Now I have been back from Singapore and the Philippines for a fortnight things are starting to settle back into a kind of routine. I don’t have a lot of paid writing work at the moment and I confess I haven’t gone hunting for it, either. Writing work doesn’t just fall in your lap, you have to put yourself out there and chase it like any other kind of freelance work. Not that I am complaining as I am relying on the tutoring and lecturing to bring in the cash while I spend some much awaited ‘Me Time’.
I have two major writing projects happening at the moment: my novel ‘Never Be Unsaid’ and my short story anthology, ‘In Grave And Dark Clad Company’. Both have been on the back burner for months, even a year or two and now I am investing precious time to get them happening. The novel will still take a long time to get to manuscript stage as I am about a third of the way through and writing maybe a chapter a week. The anthology is ready for editing, formatting and layout and then publishing but… I think I need to rethink the content.
Rather than just throw in every short story I have written over several years I think I will give this one a theme and keep it only for the twisters, those stories with a macarbe or shocking twist, even just the human nature stories. I’ll keep the humour and the political satire stuff for another collection. I chose the title from a line in ‘Young Goodman Brown’ by Nathanial Hawthorne, a gothic literature story I had to read for a research paper I produced for a client this month. I don’t think my stories could be classified as gothic, even contemporary gothic, but there are gothic elements.
Sometimes the writer needs to allocate time for their own writing, otherwise this freelance writing business is no different to any other job where you swap your time for their bucks. If you don’t exercise your freedom to do your own writing, then you deserve to lose that freedom and be forced back to being a wage slave. Mind you, if you get too self-indulgent you might find the reality of having to pay that mortgage makes wage slaving an attractive proposition and when you are over 50, there aren’t as many propositions out there to be attracted to!