Whenever my main symptoms are over I think “I’m all right now, and I need to get back to work.”
My problem this week was not being able to do a full penguin at a time.
All right, that might sound a little funny if you haven’t been following this series of posts, so let me explain: I’ve been working through the Pomodoro technique, using this little penguin timer. (I found him, by the way. I’d somehow wedged him on a bookcase. He looked rather lost.)
The normal stretch is twenty five minutes of work, then five minutes off, with a twenty minute break every four sets. I take longer on the long break, because I use it to walk three miles, and it takes me about an hour. I also make it flexible, because I walk whenever I can convince one of my sons to walk with me.
This week I had to work only about a twelve minute set before I took a break. I simply didn’t have enough strength to pull from.
That said, and before it sounds like the week was a total failure, I did get quite a bit done. Mostly what I got done was realizing what had gone wrong with Through Fire – in case you wonder why I haven’t reported its completion.
One of my fans who is also a writer, talking about what it felt like to write a novel and how you’re not in full control of it, but often the things that escape your control end up objectively better than you could have consciously made them, called the process “Being G-d’s sock puppet.”
I’m not going to claim that I write by divine command, or that my works are divinely inspired, but when writing is working properly, almost every writer I know refers to it as channeling something bigger than himself, and writing the novel as it needs to be written. As it “is” already, somewhere.