Monday, May 6, 2013

I Need to Remember This

In my darkest hours.

Not that I really have so many darkest hours. But then dark is relative, isn't it?

Anyway, I need to remind myself of this moment for the inevitable Woe Iz Moe -- wait, Moi -- moments.

It is 7:15 on a Monday morning.

It is May. It is pouring rain. And the big question today is will I give in to the SO, who wants to go see Iron Man 3, or will I work on the sequel to Ill Met By Moonlight which is due...whenever I finish it.

And the reason I need to remember and focus on this is, because like all people (artists, but especially writers) I imagine that there is really a right answer to this, that someone is keeping score and maybe knocking me down a point or two...

No, that's not the real answer. The real answer is I worked hard to get to this point, this point of doing what I love for a living, and having got here there is a nervous feeling of...why should I get to do what I want for a living? I am only too conscious of the fact that most people don't get to do what they want for a living. (And how messed up in life is that?) And if they do get to do what they want, they can't actually earn a living.

None of which changes the fact that I am drinking Irish coffee while the rain pours down and the big question of the day is do I need to focus on the work I love or do I get to -- need to -- take a day off?

Remember this, Josh. Remember this moment. It is life. The very life of life.



28 comments:

  1. ALWAYS take time to smell the roses, Josh, or, in this case, take time to watch the rain fall.

    Go see IronMan 3 (though, I for one have no idea why ANYONE would like to see it).

    Remember - life comes first.

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    1. I did opt for the movie and a day with the SO -- and it was great. It was the right choice. :-)

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  2. I think the question for me would be, do I need to focus on the work I love or do I focus on the love in my life. SO's movie choice aside, lol, I know if I made my SO smile a little then I'll probably be happier working later. Life bounces back on us. Sometimes in good ways and sometimes not so good. I say, go for the good bounce back and enjoy. :)

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    1. Yes, that is the real question, isn't it. It's way too easy to become so absorbed in the interior life that there's no room or time for other people.

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  3. Oh this chimes with me! I have spent much time wrangling this question and yes, i agree that it is 'especially writers'. Especially romance writers. You can't write a romance novel in which the protagonists of your imagination do Big Things for Love without at least considering the possibility that you may have snapped at your partner or wished they'd shut the hell up for 5 mins or stop asking you to go and see Iron Man 3 while writing the most romantic scenes in the story.

    Irony, much?

    I worry sometimes, that I spend so much of my life living in my imagination as the business of life goes on around me. I have the dubious fortune of having a real life job to keep me in the real world but since I am a lawyer, it doesn't feel dissimilar. I'm an agent, an adviser. Always the bridesmaid. Second hand Rose. Whatever. And as I write this, you know what I'm thinking?

    There's a story in that.

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    1. It is a blessing. I think it keeps your work grounded in reality. I mean, that is the problem with so many first (second, third, fourth, fifth) novels. If you're still living with your parents and you don't have a relationship or a job -- or maybe you do have a job but it requires no mental or physical investment -- well, no wonder that writer has nothing real or insightful to say.

      But I digress!

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  4. A wonderful moment to contemplate. I look at the beautiful day at times, and wonder why I'm inside typing. But not really. I know why. :)

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    1. It's a struggle to find that balance between the interior and exterior life, isn't it? Especially because I think the writer instinct is usually toward the interior (cloistered) life.

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  5. Well, I would say go with your SO and see "Iron Man". The work you love will be waiting when you get back and you'll have spent time with the one you love. My SO is suffering from dementia. Sometimes he doesn't even know who I am. Other times he says he loves me. I work at a job that keeps the roof over out heads because I love him. So I guess you could say I love my job.

    So, watch the rain, love your job and love your SO. You can do it all and not feel guilt. Go for the good bounce as Karan says. That what I try to do each day.

    Terri

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    1. Terri, thank you for that painful perspective.

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  6. 1. Go see the movie (I hear it's good).

    2. That blog entry is like a poem -- a beautiful concentrated, distilled thought.

    3. Got some advice from a writer recently that works really, really well for me. So I'm passing it along. Watch out, though, it's so profound you might cry -- or laugh, it's that good.

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=NHsSd3vk5jk

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    1. That was excellent advice -- and I thank you (and Neil) for it.

      The movie was utterly entertaining, by the way.

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    2. Glad you enjoyed it! I did too (saw it last night) -- it was very good.

      I feel like I want to put that clip of Neil Gaiman in a digital frame and press the PLAY button any time I'm feeling down. It's like digital prozac! Plus he has a great voice.

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  7. Have the day off. The very fact that you're worrying about it means you need a day off!

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    1. You could be right about that.

      And there is truth to the idea of rewards for the wins. Otherwise it's too easy to get caught up in the winning itself. And I remember this from back in day when I was a Evil Corporate Overlord. It was hard to stop, hard to give anyone a moment to celebrate because it became all about the winning and the war. :-D

      And now of course it's all moot and even funny to think it mattered.

      And that's kind of life. In a nutshell.

      Or a nuthouse.

      ;-D

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  8. I hope you took the day off, or at least part of it, and went to see that movie with your SO. It's important to do things like that. (And it's the awesome Robert Downey Jr.!!!)
    As to why you get to love what you do and to do what you love, i say - why not? it's such a fortunate thing to be able to do that, but really most you can do is appreciate it, and the fact that you can take time off on a Monday morning and go watch a movie with your SO.
    Also, what you do makes so many people happy, that's karma points right there :-) think about that happiness that you bring to your readers, how your writing is a beacon of light if they have to go to a job that they don't like, or if they're just in need of reading something that will make them feel better for whatever reason. So just take a day off once in a while, it can only make everything better. :-)

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    1. I did. I saw the movie -- and I enjoyed it so much that I'm going to take a couple of youthful strapped-for-cash kinfolk to see it too. And maybe throw in lunch. :-) I enjoyed myself very much.

      You guys -- as always -- reminded me of something important.

      I don't want to ever stop being grateful for the chance to do what I love for a living. On the other hand, I don't want to waste the pleasure of that opportunity because I'm so nervous and guilty that I don't appreciate what I've got. Because being oblivious is still oblivious, regardless of what motivates it.

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    2. Very happy to hear that you had fun :-)

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  9. I'm smiling so widely here — and I can't seem to stop it. I don't know, but you make me so very proud of you, Josh. As goofy as it sounds.

    Yes, you definitely need to remember that influential Monday morning moment... and what came out of it. And how extremely, incredibly lucky you are.

    And please, give my best to the SO. He's lucky, too. :-)

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    1. :-D

      I try to remind him of that on a regular basis!

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  10. Okay. Back to work!

    I just order Adrian English books 3-5. That should keep me occupied for a couple of weeks. So you have a little time before I start b*tchin' about the next available tome.

    I finished the first draft of the manuscript I was working last Monday. Ah, just like birthing a baby. The client seems well pleased so far and that's good.

    In the meantime, I'm starting another.

    My little works are non-fiction, so I LIVE for good fiction.

    Keep writing, Josh, but keep living too.

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    1. Ha! I have spent the day on writing busyness versus writing, but it's all gotta be done and tomorrow I'll be deep in the work once more.

      Well, deep in SOMETHING. ;-D

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  11. Glad you opted for the movie, Josh! A bit of trivia...last year, they filmed part of the movie at the software company that I work for in North Carolina. One of our buildings served as a "stand-in" for Stark Industries HQ and our employees were extras in some of the scenes with Gynneth, et al. :-)

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    1. Really?

      That movie was so fun. I really enjoyed it.

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  12. I really liked this, because I have lived it. Sat alone, contemplating seemingly mundane life decisions but in that moment, they seem so infinitely important.

    Taking a day off, even just mentally does wonders for ones soul.

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  13. It made a big difference in my perspective. Maybe it's that illusion of control! ;-)

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