Yesterday, I posted about a new short fiction anthology, partly because I wanted you to know about it but also partly because I was starting to feel like I was overwhelmed and floundering. Three of the pieces I wanted to include seemed like they were going to take a lot more work than I’d initially thought, and I was letting that start to sidetrack the entire project.
Just before I wrote yesterday’s post, I had decided it wasn’t worth the stress to try and corral those three stories into the current collection. I’d edited one, but gotten bogged down in some of the bigger changes that were necessary, and to be honest it was starting to feel like the thread of the story was getting away from me. Within five minutes of writing yesterday’s blog, though, I suddenly felt like I had not only the energy I’d need to do those stories justice, but the knowledge of how to go about making them publication-ready.
Sometimes we put too much pressure on ourselves. I remember when I was working on my short story for HOT MESS, I wrote a throw-away short story before I got around to the two pieces that ended up in the anthology. Just writing something – anything – took the pressure to be perfect off me, and swept my mental desk clean enough to get some quality work done. Apparently, deciding that I didn’t need to include the three short stories I discounted yesterday morning was enough to give my brain the space it needed to start solving problems.
So who knows – SHORT FRICTIONS may include a few more pieces, after all. You’ll just have to wait till it’s published to find out.
In the meantime, check out your own to-do list. What on it can wait? What have you pressured yourself to take care of, when maybe you didn’t need to? Try crossing something off the list, and see how you feel. You might find that it energizes you enough to carry you through the rest of your tasks – and who knows, that x’d-off item might even find its way back onto the roster.