Wednesday, 12 September 2012

Prize money and crazy stress

I've had some extremely stressful times in my life (haven't we all?) and as I get older, I get better at managing it. But this summer has been bad, mostly because the stresses are coming from things that I can't resolve. Relationships with family, friends, money worries. But the everyday stress is coming from another direction. The book has been with editors, who are still considering it, for THIRTEEN WEEKS. I know it's just a book, it's just a hobby...but that's the point. I feel like I've been on a three month job interview with the two options being a career in publishing or...it goes back to being a hobby.

I had a doctor's appointment this morning, which I went off to without any concerns, because I'm pretty well, I thought, despite mild diabetes. Wrong. My blood sugar is out of control. This is ridiculous. I've been sensible and careful and taken my medication properly - the nurse asked the big question. Have you been under any extra stress lately? I can't remember the last really good night's sleep I had, because the normal summer stress of extra kids has been complicated by this full on worry about the book. This morning I had a phone call from a  relative who comforted me by saying it took him years to break into writing (for a hobby magazine) and hopefully I'll get my big break too. He also said he couldn't see what all the fuss was about with 50 Shades because at OUR age, we're past all that! Now, he's a lovely bloke but he's a generation older than me and I'm not past anything. So I sit and wait for news (some more) and the stress is literally making me ill. Bugger that.

I'm going to get on with the next book and forget about what is or isn't going on at editors. What I do need (I really need) is a couple of weeks off the summer stress and get used to going back to just 2 kids. And I would like a chance to sit back and work out what kind of a writing career I would like. Yesterday I went to Exeter and spent £250 prize money on me. New clothes, new boots. Now, that felt good, having had a new book do well in a big competition! There's hope yet...

14 comments:

  1. Blowing the £250 in a mad splurge on yourself was a great idea. We've all got to spoil ourselves from time to time. And losing yourself in the next book sounds like another good idea - the rest of it is up to your agent and out of your hands. Good luck!

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    1. Thank you, Catherine! It just seems like a long slog, I'm looking forward to getting on with something completely new!

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  2. Exeter... I could have 'helped' you spend money.
    Nothing alters the fact that you have an editor. You can name-drop in all conversation 'my editor is' 'my editor said' 'last week, my editor...'
    and you're rated by Mslexia.
    Don't be downhearted Reb. You have fans. You have application. You'll get there.

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    1. Thank you, I'm off to a hot bubble bath and to contemplate said boots on the windowsill while I do so. Optimism will be restored shortly!

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  3. I hear you! I'm still waiting too - almost as long as you have been - and it's surprisingly exhausting.

    I've been here before so should be used to it, and in a way I AM more realistic this time round, but I find it hard to motivate myself to keep writing until I've heard something. It's all very odd.

    I do hope you hear something soon, and well done for treating yourself with your prize money :o)

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    1. Hi Karen, it's very wearing, isn't it! I'm really struggling to write a sequel, in case we don't sell book one, but the completely new book might not meet my agent's approval.

      Mice...I'm sure I have at least one family in my study (I can hear them), and we have squirrels nested in the bathroom roof. If my cats didn't spend all day trying to catch the robin who comes to our 'stuck to the window' perspex feeder, maybe they could deter rodents. Instead, they periodically bounce off the glass. There's a danger the robin will rupture himself laughing, but otherwise he's safe.

      I hope you get your good news soon - and in the UK this time, so I can read and review your book!

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  4. Writers write. Agent's agent. Editors... blah blah.

    You take my point.

    Smiles.

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    1. I can't imagine what they are doing - so slowly! Of course, they may not have got around to it. Anyway, I appreciate the support and should get back to doing the bit I can do - writing!

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  5. The most stressful time in my life was when I got divorced with two small kids and a stressful full-time job and a mortgage I could barely afford. The only thing that got me through the stress was exercise - and I wasn't someone that exercised before that. I would wear myself out before bed every night so I could sleep. It helped with the stress, and I lost 30 pounds.

    Maybe I need a little stress now so I can lose the weight from baby number three (who is four).

    Don't give up even if it doesn't go well with the publisher. That may not be the right place for you if they are taking so long.

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    1. Thank you for these kind words, Tonya! I'm going to try and get out the house more, maybe go back to swimming regularly, that always cheers me up. I'm almost willing the publishers to make up their minds - either way - to get it over with!

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  6. when i feel stressed, i head for the woods... always makes me feel better.
    oh, and i think the number 13 is actually a good number, unlike many who think its unlucky! So its been 13 weeks... could be a good sign!!

    Leanne x
    talesofsimpledays.blogspot.com

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    1. Thank you, Leanne! I normally head for the sea, suck up some of that raw energy and blow away the cobwebs, I think that's what I need to do today. I like 13 too...

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  7. Wicked thing stress is! Lack of sleep even worse. Spoiling yourself, now that's the best.

    As I get older I have learned that if I'm not good to me...no one else will be!

    So, continue spoiling yourself and putting yourself first...everything else will fall into place.

    Cheers, Jenny

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  8. Wise words, Jenny! I'm going to try and have a relaxed day and them get on with a much quieter few months. Thank you!

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