Wednesday, June 1, 2016

IWSG~Snail Writing

Everything about my next words is personal. I guess that's what this monthly posting thing is all about anyway, right? So to say I'm a little nervous is an understatement.
via GIPHY
It's not really anything dramatic, but I'm not in the habit of ripping the seam of my heart open and exposing it to the oxygen of others' eyes. Despite the initial burn, here goes: 
I've been sick. I might have mentioned it in a brief, passing sentence here before, but never really explained. AND, as you might expect from me, I won't go into details now, either. I will say that the few ailments I've been diagnosed with cause extreme fatigue, joint swelling, and pain. To be honest, I can deal with the swelling and pain. But when I can't keep my eyes open to drive a car let alone stare at my computer screen to write because of the fatigue I want to scream. But I'm too tired to do that. Go figure. 

Yes, I'm sure some of you are thinking this is an understandable excuse for not being able to write or get my next draft finished. From a moral and compassionate standpoint, you're correct. Absolutely. But the publishing world isn't always moral and we all know that compassion isn't its strongest characteristic. I'm terrified that if I don't get book II of this series written, edited, perfected, and submitted by summer's end that I'll be left out in the cold. I know my publisher can only accept so many books a year. 

Somehow I must rise above this and write this book. Plus, my YA publisher should be knocking on my email soon to start work on that manuscript. I honestly don't know how I'm going to do this. I feel like I've lost connection with some of  my closest cyber peeps. That's logical with me going through edits for my debut MG novel. Normally, I could jump right back into cyberspace and reconnect. But with this health thing reconnecting has been hard. I guess I'm asking 'Are you still there? Will my CPs and betas forgive such egregious distance?  

The purpose of the IWSG is to share and encourage, posting on the first Wednesday of each month. You'll find writer doubts and concerns without fear of appearing foolish or weak. Support and a common understanding spread throughout the group as many fellow writers can relate. Feel free to JOIN in anytime.
 photo Sheri2.png

29 comments:

  1. So sorry to hear you're not well, Sheri. I do hope a solution can be found soon to help you through. A dear professor friend of mine was suddenly struck down with chronic fatigue syndrome and it was so difficult for her to cope with - especially working full-time and looking after two school aged children. Some days she just couldn't get out of bed. it can strike any of us at any time! Try not to add to the stresses of your illness by feeling guilty about not being able to complete things. It's okay! You are more important than anything else going on and you must try to remember that. Your cyber world pals and your writing buddies, if they are worthy of your friendship, will still be there when you need them. Sending you lots of healing power across the waves and wish you a lot more good days than bad. Keep smiling!!

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    1. Ugh, CFS isn't any fun. I know the term 'fatigue' sounds vague to most people. It did to me before all this. But I will tell you that the exhaustion I felt raising four little kiddos doesn't even compare to this fatigue. Basically, over the last three years I was diagnosed with two autoimmune diseases and one syndrome. Yeah, my body's been busy failing me. lol I'll survive. It's just been an adjustment.

      Thank you for your kind words.

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  2. So sorry for your health challenges, Sheri. They are the most important to deal with. And your family. Maybe try to see when you feel the most awake and carve out a bit of time to write during that time. You may just have to prioritize and not write everything you've planned. I think your editors would understand your health problems and consider your manuscripts at a later date. I know you'll have a lot to do as your book release dates come closer as well.

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    1. Thanks for your optimism about my editor accepting the manuscript at a later date. I'm sure you're correct. It's just I've never - even with raising four kids - let anything stand in the way of what needs to be done, whether it's necessary or self-imposed deadlines. Which, by the way, writing this next book is a self-imposed deadline. I know that writing book 2 in a series is the best thing that a writer can do for book 1 so that's why. I'm finally on medication that seems to be working. We did have to half one of the meds though, due to my hair falling out. O_o

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  3. Sheri, I feel your pain. Well, not your pain, but my pain which is probably close enough. Health is the greatest trial in this life. Here's the deal: if it's stressing you out, it's causing you to be less healthy and therefore is not good for your health. I think sometimes we have to yield to our limitations and accept what is. Most publishers are understanding, but what's the worst that could happen? They don't publish this book? It's better than you running yourself into the ground and suffering the mental agony of feeling like a failure along the way. Don't kill yourself, eh? The blogosphere would be a far sadder place without you.

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    1. You really are right. Maintaining our health really is tough in this life. And, like everything else in life, we don't know what we have until it's gone or at least fleeting. I like your 'deal' mentality. And the books can wait. I know that. But I also know the theory that writing book 2 in a series is the best marketing plan you can have for selling book 1. I'm trying to hammer it out over the summer, so I probably won't be around much after June. But I'll definitely see you in our Build On group.

      Thanks!

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  4. I'm so sorry. Talk to your publisher and explain the situation. It might delay the book, but that sounds like it's in your best interest.

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  5. I bet your readers will help in any way they can.

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  6. I'm sorry!
    People won't forget you. And missing the deadline is better than killing yourself. Your well being is more important.

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    1. Thanks, Alex. I'll tell you, this getting older thing sucks. (Note I said older not old.) After I hit 40 a few years ago all sorts of bodily functions started malfunctioning. WTH? It's all good, though. We're here to grow, learn, and change. I'm just not very good at accepting things I can't control that are getting in my way of doing my job aka Mom, writer, etc...

      Hope all is going well with you!

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  7. I have found that bloggers are very kind and forgiving. They will understand and support you, if you let them. If certain things have to be pushed back, so that any remaining energy can be channeled into your writing, so be it. But, if you really aren't feeling well, or up to it, there is nothing wrong with taking a step back and letting your publisher know. You have to put your health first. Wishing you well. Take care.

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  8. Need to email you. Will on Saturday. Know exactly what you're going through. No fun.

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    1. Aw, Shelly. Please do. No rush, though. Sounds like you can relate and it's be great to chat with someone who 'gets' it. ((hugs))

      Hope you enjoy the rest of your week.

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  9. I'm betting your CPs and Betas won't mind a bit (these type of people tend to be amazing in so many ways). I'd never thought about making sure one got the next book in with the publisher due to publication restraints, but that makes sense. Don't worry about it though and write as you feel up to it. Take care!

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  10. I'm betting your CPs and Betas won't mind a bit (these type of people tend to be amazing in so many ways). I'd never thought about making sure one got the next book in with the publisher due to publication restraints, but that makes sense. Don't worry about it though and write as you feel up to it. Take care!

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  11. I'm so sorry, Shari, that you're going through this. I know your CPs and betas will understand. I would! Hang in there. Give yourself grace. No one will forget you, especially not your readers and blogging friends.

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  12. Um, not sure where my first attempt at a comment went, but here's what I meant to say:
    I'm sorry your struggling with your health and under such a weighty timeline.
    We will not forget you if you need to take time off and focus on your health and your manuscript. Please let me know if I can help. Hugs!

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  13. It's only when we don't have our health that we appreciate it. Hey! You should focus on getting better the best way you can. We all have these challenges and we all understand how difficult they are to overcome. Take care. Be well.

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  14. Hi Sherry - I'm sure people will understand - the blogging fraternity is quite good at picking up the vibes and being their for support. I just hope you can work a way through these challenges, without making things worse ... your health is the most important thing, yet your brain sometimes says I need to do more - and yes, a little of this and that won't do too much harm and may spur you on. Yet you will know to do that 'little' and not too much .. all the best - Hilary

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  15. Take care of your health. When you're not feeling well (or hurting) it's hard to think about anything else. Best wishes.

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  16. Sounds like you're going through a rough patch! Health problems can be tough to deal with. Take the time to get better, and don't worry about your deadlines. Your health is the most important thing right now. I'm sure you'll find understanding. Hugs!

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  17. Oh Sheri, I'm so sorry to hear your sick. I know you're putting all this pressure on yourself to get it done, but maybe Diane is right. Maybe you should let your publisher know it may take you longer than you were hoping. I've been feeling overwhelmed and stressed about making my deadline for the end of summer as well, and I'm not even sick! So I can only imagine what you're going through. Shoot me an email if you want to talk. I'll always be here for you whenever you're ready for me to read or whatever. Hugs!!

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  18. Take care of yourself, Sheri. I know it's tough, but your health is important. The writing will be there. Like others have said, publishers are understanding. Do what you can. Hugs and prayers coming your way. If I can help in any way, let me know.

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  19. I'm sorry you're going through that. I am sure your close writing friends will completely understand. As for meeting your pub deadlines, let them know what's happening if needed. And I'm a big fan of alternative treatments, so if you haven't already, perhaps get a little out of the box and add some natural remedies. Homeopathy, essential oils and other things like that can work wonders when paired with traditional medicine. Good luck!

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    1. Thank you so much for your advice and kind words, Alexia! I'm a fan of alternative treatments as well. We have a natural remedies store in a neighboring town, which I visit often. I've definitely picked up a few things. I've never really tried the essential oils thing because I'm not well-educated in what they do. I'll have to look into it. (btw - love your name!)

      Thank you for stopping by and commenting. I really appreciate it.

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  20. Sheri, I'm so sorry and if there's anything i can do to help, let me know. I may not be around the corner, but I am only a few counties away :)

    And yes, getting older ain't for sissies and boy is that the truth.

    Nice to know you're not a sissy, tho, right :)

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  21. Sheri,

    I understand. Almost 10 year ago I started battling the same symptoms. Not having insurance, I haven't had an "official" diagnosis, but I have been blessed to work in the alternative health field, off and on, for those ten years. CFS is horrible and so many people don't (and won't) understand it. It's frustrating when you wake up with all the motivation in the world but you have no energy and the pain takes every ounce of energy you do have just to get ready to go to work. That's what I'm dealing with now. The day job, while only part time, takes all my energy and the days and times I'm off I have to spend resting so I can be on my feet for my 5-6 hour shifts.

    You're definitely NOT weak and NOT a sissy!! I speak from experience: you CAN get through the rough times and make the relapses few and farther between. It's taken me eight years to figure out what I need to do to keep things under control but still, the weather, a change in schedule, throws me off again. Right now, I'm battling a relapse that hit me after a weekend spent visiting family and friends. Don't beat yourself up! That's the one lesson I've found the hardest to learn.

    Sending prayers and good thoughts your way. I hope you find what works for you soon! The best thing you can do is be gentle with yourself, work when you can, and rest when you have to. It isn't easy, but it works.

    xo Jen

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    1. OH! And here's a link to a site on Myalgic Encephalomyelitis. Big name, yes, but it better describes what we deal with when we say CFS. Besides, when you say Chronic Fatigue Syndrome, you're bound to get a reaction like I did: "Oh, you're tired all the time? Me too." Grr...: http://rarediseases.org/rare-diseases/myalgic-encephalomyelitis/

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    2. Thank you for sharing your experience, Jen! I'm sure you know how much it means when someone else understands your symptoms because they've experienced them. I think you hit it on the head, at least for me. I'm still learning to adjust how my body reacts to the world around me now. Over the last five years, I've been diagnosed with Raynaud's, Sjorgrens, and, most recently, Hashimotos. The last two have such similar symptoms that my doctors have had a hard time figuring out which disease is causing which symptom and that effects my treatment.

      I have four active kids, who've always been involved in a ton of sports and activities. I'm the mom who's always been on screech. Granted, my kids are older now - youngest is 12yr - which helps. But I can't hardly get out of my own way let alone do anything for anyone else. You mentioned getting ready in the morning. I totally dread getting ready in the morning, because I'm exhausted after. So stupid. And feeling like this has kind of made me depressed. I'm sure I'll eventually rise above it, but it's just such a struggle right now.

      I wish you all the health and 'energy' so you can live each day to the fullest. Again, I really appreciate you sharing your experience with me. If you ever need to vent I'm here.

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