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Tansy Rayner Roberts

On Not Writing a Book – What Else is There?

December 3rd, 2012 at 9:29

Sometimes blogging about not writing feels like the most subversive thing I can possibly do. I had my annual meltdown last week as I faced what I was and wasn’t going to be able to achieve this year, and my brain exploded messily all over the house. Only JUST metaphorically, I might add.

Now I am breathing calmly, having accepted that, you know, that novel I was working on is not going to be finished by the end of the school holidays, so I don’t have to kill myself in order to get it “done” before my next deadline window (for the second Livia Day novel) takes over.

Not when I have proofs to correct and much-closer-to-finished projects to edit, and submissions to make. And a house to clean up for Christmas and a tree to decorate and an insane number of end of year assemblies/concerts to attend.

Breathe, Tansy, breathe!

I haven’t finished anything substantial this year, nor have I made any substantial sales, but I have come to terms with that. It’s been a crazy year, and considering I wrote the Nancy novel straight after my mega trilogy (and have written two full length novels since my three-year-old was born, let’s put things in perspective here) I was due for a little taking-things-slower time.

Looking back on the year, while my mind and work have been scattered to the sixteen winds, I’ve managed to do a lot that I am proud of. I have been stretching myself as a writer, taking on challenges that I might not even have considered a few years ago. I’ve sold several non fiction pieces to paying markets, had my first reprint appear in a US book, and reached a personal milestone by being PAID for writing about Doctor Who. First Hugo nomination, plus the Peter Mac Convenor’s Award, thanks to Galactic Suburbia. (I only just realised that our title has the word ‘gal’ in it, who knew?)

Next year is Jem’s last full year before kindergarten starts (then one more year before she starts full time school) and I keep saying that I don’t want to wish that time away, though I do find myself thinking longingly about a future life where my days are almost entirely my own. Starting to think that those days are not going to be only for housework and writing fiction, though. I want to bring some regular money in for my family and writing sadly is not all that reliable an income. Yes, I am just accepting this now. Anyone would think I was a grown up!

Still, now is not the time for stress and worry. I made two big brave submissions this last week which I am very proud of. Next year sees the launch of Livia Day and the long-awaited (by me) release of A Trifle Dead. And I have plans, so many exciting plans and projects and new challenging things to throw at myself next year, culminating in our family trip to Brighton for World Fantasy Convention.

2013 is going to be awesome. See you all there!

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One Response to “On Not Writing a Book – What Else is There?”

  1. Sean the Blogonaut Says:

    That sounds like a lot of work to me, a lot achieved. It also sounds like you are putting some effort in that will pay out later – both economically and emotionally. I eagerly await your new projects :)

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