Why haven’t I written my next book yet?
I have my reasons. Here are 26 of them…
Arctic conditions. Look, I really hate being cold, okay? Have you ever tried to type when it’s so cold you can’t feel your fingers? It’s pretty difficult. Nigh-on impossible, actually.
Busy building a miniature library. My good friend Jenn is actually to blame for this. She sent me the most wonderful gift. I am a person who loves books, libraries, and tiny things—and she combined all three in a box that contains everything I need to create my own miniature library, so I’m doing that first. It’ll inspire me to write.
Cleaning out the chicken coop. I mean, the chicken coop does need cleaning out every day but wouldn’t you know it becomes urgent just as I sit down to write?
Disaster strikes. The disaster I will absolutely by accident create in order that I must clear it up.
Editor: I need one to keep me on track. But wait: is that even an editor’s job? Do I get an editor now or wait until I have a steaming pile of compost to send to them?
Finding an editor. Been busy finding an editor, so I can get on with writing the book.
Glasses. I can’t find them, and my contact lenses are getting blurry. Gotta go and find my glasses first.
Haven’t got a huge block of time. Like, say, four or five uninterrupted years to research, think about, and write my book. Maybe six years will do it. And in the meantime…
Improv. I took up Improv recently and keep convincing myself that doing some improv practice actually counts as writing but I know in my heart of hearts that even though improv is legitimate creative work, it still is not a reasonable substitute for sitting my butt down and writing the next damn paragraph.
Just have to pop out and pick up a book. Yes, another book. A large part of writing is reading, you know. And researching.
Kvetching about not writing my book.
Lice. Sometimes I’m so itchy I’m sure I’ve got lice. I don’t, I always discover, but not until after a thorough investigation, followed by Google diagnosis and careful inspection of other people’s symptoms.
Minding other people’s business on social media. Yep, you can’t beat a good bout of “why am I not more like that person who is perfect and has written their book and is so damn smug about it.”
Netflix. Up yours Netflix. I could kid myself that I’m “researching creativity” but we all know the truth. You’re stealing my energy.
Oblivion. The computer game. I could kid myself that playing an immersive open-world computer game is a creative experience, but I know as well as you do that this is bullshit and I’m just avoiding doing the damn work.
Publishers. How do I find one? I could self-publish. But is that even really becoming an author? Isn’t that just vanity? I NEED EXTERNAL VALIDATION DAMMIT.
Quicksand. It gets everywhere you know. You’d be amazed how fast my good intentions to write sink below the surface.
Right. I’m doing it. I’m sitting down and I am writing The Book. Right after I answer this email…
Step away from the email.
Time for a break. I’ve been staring out of the window for four hours now, it’s definitely time to change location.
Understanding the ins and outs of cover design. And finding a cover designer. And explaining to them why it doesn’t matter that I don’t have a title, or even a synopsis, because maybe we can start with the cover design.
Valid anxieties. Will my book be valuable? Will anyone read it? Oh god what if nobody reads it. Oh god what if people with eyes read it. Maybe I should just not write it.
Wheelbarrow Castle. There’s a house in our village called Wheelbarrow Castle. I certainly need to know why it was called that. Better investigate...
X-rays—how do they work then?
You know what, I need another cup of tea.
Zzzzz. Self-care is important. I need a snooze. I’ll start when I wake up.
You can see why I haven’t written the thing yet. There’s so much to do and so little time. And the world has it in for me.
But I’ll get to it.
I just need a little kick...
Perhaps I need a book coach! If some of these reasons for not writing a book sound familiar, perhaps you need a book coach too. Excitingly, I am looking for two new private coaching clients to join me on my 6-month Creative Book Coaching Adventure. Find out more here—and if you have questions, contact me here.
Notes in the Margin
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