Tuesday, August 28, 2012

My Muse has declared a work stoppage

I am working on story  #4 right now, racing against deadlines and looming production schedules to get it done before my attention is required elsewhere. Which would be fine, lovely even, except that my muse has shoved a pillow over her imaginary head and told me in no uncertain terms to bugger off, she’s tired.

Now, normally I wouldn’t have a problem taking a day or two off to indulge her whimsical sensibilities, but as I mentioned above, I have deadlines coming and this novel is being written while I wait to announce that  [redacted novel name] has been [redacted] by [redacted publisher name] because I am still waiting for the [redacted] to arrive so I can sign it.

This is more of a novella than a novel, and I am not expecting it to top out at more than 35,000 words. A bite sized story as it were, something that I should be able to get finished in two weeks if the stars align and my life avoids any excessive weirdness. (which I am happy to say it has, for the most part, something for which I am quite grateful.) 

But now I am down to two days left in my original deadline, with less than 10k words left to go before I can call it completed, and my muse has gone on an illegal strike. I wasn’t aware imaginary inspirational sprites were unionized, but it would appear that is the case. She’s making accusations of unpaid overtime, hostile work conditions (I’ve stopped drinking diet coke, she doesn’t seem to appreciate the health reasons behind this decision.) and demanding more time off. There was originally a demand for benefits, but since she’s a non corporeal entity, I’ve pointed out she doesn’t actually need medical or dental coverage and that issue seems to have gone by the wayside.

In the meantime I am meeting resistance to my attempts to hit my deadline, and I know she’s the reason why.  My brain is moving slower than it should be and I am finding myself easily distracted. Plots, characters and ideas are not flowing well, and I seem to have lost access to a large part of my vocabulary. She’s keen to natter on at length about future projects, including the sequel to the book I’m currently trying to write, but she seems loath to let me get on with the job of finishing it. Between my brain’s new inability to focus for long and her continuous need to discuss ideas for future books, I fear I may miss my deadline, and my muse simply doesn’t seem to care.

For now, I intend to give in to her demands for down time, and will see if an evening out along with a servings of diet coke and cheese toast cannot persuade her to come back on board and make sure we get this story told. It’s a good story, and I know we’ll both be pleased with it when it’s done. But right now 10,000 words is looking a long, long way off. Wish me luck.