I’ve always been one to get bored easily. But I can quickly find something interesting to do. It’s imperative, to my sense of well-being, that my days are filled with variety. I had that variety while I was raising my three daughters. I enjoyed practically every aspect of homemaking—caring for my girls, preparing healthy meals, decorating the house, gardening, sewing (I did a lot of sewing) and so forth. When I took a job outside the home (once the girls were grown), I made sure that my life included elements that involved family, home, learning, stretching, growing, creativity, people, laughter, activity and animals.
As many of you know, I’ve been writing for publication for 35 years. Even my choice of careers allowed me variety, for I started out writing articles for magazines. I wrote on family issues, relationships, animals, self-improvement and many, many other topics. My published (and yet to be published) books are on an eclectic array of topics requiring diverse research tactics. Of course, the process of promoting books also affords the opportunity for variety. An author might find herself writing articles to promote her book one day, speaking to a group the next and conducting an online interview the following day. She will write press releases, research distributors and the library market and attend book festivals, for example. There’s no lack of variety when it comes to book promotion.
Now that I work with other people on their projects through teaching, conducting workshops, editing, consulting and so forth, I find that my days are still all about variety. Just this month, for example, I’ve been editing a middle school children’s book. I helped a client design her book cover, scrutinized some author changes in a book that’s ready to go to press, edited a few chapters for a long-time client, edited another client’s book proposal, taught a book proposal workshop, practiced a speech for the Wizard of Words Writers’ Conference coming up in Phoenix in October, negotiated for books to give away with SPAWN memberships, wrote the 13-page September edition of the SPAWN Market Update, wrote an article for SPAWNews, reviewed a book for SPAWNews, posted my daily blog almost daily, shipped books almost daily and did the necessary bookwork, wrote and submitted a handful of articles on writing/publishing, fought to get Borders Books to pay on an outstanding invoice, taught the last two classes in my online article-writing series, agreed to two speaking engagements and I’ve responded to a dozen or so questions. And this was a fairly slow month.
People ask me how I manage, at my age, to put in such full days. I think it has something to do with the fact that I thrive on variety. Plus, outside of my work, I strive to eat 5 to 10 fruits and vegetables per day (that takes a bit of creativity in itself), I walk 2 to 3 miles every day, I garden, I’m caretaker to two formerly feral cats and I maintain a home, a family (I’m part of 4 generations of women) and a social life (I saw Mama Mia a few weeks ago, visited the zoo with a friend and participated in planning a major class reunion this month and I’ll tour a dahlia garden this weekend.)
Do you arrange for variety in your days? Or are you stagnating? Do you write regularly and enjoy the process? Maybe you’re promoting a book. Vary your promotional activities and see how much more fun it can be. And don’t forget to take care of yourself.
This is the last day of my discount offer. Sign up today and get $20 off of the 8-week online book proposal course. Sign up TODAY at http://www.matilijapress.com/course_bookproposal.htm The online classes begin September 15, 2008.
Contact me at PLFry620@yahoo.com with your questions.