698, 699, and … 700.
Someday I’m going to release two books in one day. One will be Jeep Thompson and The Lost Prince of Venus, the novel I have been nibbling at since before the lockdowns of 2020, and the other will be the non-fiction How to Beat Inertia in 30 Years, the story of my lifetime battle with procrastination.
In 1987, I wrote down a plan to become a full-time writer by Jan. 1, 1990. I’m 32 years past that target. The book with the ironic name will be my journal of the closing years of the battle, as I went from “This is the novel I’m going to write” to “Look, I made this, finally.” Or maybe I’ll wait until the Jeep trilogy is completed, just to be sure the battle is won.
Oh, you could say I’ve been a full-time writer since 1975, because I have almost always held a job that involved writing. That’s a rationalization. You know what I mean: A “full-time writer” who chooses his topics and projects without an employer telling him what needs to be written.
In any case, the daily block will be part of the Inertia book. A couple of years ago, I finally tired of seeing my train of thought broken up by WordPress ads and put warrenbluhm.com on its own site. In late July 2020 I thought to myself, “Self, how do I differentiate this site from my older blogs?”
It occurred to me that I had never sustained a daily blogging habit, so I resolved to do a three-month trial and blog every day from Aug. 1 through Oct. 31. This is Day 700 of that 92-day challenge.
One thing I did differently was not to announce my resolve. My years as a writer/author are littered with announcements and promises that fizzled out. (One of those was “Jeep Thompson: Coming in 2021.”) So I deferred an announcement and just started writing every day, not mentioning it for about a month. And the rest is history.
Almost two years into this habit, I am still not making enough time to finish the novel(s). But I’ve published 10 books and counting since August 2020, in my name or under the “Roger Mifflin Collection” banner, as a side effect of ingraining the habit of writing every day.
At this midpoint of 2022, I remain confident the world will be reading a novel about Jeep Thompson and her colleagues by the end of the year. I haven’t beaten inertia yet, but the darn rock is ever so slowly starting to budge.
I have 700 reasons to believe I can make it happen.