Thursday, October 9, 2014

Writing at 3 AM With A Cold

Being sick sucks more than a Michael Bay movie. It's even worse for a writer/author who is trying to make it in this business. You are trying to maximize your time and energy towards your goal of finishing that next story or selling the current one. When you are sick you don't have any energy. You just want to take some Nyquil, curl up into a ball, and sleep. Unfotunately you may end up staying up until 3 AM working on something that is already past it's deadline.

I was in this situation last Monday. I usually work on Grim chapters on Sundays, but this past weekend I had a job to do that went quite a bit longer than expected. No, not quite as long as the Jolly Green Giant's uh.. just no. Don't ask me how I know. I just do. Anyway, I didn't get a chance to work on it then. Monday night my softball team had a double header and I played both games. During the course of the night I could feel the sickness sinking in like the Titanic.

I have a few tips to help you accomplish your writing goals while still sick.
  1. Eliminate Distractions - This is generally a good idea when writing. I am still sick now, and I can tell you that all day it has been like I have a severe case of A.D.D. I have been distracted by every little noise or blinky thing or shiny thing that I have come across. Earlier today I spent five minutes staring off into space thinking about Hello Kitty. It all started with a blinking light on my phone.
  2. Ramble On - I tend to go on and on about nothing when I'm sick. Type out your nonsensical ramblings within your story. You can always delete the paragraph about rainbow flavored dust bunnies later, or it may be so hilarious that you have to keep it. Magic can happen within these moments.
  3. Read, Edit, Reread, Re-edit, etc.. - The delirious ramblings of a medicated sick person are definitely not something you want to go out to the public unedited. You might need to have a friend read what you wrote before submitting it for public consumption. I had two parts in the last chapter of Grim that I posted where I had thought out the entire paragraph in my head, but didn't type it out. That put gaps in the story that I had to fill later. It's a good thing I didn't hit submit as soon as I finished!
  4. Manage Your Time - You should delay or cancel anything on your schedule that you can. You're going to have a lot less time. Staring off into space, seeing tiny pink elephants, looking at the shiny thing, thinking about how awesome chocolate is.. Your time will disappear quick. You also need to make time to rest.
  5. Get Better Quick! - Rest as much as you can. Drink your fluids. Do everything you need to get back to your normal healthy self. Once you are better, you can play catch up if needed. Don't stay up until 3 AM like I did. I paid for it the next day. I was completely wiped out the next day. Learn from my mistake!

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