Monday, September 26, 2011

The Dreaded Maintenance Plan - Virna DePaul

When I was in college, I had career dreams.  Before I owned a home, I fantasized about where I’d live.  Before I sold, I worked hard at becoming published. 

But once you attain a dream, then what? 

The maintenance begins.  What I’m learning is that maintaining what we’ve achieved is often the most difficult task we face.

Maintenance is dealing with the reality of the career you’ve chosen, including office politics, a long commute, disillusionment, and boredom.  It’s having to mow the lawn, wash the dishes, do the laundry and constantly dust the home you’ve built.  And it’s having to constantly face all the things that you haven’t done but could be doing to further your publishing career—finish those revisions, self-publish a book, update your website, send swag to the conference you can’t attend, write that next contracted book, meet new readers online, etc.

There’s always something more I can do to promote myself as an author.  Sometimes I find myself drowning in a sea of possibilities rather than doing the one thing I used to enjoy most—writing for the sheer pleasure of discovering new characters and worlds.

Probably everyone’s heard the adage that “Anything worth keeping is worth fighting for.”  A corollary sentiment is that “Anything worth achieving is worth maintaining.”  Of course it is.  Marriage and children.  A slender, healthy figure.  A writing career.  They’re all good and they’re all well-worth fighting for. 

But it’s still hard work.  It’s easier said than done.  And it’s easy to beat ourselves up for not perfecting our maintenance plans.  Occasionally, I think, we need to step back and let ourselves dream again, so that the possibilities aren’t just about tasks to be done but delights to be discovered.  That’s why, in honor of my latest book, Chosen By Fate (Para-Ops Novel #2), being released, I’m adopting a new goal.  Hawaii, anyone?


marybelle said...

Maintenance can be weary work, but the end results can be well worth it.


Great Post !!!

Lynnette Labelle said...

Bring me with you. :)

Lynnette Labelle


Oh! So very true! If only I could spend my days happily writing, sipping Earl Grey! Oy, I need B12! Great post Virna! As always!

Virna DePaul said...

Marybelle - So true! It's what I keep reminding myself! :)

Regina - Thanks so much!

Lynnette - Wouldn't that be cool! Writing retreat!! :)

Linda - I think I was much cuter before I sold. I'm looking a little "worn" right now. LOL. Thanks for stopping by! :D

Melanie Milburne said...

Virna, I read your post and thought that's exactly how I feel! Writing isn't just about the writing, unfortunately. There is always so much else do to. Maintaining the dream is very hard work at times, but the love of writing usually wins over.
Great cover, by the way!

Sonali said...

Awesome post. I agree maintaining a dream is so tough. I am experiencing that for myself right now and i'm realizing that it is alot of hard work.