I start a new job tomorrow - my first full-time office job since late last year. In all honesty, it's been a long and difficult time personally and writing-wise, obviously not helped by a global pandemic. It turns out high levels of uncertainty in everything from paying the rent to a lack of routine to 'I wonder how many people will die today' isn't great when it comes to writing anything of much worth. I have been writing over this year (several short pieces, the final version of a difficult book and the first draft of a new one) mainly because I don't know what else to do with my time but also because it's the only thing I can do.
As with pretty much everyone else in the world, it's not been an easy time lately. I won't bullshit about that. A couple of months ago, I had plans to write a new book connected to two I'd had published over the last couple of years. Around the same time, the first two went out of print. I wrote the third, anyway, and still hope to land a new home for the preceding books, but there are no guarantees on that. Putting the global situation to one side for the moment, it's been hellishly hard to write without the same routine I've had for best part of twenty years. I have managed it, but juggling my time and not knowing from one week to the next when I'd have that free time was messy and uncomfortable. Turns out I need some level of routine to work at my best. With the new job starting tomorrow, I'm not quite there yet as I'll need to get used to it and work from home until the plague burns itself out. It's a good start, though.
Connected to that fresh start, I'm working on plans for my writing going forward. Frankly, I've had enough of my cycle of writing a book, spending months and years trying to get the big money for it before admitting that isn't going to happen, then writing another one. I'm limiting the number of my submissions and refreshing my work by changing angles and themes slightly. I've said before that horror is a massive area with plenty of room to play with, so I'll be looking more at grounded horror rather than outright supernatural. To that end, I've got a crime/horror out on submission at the moment along with a SF horror. Once I finish a fresh draft of my current book and hopefully find a home for the three in the series, I'm looking at a thriller/horror. With what should be more routine and my personal life settling down, I'm hopeful I can put the pieces of everything else together.
And feel like me, again.