Saturday, July 10, 2004
Sunny and warm
I’m recovering. Slowly, but surely. I still have a bad headache and everything feels sore, but I’m much better, and I’m even eating a little bit.
By the way, thank you to those who read the blog and sent e-mails to wish me a speedy recovery. I’m sure that has a lot to do with it!
I was very quiet yesterday, sleeping a great deal. The cats were good – angels with slightly tarnished or tilted halos, but very, very sweet. I read a bit and even watched some television. It made me realize I’m really not missing much by working nights!
I’m almost finished with The Sound of Paper. As I mentioned previously, there’s plenty of good ideas and valid information in it, but it’s all been in her previous work. She’s helped a lot of people, but isn’t time for her to take the next leap? Even essay to essay gets repetitive.
And I strongly disagree with the need for structure. She’s a 12-stepper – I realize that structure is her new god. However, personally, I know how much more I get done in an unstructured day because I have the internal discipline to channel my energy when it’s high for a few hours, then step back and recharge, then go at it again. She’s started to get into the trap of “My way is the best way” instead of “this is what works for me; why not give it a try?”
Before I got sick, I discussed my frustration at the lack of information/articles/support for writers who are beyond the Beginning stage, but not in the Acclaimed Writer stage (in other words, most of us who show up to work every day and keep going). I hesitate to use the word “intermediate” because that’s not quite the shade of meaning I desire. And I don’t want it to sound as though I’m disparaging all the information out there for writers in the early stages of their careers. It’s both important for them and an important market for those who have been through it. But there’s nothing out there for me and for many of my companions on this Writer’s Road to help us where we are now and to make us take the next leap. My friend suggested that because this stage of reshaping one’s career is so individual, maybe there can’t be information out there. Maybe part of it is each person figuring it out, and that’s why writers’ groups come in. I know that my online writing groups are a huge part of what keeps me going, and I miss an in-person group, but on a theatre schedule it’s next to impossible to belong to such a group, because my work schedule is in constant flux.
I still think there’s advice and information and techniques to be learned. One of the reasons I love being a writer is that I’m always learning. I wonder if perhaps because the market is so large for those who want to write (and many will simply read beginning magazines and find, when it’s time to do the work, it’s not for them, and that’s fine, too) that no one is gearing anything to the next stage because they don’t think the market is there.
It’s a conversation I think I will have with Ron Kovach of The Writer and get his perspective. I like his work and trust his opinions.
On a more practical level, I need to map out a plan to earn what I need/want to earn/bill on a weekly basis as a writer, and start pursuing that while I’m still on a show schedule. By the time the billed money starts coming in, it will be okay not to be on a show schedule. But, tired as I am, I need to set more groundwork now. I’m using the exhaustion as an excuse to do the bare minimum of my writing commitments instead of actively seeking out more work. And my “want to” projects have fallen far by the wayside. I need to pull them out of their ditches, brush them off and get back to work.
Contacted one of the colleges as requested to set the schedule for spring teaching.
I picked some dates for New Orleans, and I have the regular Tuesday at WICKED, so I want to work around that. I found a decent flight to New Orleans in January – I’ll probably book it soon. And I’m watching a few hotels. When I see the price I want, I’ll jump on it.
Wishing is great, but means little without action to back it up.
Only 9 AM, but I’ve got to finish off some morning chores, eat some breakfast (and hope it stays down) and head for the train. Two shows and a tarot client in between.