I was all ready to buckle down and get back to work in January. Really I was.
Since I don't have contractual deadlines to meet, I like to take time after a new book releases to concentrate on promo and catch up on life. Since I usually time my releases for early fall, the holidays tend to sneak in gobble up big chunks of my time, too. Before I know it, it's January--time to dive head-first into a new project.
Until this year.
I started off fairly well. I came up with a basic plot outline for my new female bodyguard book Child's Play and completed my character profiles. I even managed to write the first chapter. Yay! That took me through the first two-thirds of the month. Then, for fairly obvious reasons, I hit a creative brick wall. Every day the news got worse, sucking up all my energy and natural optimism. By the 31st, I'd had it. Something had to change. I refused to let malevolent outside forces steal my life any longer if I could help it.
Along with everything happening in the nation and the world, my mood was not improved by the fact that I hadn't been able to exercise since the first week of December because of a nasty case of bursitis in my left hip. I'm not a fanatic--I don't run marathons or anything--but I am used to walking briskly on the treadmill five or six days a week. It boosts my energy and supports the illusion that I'm still young and lively. Since the main treatment for bursitis is rest, I had to abandon my routine when I needed it most.
On February 1st, I decided I'd given my body enough time to heal, and I got back on the treadmill. I'm starting slowly and alternating days with strength bands in an attempt to avoid another flare-up, but it feels good to move again. I'm also getting back into my book.
While I couldn't think about words, I worked with pictures. I like to have an image of the cover in mind while I'm working on a book for inspiration, so I played around and came up with this. What do you think? For continuity and branding, I used the same basic color scheme, fonts, and design elements (legs and gun) as the other two books in the series.
The heroine in this book is a PhD student in Child Psychology who goes undercover as a nanny/bodyguard to the four-year-old niece of a Professor of Egyptian Archaeology after he receives a veiled threat directed toward the child. The story includes stolen artifacts, a bad-tempered monkey named Balthazar, and an enigmatic villain named Fermin LeBlanc. Sounds like fun, doesn't it? Now all I have to do is get busy and write it!
Sounds like a lot of fun. And the cover is great. Good luck. Don't beat yourself up too much. Many of us have had the motivation kicked out of us. But you're right. We still need our creative outlet and our strength to face the future and get a new book on the shelf.
Fun cover, Alison. Actually, I am heartened by the groundswell of emotion over the political chaos; I'd be worried if people shrugged their shoulders and moved on with their daily lives. Remember how we were told to only take on the promo we were comfortable? A friend told me the same about the mess in government. Find ways that fit your comfort zone to push your opinion. I'm interacting with my Senators and Congresspeople on Facebook; I'm donating to three organizations. I marched and I'm in a 'huddle' with other like-minded women. Now that I've decided what to do, I'm back to my writing full force. Sounds to me like your new book will take you to a different, fun world...Go there :-)
The cover is great. Very striking! As for the funk, maybe I should tell you what I told two-year-old Tara when her sister was born. She's not going away, so make the best of it. Being angry all the time doesn't help. Focus on something positive (writing) does.
Brenda, I'm feeling better already--even after only a few days.
Rolynn, I'm glad you found your way to move forward. I'm making progress, too.
Jannine, I was also two when my younger sister was born, and I didn't take it well, either. My mother told me I took my teddy bear, held it to my chest as if I were nursing it, and then threw it in the oven! My sister is now my best friend. LOL. I doubt the current situation will have a similar ending, but I'm already feeling much better now that I can exercise and am back to writing every day.
Sounds like you're making the best of a tough situation and doing what you can to move forward...literally and figuratively. So glad you're getting back into the swing of things. And I love the cover!
Thanks, Leah. I'm definitely swinging again!
I'm thrilled your bursitis is slowly on the mend. We need our routines, our comfort zones. I love the cover. You're very talented in many different areas. It's nice to have more than one creative outlet when you're not in the mood to write. Go you!
Love the cover, Alison. YOu are so talented. I'm sure the story will be great. It's been hard to write lately. Too much else buzzing around my brain. And then travel always takes a lot out of me physically. I HAVE to stay away from FB. While I agree with so many friends' outcries, it just riles me up more. Not good. I need to read more fun books, watch romantic comedies, and play with Toddler Girl--and not in that order. Good luck with that book.
Vonnie, you're so right about needing comfort zones for a safe retreat now and then. I'm a little sore from starting up with the strength bands, but a "good" sore, not an "angry" sore. I'm trying to fill my time with creative outlets. Between my writing, cover design, photography, and gardening I have less time and inclination to stew.
Thanks, Diane. I have the same feelings about FB these days. Angry friends make me angry, too, but I'm reluctant to avoid it completely because I have so many positive connections there, too.
Love the cover, Alison. And you're not alone in having the national front suck the life out of your creativity--seems everyone I speak to has the same feelings, including myself. But onwards and upwards! And hope the bursitis is better.
Thanks, Andi. So far I've managed to exercise for four days without the bursitis flaring up. Yay!
Fabulous cover! You have such a creative streak in the arena too. The book sounds like a real page turner - you will get it done. I think, no matter which 'side' you're on nationally, we are ultimately all in this together and need to learn how to play nice - together. I like the - she's not going away so make the best of it - line. Really all any of us can do.
I also intended to get more productive in January, but I did not. February is half gone and I'm still not accomplishing much, but I am NOT giving up. the cover is fantastic!
Post a Comment