!

  10. Yes, all these comments prove that writers know when they need a time off to keep them sane.

    Here's hoping it will produce either viable new ideas or produce stellar revisions of old ones.

    2012, here we come!