Working on the Book; Stuff’s Gonna Get a Little Quiet Around Here

Posted on
Aug 6, 2014
Posted in: Site News

I’ve realized something: I can only write for so many hours a week.

My notes for the book (center) and my notes from Cambodia (upper right).


This has been a tough thing to come to terms with. I figured there are 40 hours in a standard work week, so I can write for 40 hours, right? This isn’t the case. My brain, it seems, only allows for a certain number of productive writing hours every day. After that, I stare numbly at my computer, drooling, while my brain forces me to look at shoes on Zappos that I will never, ever buy.

Or maybe I’ll buy them, but I’ll return them. Really, I will.

For the past year, I’ve been trying to maintain the blog while working on the Great American Novel Pretty Good International Memoir. This has meant two things:

  1. I’ve written fewer blog posts than I would like this year.
  2. Writing the book is taking way longer that I thought.

It’s very much a zero-sum game. The more I blog, the less I get done on the book. In the past few weeks, I’ve had people email me, asking about my progress. A couple have even request advanced copies.

“I don’t care if it’s a rough draft,” some lovely soul said. They just wanted to read it.

I wish I could reach into the computer and hug them for the undeserved love they’ve given me. Then I would pat them repeatedly on the head while saying, “Dearest, do you know who else would like an advance copy of the book? ME. AND ALSO MY PUBLISHER.”

But there is NO ADVANCED COPY. THERE ISN’T EVEN A ROUGH DRAFT. There are just a dozen or so really messy chapters that don’t flow together properly and most of them will probably end up on the cutting room floor.

So I’ve come to a tough decision.

I’m scaling back blogging in order to dedicate more time to my book.

I figure that I’m not spending the amount of time I’d like to on the blog, anyway. That sacrifice has already been made, mostly. I’ve stopped posting weekly round-ups (I loved compiling those links, but it’s fallen to the wayside over the last month or so – they just take too much time to pull together). Some weeks I barely get more than three posts up.

On those weeks, though, I’ve found that I do get more book-writing done. So here’s the plan for the foreseeable future: I will be posting on the blog two or three times a week. It might be a bit sporadic. I hope that’s okay. (And don’t forget: there are five years of archives to look through, if you are so inclined.)

The rest of the time, I will spend working on this damn mess of a book I’m writing. Wish me luck. And cookies. And more luck.

(I just published this and realized that the title is grammatically problematic, at best. Le sigh. This proves my point, you guys. Also, if you want more updates on my travels and life in general, you can keep up with me on Twitter or Instagram.)



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