Monday, May 30, 2011

The Necessity of Scaling Back

You may or may not have noticed (or cared :) that for the last couple of weeks I've only been posting on the blog once per week. No, it's not me being lazy or forgetful. I made a conscious decision that for the next little while I need to scale back on a few activities - one of which is how often I really need to post on this blog.

I'm not advocating a complete retreat from social networking - far from it. I will still be on Twitter and Facebook and on Verla Kay's message boards. I don't think I overuse my time on those sites (well, Verla's can be an addiction, I must admit). I think every writer needs to have connectivity to other writers in order to survive, maintain sanity and impart and receive support. I will also still visit the blogs of fellow writers and gain knowledge, laughs, tears on whatever topic catches my interest that day. Again, this is not about complete retreat - it is about determining what is essential. It is about how much time I spend on what activity and, for me, the blog posts took up more thought and time space than those other things.

It is not a coincidence that I've finished the rough first draft of a WIP that's been a long time gestating in the same period that I scaled back on doing posts for the blog. I found I was thinking way too much about what to post every few days than what I needed to be worrying about - what to write so I could finish this damn book! So why, now that I have the first draft, am I not going to blog twice weekly again? Because, for me, the most important part of writing - the re-writing - is when I have to have the most focus. This revision is probably going to be the hardest one I've ever done. The book will expand and contract in numerous ways. Ultimately, what I have to remember is the philosophy of scaling back: there is too much unnecessary clutter in our lives and when we let go of those things that are not absolutely essential we are free to make the necessary things so much more important and meaningful in our lives.

Think about it. If you had to give up a few things related to your writing life what would they be? The only essential thing, really, is the writing. It is the water we all need to drink from in order to survive and thrive. So, yeah, I'll be drinking a lot more of it these days. :)


  1. I understand exactly what you mean. Actually, I've noticed a lot of people on my blog roll doing the same thing. I'm considering scaling back a little bit myself, if only so I don't wear out my bloggy welcome into people's precious online time. *grin*

  2. I've been heading in this direction, too. You're absolutely right that the less time you spend online, the more writing you can get done. I love the blogging world, but I think it's important to find a balance. I'm still working at it... :-)

  3. I try hard to balance posting/blogging with writing. So far, it's worked. But if it ever didn't? My writing would always come first! It has to. Of course after family. Hope this next draft rocks!

  4. Hi Linda: Oh, I hope you don't scale back too much! Your blog is one of the ones that gives me a much needed smile!

    Hi Anna: I hear you, Anna. Let me know when you've found your balance (I think I'll be teetering for a while).

  5. It's true the the blogosphere is a time suck. I think scaling back is a good move, much better than eliminating it! Good luck with your revisions.

  6. Hi Laura: I think you've done amazingly well with all the information you give to writers, Laura. I'm sure your books are as great as your blog posts.

    Hi Lisa: Thanks! That's the great thing about being in control of things, isn't it? I can expand or contract as I need to. Much like revisions...