Moving is bad for writing. This much is certain.
A more pernicious discovery, though, is my recent determination that having a home can be bad for writing, too!
Back in my Usenet days, I participated in a group that focused on the writing of fantasy and science fiction. There was a helpful term used a lot then: “Cat vacuuming”, which referred to the habit of a lot of writers to resort to the most obscure of household chores as a way of procrastinating. Chores never stop, they never go away, and there is always something that “needs doing” around the house. It’s a lot easier to sit down at the desk and then suddenly remember those two light fixtures that have needed new lamps for a month — despite the fact that no one turns them on, ever — and jump up from the desk to act accordingly. I’m discovering that the “butt in chair” state of being, so necessary for writing, was a lot easier to attain in the apartment.
Which just means I need to apply discipline in order to regain momentum, because once I have momentum, then I’m like a friggin’ train, folks. As River Tam might say, “No power in the ‘Verse can stop me!”
In practical terms: after a lot of fits and starts, and shortened writing sessions that didn’t produce much by way of copy, I’m on something of a productive streak again with The Adventures of Lighthouse Boy (not the actual title). That’s my writing tracker spreadsheet up top — note all the blank spaces, but also note how long this book is getting. And it’s only, by my estimation (as I’m not working from any kind of plot outline), I’m only now nearing the book’s halfway point. I knew going in that this book was going to be a doorstop, and sure enough, it is. I’m fine with that, as I wanted to write a lllooonnnggg book, in the Alexandre Dumas vein, with long-held family secrets, and royalty in hiding, and hidden treasure, and daring escapes, and wild coincidences, and femme fatales, and fateful meetings in bright taverns, and loves lost and found, and…a lighthouse above the pounding surf at the bottom of the windswept cliffs. I don’t know what I’ll do with this one once it’s done, but I have some ideas. We’ll see.
In other writing news, as of July 1, I am ramping hard into production on the November release of Princesses In SPACE!!! (not the actual title). I’m making notes for final edits — I need to revise some things, fix a few issues, and insert some material here and there to retrofit that book to better lead into its sequel. I’ve had discussions with an artist friend about cover art, and I’m considering making a book trailer to release online. I’ll discuss more of this work as I go, hopefully as a way of generating some small amount of buzz for this thing. I’m aware that a lot of this groundwork will take a while to bear fruit, as it will probably be the second and third books in the series that start to pile on the momentum. But it has to start somewhere, and I am increasingly thrilled with the prospect of this book’s release into “the wild”.
So that’s where we stand right now. Lots of work to do! Not much time to do it! It’s like that song, the one from Smokey and the Bandit. You know the one. And if you don’t, look it up. Onward and upward! Zap! Pow!!