Wednesday, November 19, 2008

Where in the World is Janna's Motivation?

To be honest, I think I must've thrown it out. See, there were all the soggy Kleenex, back when I was dealing with that monster sinus infection. Maybe I scooped it up with the limp masses of tissue and unknowingly tossed it out. Or, maybe it got carried away with all the old bathroom guts the day we tore everything out and installed the new stuff. Perhaps it's clinging to the bowl of the old toilet right this minute, waiting for transfer to the Plumber's Graveyard.

Wait!

Maybe, just maybe, it's in the trunk of my car. It's possible I moved it back there when I shifted some of the girls' toys and books and things from the floorboard. It's certainly worth a look.

But wherever it is, I hope it's not lost forever. Because I really need it. Not only have I been unable to work on Novel #2 for WEEKS, but I'm having trouble coming up with good and thoughtful blog post ideas. This does not bode well for a writer. Or rather, Girl Who Calls Herself a Writer. Can't rightly claim the title if I can't do it.

I blame it (just a bit) on the fact that not only am I still recuperating from all those things I've been dealing with (I whine not - I know we all have such things shaping our existence day to day), but the fact that my house is in such disarray. Sure, we're making progress (HUGE!) with our remodel, but all the "normal" stuff - laundry, dishes, plain ol' organization - falls to the wayside in the meantime. And when all that stuff backs up, my brain gets frazzled. Discombobulated, even. ('Tis a great word I just had to throw in the mix.) I'm not in control, I feel no balance. Who can sit down and pound out a great novel when that's the case? Not me.

So my hope is that, while we work to get the last of our Before The Holidays Projects done, I can get all the other things reined in, too. And then maybe when I get my new office area put together, where I can spread my things over my desk and get a feel for my new space - without the threat of so many other things looming over me - I'll find my motivation sitting right in front of me. Like a beautifully wrapped present, waiting to be opened with flourish by yours truly.

Here's hoping.

24 comments:

Brian and Kelly said...

Good news about the house though! So jealous... I'm off to console myself with a brownie it seems I've earned by commenting :-)

WendyCinNYC said...

I think the new office area might just pull that motivation out from hiding.

Janna Qualman said...

Kelly, I can't wait for you to see it. It's not even the same house!

Wendy - I hope you're right. And thanks for the vote of confidence. :)

Ang said...

I feel your pain Janna. But I am sure your new office will do the trick. I have a file for my dream office and will have it in a few years when we purchase our new home. I do find it hard to concentrate in my little, cluttered corner. You will find your motivation soon...when you least expect it.

crazynance said...

I recently had to clear mass amounts of clutter from my work area, and my brain had an amazing co-related clearance!
Wherever you plan to write, clear a space and put all the clutter behind you.. literally! Then don't EVER turn your head! ;)

Melanie Avila said...

Janna, I have a hard time being creative when there's chaos all around me. While I'm sure it'll come back when your office is put together, be careful not to put so much pressure on yourself to be a genius once you sit down at your new desk.

Maybe you should do a few more prompts in the meantime, just to keep your writerly mind sharp. You don't have to post them, but then at least you won't be coming in cold, expecting miracles.

Janet said...

I know exactly where your motivation is. It ran a ladder to my window and ran off with my motivation.

I suspect that when the rest of your life settles down, it will creep in sheepishly one day and ask if you can be friends again. When it does, make it conditional on sending mine back home.

Rachel Burton said...

WEll for someone who's lost her motivation, that was a funny post! And I feel you. I've started to get distracted by the holidays, the two month black hole when I get little else done besides eating and spending too much.

Joanne said...

Once your office is done, or even in the meantime, get yourself a classic old movie. Say, An Affair to Remember, or Hitchcock, Rear Window. Curl up beneath a blanket with a bowl of popcorn and watch how the masters did it, drawing you in. Give yourself over to the movie, every detail, and it will at some level inspire you to create, to get the juices flowing, seeing perfection on the screen. You'll just be inspired to create perfection on the page!

Janna Qualman said...

Ang - When I least expect it. I bet you're right. And good luck on that eventual dream office! :)

crazynance - ROFL!

Melanie - That's great advice!

Janet - LOL! Boy, are they in trouble...

Why, thank you, Rachel! And maybe you're right. There's always too much going on around the holidays. And that's just with food! ;)

Joanne, I love that idea! And I've (believe it or not) never seen either of them. I'll check 'em out!

MichaƩle said...

I have always felt a bit envious of my friends that work out of the home in the fact that they can go to work, get the job done, and come home. Those of us that are at home with our children and working at home don't have that luxury and therefore, I rarely feel that feeling of accomplishment of a task completely finished. This is evidenced by the fact that before my vacation, when I cleaned out the utility closet (my thinking was that should something happen to me while I was gone and people were going through my things, I would be horrified if they saw the state my closets were in.) I was so proud of myself that my children kept finding me, standing in front of the closet, door wide opening, enjoying the clean, organized look that said "I actually finished something."

Angie Ledbetter said...

Maybe you just have the burnout bug. If so, it'll pass soon. Plus, with all the stuff going on in the house, nothing settled and completed...

Try swapping to a different genre for a bit. Sometimes that can be really refreshing and inspirational. How's about an article on living in the midst of renovation? Whatever spills out, at least you're writing!

Hugs for the writing journey.

thedomesticfringe said...

I'm sure you just ahve too much on the brain. It's kinda like when our computer's freeze...we have to turn them off for a few minutes and restart them. Take a break. Relax a little and your creative genius will strike again.

ChristaCarol said...

Good luck with it all! I totally feel you. My motivation gets sucked dry when I have so much on my list of things to do I get overwhelmed and don't know where to begin. I'm in the same boat right now. My house just went through a tornado (not in the literal sense) and we still have to get the nursery ready. Ug. I hope you find yours before I find mine!

Terri Tiffany said...

You are doing a lot and that takes some of your motivation from you--I was there awhile ago so give yourself a break and focus on getting your house back in order etc. And Wendy is right--when you have your new office--you are going to want to write!
Also I know you are on hold waiting on the publisher to contact you either way--that changes things too,

Jen said...

You know, sometimes, even your motivation needs a break. :) You've had an awful lot on your plate, and sometimes, you just don't have the energy left to tackle something else.

I think the suggestion to practice with prompts is a good one. So is keeping up with the blog (selfish of me, hee hee), or even just journaling. Keeps your skillz sharp, without the pressure to produce, which is really something that might not be best right now.

It'll come back, though, never fear. It's just on a beach somewhere, sipping a Bahama Mama and takin' in the sun. *hugs*

aaroncrocco said...

Oh Janna I'm going through the same thing right now (as you've probably seen from my blog and lack of posts). It's frustrating and annoying to lose the drive. I'm working on easing myself back into the writing routines I had a few weeks ago and hoping that works. I haven't touched my WIP in weeks.

Melissa Marsh said...

This sounds exactly like me. If my house is a mess, I can't write. Just can't do it.

Don't worry - your motivation will come back. It's just that you can't be motivated about EVERYTHING at the same time. You have to be motivated for remodeling your house right now. The motivation to write will still be there when you're done (or at least when you get closer to being done!).

rightonmom said...

Well, know that you're not alone. I think my mojo is out with yours somewhere. I hope they're having a good time but come back soon!! A nice office space I think should ease some of the burden for you.

Pink Ink said...

Mmm, went south for the winter??

Maybe you can trick it with some Hawaiaan music, pina coladas and a hammock strung up in your remodeled house :-).

Good luck!

Jen said...

Have you tried changing WHERE you write? Maybe going to a library or a coffee shop?

Or have you tried switching up HOW you write? If you normally write on the computer, give longhand a try.

These are things that have helped me when my motivation has been less than stellar.

Good luck!

Janna Qualman said...

MichaƩle - I understand completely! I know well what it's like to return again and again to a finished project, just to view it in all its glory. :D

Angie, I think you're right. Trying something - anything - different may be of help. Thanks!

Fringegirl - Relaxing sounds sooooooooo nice. I can't wait to kick back for an ENTIRE day - without being sick!

Christa - Stinks, huh? Thanks for the commiseration. :)

Terri - I really think that's true. I feel the potential when I stand where my desk is going to be.

Jen - You're so good for my ego. ;)

Aaron - I'm trying to figure out if easing is the way to go, or if I should jump in head first...

Melissa - I think I do know that; that my motivation will come back. But still there's that worry.

rightonmom - Mojos, wherefore art thou? Come back, stat!

Pink - Totally possible. It's freezing here in the midwest. ;)

Jen - No, I haven't. But that's a really good suggestion. I'll have to see what magic I can work. Thanks!

Josh said...

check behind the fridge, when I lose things, they usually end up there....i know...weird huh.

Terri Tiffany said...

How's the motivation today?