For the last three months, I’ve been fighting with the school district my kids are enrolled in. Mediators. Advocates. Documents. Charts. Graphs. Conversations with our doctor. Talks with the educators who, albeit unintentionally, put my kid’s mental health at risk. This despite my continued pleas that they understand what their interactions were doing to my child. So, yeah, lots and lots of fun.
It’s been an actual and legitimate reason why I haven’t been as active blogging, writing, or keeping up with social media. But, to be perfectly honest, it’s been an excuse I welcomed. I have a storyboard full of post it notes, outline after outline for stories I’ve yet to work on, and drafts upon drafts of posts I’ve yet to complete. I’m stuck and exhausted and the hardest thing to do is actually begin.
Now that my child as a district appointed at home tutor, my excuses and rationales have all but run out. So, here I am at my laptop, watching my small person and their tutor studying the social and economic differences between our hometown and Mexico City. This is an automatic two hours every weekday when nothing is stopping me from writing. And yet, several days in and this is the first time I’ve taken advantage of it.
I’m scared. My first book poured out of me. The main difficulty I had was staying within the recommended word count limit for young readers. I knew what all my characters sounded like, how the air smelled on the coastal kingdom, even what the rocky path felt like going to the docks. I knew every country on the map of my world, including the ones I haven’t written about yet.
But now that I am to work on Book 2, I’m lost. Their story isn’t finished and I know what’s supposed to happen, but I’m at a complete lost of how to pick up where I left off. I look at my notes upon notes and still wind up empty. It’s really frustrating because I know every major plot point I want to hit from now until the end of the series. I know the other nations I want to create, the cultures I want to introduce, the character developments I plan to add. The only thing I don’t know is how to start without the cliche’d “Once Upon A Time”. I almost never use it unironically, so the fact that I’m without a starting point makes me want to weep into my soggy cereal and cold coffee.
I know it will be okay and I know I will find my words. But right now, not being to access my creativity (which is usually the easiest thing for me to do) makes me want to give up. I won’t. I don’t want my kids to see that. I don’t mind them seeing my frustration or knowing I have writer’s block. It’s important that they understand the ups and downs of work as well as the cost of doing what you love. We teach them that success isn’t always measured in money, but how hard you work at something and how consistency is rewarded.
It’s important to me that all my kids know this, but especially my Type A thespian. My 11 year old daughter is equal parts geek, fashionista, and theatre junkie. She wants to do theatre professionally and I want to help and support her do that in anyway I can. Wanting to pursue any creative job can be daunting and frustrating, but if it’s what you love and you’re willing to go for it, you shouldn’t be stopped. I want to be the example to all my Small People (TM) that hard work is rewarded, but perhaps her most of all.
So, I’ll find the words. I’ll put the pen to paper. And then, I’ll do it all again for book 3. But my brain is stuck on sleepy. And, coffee isn’t helping. So, I guess I’ll just keep hanging out here until it wakes up.
I’ll take any ideas if you have them.
Creative energies and caffinated brains to whomever needs them.