A Writer Turning 50: Going with the Flow

comfort zoneHard to believe that in a little over 50 days, I will be fifty years old.  In my mind, I don’t feel anywhere near fifty.  In fact, there are days I barely feel like an adult.  Sadly, the mirror tells another story.  My mind might be 30, but my face and body are definitely in their second act. BUT, I am in good health, in pretty decent shape and mentally sharp. All in all, I feel pretty darn good about turning the page.

When I started this year, I was determined to focus on two things: more experiences and better productivity.  The experiences are a little slow in coming, but I have a great to-do list lined up for the summer.  Meanwhile, I’ve come to some realizations about productivity.

.  I spent a great deal of time studying how other, more successful writers worked.  What I learned was that these women are born with both drive and confidence.  They are capable of tremendous output.  And so I created a great writing schedule that I thought would allow me to follow in their footsteps.

One problem: I’m not these women.  I am Barbara Wallace.  Somewhere along the line, I confused developing my peak productivity with mimicking others.  I read how Maisey Yates, Donna Alward, et al were able to increase their output, and I created a plan similar to theirs.  In doing so I failed to remember a few things:

1. Writing doesn’t always go as planned. Ideas (like the super seekrit project) fall apart.

2. Maisey, Donna, Soraya Lane, etc. created schedules that worked for them.  That doesn’t mean it’ll work for me.

I learned something else too.  One of the reasons I started the super seekrit project was because I felt the pressure to expand my career base.  Every writer I know is focused on  putting multiple eggs in baskets, i.e. not relying on one publisher to build a career. They, of course, are correct.  A smart writer does not complacently sit back and wait for success.  She creates her own.

But you can’t force a step if you’re not ready.  Do I want to break out of category writing?  Absolutely.  I look forward to the day I write my first single title.  However, as the failed super seekrit project reminded me, breaking out isn’t going to happen overnight.

Impatience has long been one of my failings.  As I turn fifty, I want to change that.  I want to learn how to go with the flow more.  Not only in terms of my career, but in my life and in simply putting words on the page.  Life is going to unfold the way it’s going to unfold.  At its own pace.

Wow – aren’t I becoming zen.  Maybe I am old after all.

Till next week, happy writing! (and reading!)

PS: I would be remiss if I didn’t give a huge thank you to all the readers who bought BILLIONAIRE’S MATCHMAKER and SWEPT AWAY BY THE TYCOON this month.  Both are climbing the sales charts.  I couldn’t do this without you all.

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