at loose ends

So I’ve got my book with beta readers. What now?


No, really, what now? For the first time in four(!) years I’ve not had the Work In Progress breathing down my neck (I didn’t take much time away between the first and second drafts) and it’s deeply strange. Not mourning or melancholy, but a kind of like an engine running to go nowhere. I need to feed my hungry mind.

The standard writers’ response is: start the next book! Which is smart career-wise and certainly possible as my plot idea folder is overflowing. But I need a break from long-form writing. Blogging and book reviews will continue cranking out as scheduled. Hell, maybe I’ll do some discovery writing or toss out a fanfic just for giggles.

I promised myself a sewing project so I’m trying to do that, but find myself wheel-spinning because I have too many options. Good thing I need new measurements because I can put off making a decision.

One thing I am doing is sticking to my resolution to learn by doing and be useful while I’m doing so. To these ends I’m critiquing and beta reading as I’m asked and able. I’ve given Scribophile a lot of attention and need to get back to my local writer’s group.

What about you? Ever feel like an engine raring to go without a map?

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Allison Thurman

Allison Thurman has always made stuff: out of fabric, metal, beads, even exaggerated fencing moves. Of late she makes stories out of weird history, with fragments of pop culture, unsolved mysteries, and science fiction mixed in for texture. She lives in a galaxy far, far away (well, the DC metro area) with too many books and swords.

One thought on “at loose ends”

  1. Sometimes. I always have lots of things I want to do but one in a while I want to do !something! and none of them is quite the right shape for my want at that moment.

    Threatening myself with “If you can’t find anything else to do there’s always vacuuming.” occasionally works but hearing it from me isn’t anywhere near as effective as hearing it from my parents. ;p

    If you’re considering some short writing you might want to keep an eye on Alex Shvartsman’s website (UFO Press) and/or his Twitter … he publishes anthologies (very good ones … the collection of coffee-themed stories is especially wonderful) fairly regularly and he includes a lot of new writers.

    (just checked: next one on the schedule is “Unidentified Funny Objects 7”, submissions open April 1)

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