This week I was going to write about how I ended up rolling together my writing and rewriting, so I’m doing both in the same day and how that intensity helps me not only work faster but also improve the quality of what I’m writing. However, I’m now going to do that next week now (or maybe the week after, I’m thinking an update of what I’ve been up to might be good next Friday), as this week I want to write a shorter post about a side effect all this intensity might bring you. Well, a side effect that’s come to me.
The last three mornings I have been wide awake at 4.30. Not through my daughter crying out – no, she’s been sound asleep – or any other external source. Instead I’ve been up and thinking of the book I’m currently writing; thinking of the final bit of work I have to do at the weekend to get DIANA CHRISTMAS ready for the end of March. My mind churning and churning, ticking off all I have to do, even conjuring up sentences for the day ahead. Some of my plans, some of the sentences, might prove useful, but the fact remains that I didn’t get a good night’s sleep.
To be fair I’ve suffered from periods of insomnia right through my life. But now, with the amount of pressure I’m putting on myself, and how much I’ve geared myself to concentrate on thinking about my writing every spare moment, it does mean that in the early hours – if I do find myself suddenly awake – I have a load to think about and can’t get anywhere close to sleep.
This can’t be healthy.
As I said the other week, we do have to have the conversation at some point about pulling back (though Lord know what I’m going to say, as I’m not very good at that). But if you are going to follow this very intense programme I’m setting out in these Friday blog posts, then remember – in amidst the hard work we all have to do as writers – to try and look after yourselves.
Fancy reading some short stories I probably worried over in the small hours? My collection, SOMETHING WENT WRONG & OTHER STRANGE TALES, is available for free now.