ROW80 Check-In #6 – January 20, 2019



Lost Weekend


This one is a tough one to write.

It’s been a rough few days as far as my ROW80 goals go; my motivation was de-railed since the last check-in and I haven’t managed to bring it back on track.

This past week I went back to work after an extended holiday/layoff period. It’s always a tough adjustment going from living like a normal person back to living like a vampire again (I work 3rd shift), and the older I get, the harder it gets.

I was doing well with keeping up with my goals up until Thursday.

This past Thursday, we had an event to attend, which was also an anniversary party of sorts. I had a great time… (too great), and so Friday was a bit of a wash as far as being productive.

I don’t know whether it’s this time of year or my upcoming birthday, but January always seems to be a bit of a downer for me, so between fighting the blues, acclimating to my work schedule, and maybe some post-holiday blahs, it wasn’t a very good week for me overall.

I hit my writing goals more days than not earlier in the week, though just barely, so my word count isn’t as high as it should be for the end of this week, and word count is something that’s been weighing on my mind lately.

The manuscript is now above 115,000 words, and there’s still a lot of story to tell.

That fact had me down a bit, I’ll admit. My desire to start editing now has been hard to overcome, and often, while I’m trying to write, I get distracted by thoughts of what parts that I’ve already written that should be cut out. It really is affecting my writing, and dredging up the old voices telling me that I should probably just give this whole silly idea up.

That’s thrown me off quite a bit, and while I have managed to sit down and do some writing over the past couple of days, I’ve been nowhere near hitting my word goals.

Here’s the breakdown…

Goal #1 – Finish my First Draft

I’ve only managed to write another 1500 words since the last check-in, for reasons listed above.

I’m really going to try and get back on track, though, and get back to my daily output of 1000 words per day.  I’m hoping starting a new week will act like a good slate cleaning.

So, since this Round began, I’ve written about 23,800 words.

Goal #2 – Write At Least Three Articles/Essays

Again, I haven’t started on this one yet, because, as I’ve mentioned before, I’m saving this one for when I’m done the first draft and want to take a break from it.

Goal #3 – Start Editing

I still haven’t started on this one, either. Can’t edit until the draft is done. I’m a horrible self-editor, so I’m really trying to not go back and edit while I write.  I’m saving all of the editing for when the draft is done.

Goal #4 – Read at least Two Books

I did make a bit more progress with this one. I’m still reading Forever And A Day, by Anthony Horowitz, and am on page 139 of 245. I’m still really enjoying it, and can’t wait to see how the story plays out.

Well, that’s it.  Hope you’re all doing better than I have this weekend.




8 thoughts on “ROW80 Check-In #6 – January 20, 2019

  1. Hello fellow third-shifter! I understand how hard it can be to get back into the swing of things after time off. January is just kind of bleah, sometimes. I think it’s because it’s after the excitement of the holidays and there’s nothing much really going on — plus, if you’re in the Midwest, that seems to be the times when the bad weather hits.

    I definitely feel you on the whole “My manuscript is X many words long but not close to finished.” My current novel WIP is stuck in limbo right now and I’m trying to decide if I should continue from where I am or go back and edit what I have, then continue from that point. I’m leaning toward bulling through with what I have because I’m afraid of getting stuck in an endless loop of getting three-quarters done and starting over.
    One bit of advice I would give (and that I’m going to try for myself) is to write down the ideas you have for editing so you have them stored for later while you keep working on the current draft.

    And for what it’s worth? You’re 1500 words further along than you were; you’ve managed to meet your goals even while having a crummy week and you’ve got plans for where you want to go next. I’d call this a win.
    Good luck and keep on trucking!

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Thank you for the kind words. I think part of the reason this hiccup is affecting me so much is that it’s the first time in over three months that I’ve gone for more than one day without writing anything. I’m worried about losing the momentum I’ve built up. I’m also a bit burnt out, I think. I really thought that I’d have this first draft done by now.

      Hopefully, I’ll manage to pull myself out of this funk and get back to it. Winter is only so long, after all 🙂


  2. I’m a 3rd shift person too! Half of the time I don’t know what day it is and when I wake up from a nap, I have to consult my phone to figure out if it’s am or pm. It can really mess with you. Between weird sleeping schedules and January mood (Do you have trouble with SAD?), I can totally see how writing could be difficult. I’m sure you’ll adjust!

    For me personally, sometimes editing earlier parts of a work or something else entirely can help me find the inspiration to write more of it. Changing the focus off of writing for a bit can give me renewed enthusiasm for the project. Potentially a change of pace and writing an article or two might give you a break from the fiction and let you come back to it with fresh eyes too.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Yeah, the third shift thing can really mess you up, especially this time of year. I’ve never actually been diagnosed with SAD, but I do think I have a touch of it. The winter months hit hard, and these past two years we haven’t been able to afford a trip down south for a week to break up the drudgery. We used to take a week in Feb/March and go to the Carribean, but the last couple of years have been a bit tighter than usual.

      I really want to stick to the plan I outlined for my goals at the beginning of this round, but you might be right… perhaps I should work on another writing project for a bit and come back to the draft afterwards with some fresher eyes.

      Thank you.


  3. I’d like to echo a lot of what Kathu said. And another idea? I’m not sure what software you use, but most of them allow you to highlight a bunch of text in your documents. If you can’t bring yourself to stop musing over the text, why not go through a reading of it…. don’t change anything, just read it through and highlight it. If you’re using Word or Google Doc, use the comment feature to note places you feel need edits and why (in Scrivener, used the inline annotation shortcut). If you see stuff you really feel needs to be cut, use the strikeout font to mark it, but again, don’t delete it.

    And hopefully you’ll find yourself getting back on track in a bit. Change is a good thing, but disruption of routine can be challenging.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Good advice as well, but I am a very detail oriented person, and I fear that if I go back at all right now, I’ll just get bogged down in trying to make everything “perfect” that I won’t be able to get back to finishing it.

      Right now, I’m using Pages on my rickety old MacBook, but I do plan to move it all over to Scrivener when the draft is done.

      Thanks 🙂

      Liked by 1 person

  4. Getting back to work is always an off period for me too. Maybe you should just accept that and be glad you were still able to write these 1,500 words.
    Especially if you change your routine drastically with the 3rd shift!

    We’re not robots, so it’s ok if we’re not productive every day. It’s probably what’s keeping us sane…

    Liked by 1 person

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