I'm struggling a bit more than I'd like.

I think I'm fine. I do seem to come up with what I need to come up with, though it can sometimes take most of the day. I stick to it, I get a few words on page, I come back to it again and again, and eventually, I get there. But it's been a little harder than it used to be. Part of it is that I have changed gears too often, and I have been interrupted a little too often.

But mostly, it's that I had too much left unfinished and I need to finish them.

When I'm done with the tidying up process, I swear I'm going to write one-ups from then on, and that I'm going to write them from beginning to end without interruption.

I figure pretty much the rest of this year is going to be used in doing house cleaning. Then it's a free horizon.

I took two of my new snake chapters to writer's group, and disappointingly, Gary poked holes in them. I mean, that's why I go, so that I can get outside input. I'll make some of the changes he suggested, though I'm still not sure I want to cut the lead character's backstory. He did the ultimate critique of telling me I was "Telling not showing." Ouch.

I've come to the conclusion that if Snaked doesn't get accepted by the publisher(s) I'm sending to, it wasn't meant to be. Not that it isn't a good book, or as good as I can do, but that it isn't mainstream material. (Which may mean I can't deliver mainstream material.) Strangely, and I couldn't tell you why I think this way, this doesn't make my writing invalid in my eyes.

So I wrote yesterday about how I feel like I'm making good progress in my career. This morning I checked my sales, and they are in a lull. (For now...it's happened before and came back as soon as a new book came out...)

It's funny. I think in some ways I'm writing as if my career was going well, like I've constructed this parallel universe where my actions are having effect.

I've done this before. For years in the store I kept doing things that I thought a successful store should do, even though I wasn't getting the results that made me a successful store. If that makes sense.

It isn't faking it until I make it; it's more doing the things that need to be done even when you don't see results. Eventually, success did come, and I was already positioned to take advantage of it.

That is, the work and the result were disconnected, but the work had to come first either way, so why not do it?

It's hard to explain. If you feel like you're doing the right things, you keep doing them even when you aren't rewarded, and the doing the right thing then becomes the reward.