And then, I picked the worst possible time to change jobs. Right in the middle of National Novel Writing Month, I packed up my belongings into a cardboard box, and made the move to another software company, where I’d have the opportunity to stretch my legs, so to speak, and expand upon my existing skills as a quality assurance analyst, to climb the corporate ladder.
Now don’t get me wrong… this was absolutely the right move career-wise, and after just the first 5 days, I’ve already been happier with my job than I’ve been in the last 5 years.
But the excitement and anticipation of the new job had completely overshadowed my other work. I didn’t even begin to think about the different ways my novel would suffer when I took on this new position. The added drive time to the swanky new office downtown has more than tripled my daily commute, meaning more time on the road, and less time spent with my family. And more importantly, my characters. Spending eight hours a day training or reading over required documentation has eaten into the spare time I had between projects at my old job, where I could easily kill 30 to 45 minutes working on my next chapter.
Part of me feels as though I have failed. After so much progress, my novel screeched to a halt last week. And I’d been so busy, that I hadn’t even noticed. Yesterday, I pulled out the NaNoWriMo calendar I’d been using to keep up with my daily word counts, and stared at a blank row, suddenly realizing that I hadn’t written a single thing in the five days since I started the new job.
On the plus side however, the 2 weeks of solid writing showed me a thing or two… Going back to that whole “writers write” thing, I realized just how true it was. Sitting down for an hour or three each day and just banging out the words as fast as they came to me had accomplished quite a bit already. I’d written more in 2 weeks than I had in probably a year. So, there’s that.
Also, the exercise made me realize that, even with the worst case of writer’s block, just pecking out a handful of words each day was something. I mean, almost anything is better than a blank page, right? And I was making progress! Maybe not as much as I’d hoped for, but considering it has been a good couple of years since I’ve been really motivated and inspired, I think I’ve done quite well.
Just because I haven’t written in over a week doesn’t mean I’m done or I’m giving up on NaNoWriMo, it just means my month will last a bit longer. I’ve nearly adjusted to my new work schedule now, and I’ve completed the bulk of my training… So my time should be a bit more readily available.
So even though I may not finish my 50,000 word count this month, I’m still bound and determined to reach that goal. My new, self-imposed deadline is January 1st, which should in theory, be totally doable, even if I can only cram in writing sessions 2 or 3 times a week. Follow my progress on Facebook, here and like my page for more updates and randomness.
Also, an update from one of my previous posts… My poor wife gave in and agreed to accompany me to the premiere of Star Wars Episode VII: The Force Awakens. And as glad as I was to finally have guilt-tripped her into going, she was too little too late. A few former co-workers from my previous job and I will be getting together to see the movie, so I’ll likely be flooding this and my Facebook page with updates and a spoiler-free review.
Now, as I slowly slip into a turkey-coma, and my wife and I plan out our family’s annual Black Friday Christmas decorating extravaganza, I’d like to wish you all a safe and happy Thanksgiving!