Tuesday, October 23, 2012

Enjoy This Moment

Gus enjoys moments with food or flowers.
When the universe was handing out patience, I must have been in the bathroom. Because I got hardly any of that stuff. But I do have an overabundance of anxiety and nerves and restless energy, which just means they were handing those out with doughnuts, and of course I went back for seconds. But if you are a writer, you will have to learn patience.

As the wise old sage that I am, I always tell my students to stop looking forward to things in their future and learn to enjoy the present. The present is the only thing we have, and if we are always wanting our days to speed by to get to the next thing, those days will oblige us, and before we know it, too many days have passed and few are lying ahead. So as a teacher, I am full of advice.

Which I hardly ever take. Because as a writer, I’m ready to get finished with the first draft, be done with edits, get it on the shelves, write another one. And my husband recently threw my own advice back in my face. He told me to stop looking forward to my book release and enjoy this moment. (Oh wise hubby! Where did you learn that? ) Since I have many more books in me, he reminded me that if I’m always looking forward to the release, I will be always looking forward – and never enjoying where I am.

Some of you are in query hell. Some of you have subs out with editors. Some of you are working on your very first draft of your very first novel and wanting to be done already. I understand your impatience. I feel it every single day.

But I am making a conscious effort to enjoy where I am. I will enjoy these revisions because they are the first I am doing with an editor. I will enjoy this afternoon because it is October and I only get one of these months a year. I will enjoy my birthday later this week, because even though I’m getting older, the alternative is much worse. And I will enjoy family who drive me crazy and students who frustrate me because I am lucky to have both in my life.

So I will enjoy this moment, wherever I may be. Who’s with me?


  1. Yes! Exactly! I think you and I had the same epiphany in different forms today. I just posted something similarly themed on my blog. Great minds, right? ;)

    When I hit moments where anxiety and restlessness gets the best of me, I try to sit down and mentally list everything I have in my life I should be careful not to take for granted. A job that pays the bills, supportive family, a publishing contract, etc. I find that usually helps to refocus my mind.

    1. I just wish I could learn this lesson instead of having to remind myself of it almost daily. :)

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  3. What a wonderful, wonderful post, Sarah. I really am antsy to be done with this draft but I do have to remind myself- this rewritten one is so so much better than the previous 10 drafts (yea I did 10 drafts before realizing I needed to rewrite completely, aaaaaagh). That the voice is stronger, the writing is more my character, the actions are more her. In my original draft I did a lot of "oh that would be cool" as opposed to WWMCD? (what would my character do)
    great advice and one I def need to follow!!!
    -rachelwrites007 on twitter

    1. This is a daily, sometimes hourly reminding I have to do. :) Good luck with your draft. Isn't it great when it finally starts looking the way we wanted it to from the beginning?