I always have a lot on my plate: having a toddler and husband, a business and a still-working-hard-toward-publication writing career will do that to a person. That doesn't count family, friends, church and grocery store visits (seems I'm there more and more each week). At the beginning of July one more To Do got added to my plate thanks to a visit to the ER. Uteran Fibroids, little non-cancerous tumors that are pains in the gut - literally - and that can lead to bigger problems! So in addition to the usual stuff I also had doctor visits and tests to deal with, too, a very low amount of energy because I lost so much blood (oh, the gifts that fibroids can give!) that I became anemic.
And in the middle of all that I received a very promising rejection letter from an editor who didn't want the book I sent them but who did want to see 'anything else' I had ready to go. Insert panicking, tired, crabby Kristi here.
Yes, I had a book nearly ready to go...the nearly was the problem. Thanks to the fibroids I was tired. Not just tired, wiped out. A few days it was a stretch just to walk from my comfy chair into the kitchen without feeling dizzy and wonky. And writing? Forget it. By the time I dealt with my non-fiction stuff my brain was mush. Playing with bebe? Didn't have the energy (thank God for amazing husbands who step in!) but still managed to read or color with her a bit. But getting that partial spit-polished and pretty? I had no idea how to accomplish that.
So I made myself a deal: each hour for 15 minutes, I would make notes or read through a chapter or look for typos. Anything small. And as I began to feel better, I added a little more. For two 15 minutes periods, I took the notes I'd made and integrated those ideas into the WIP. Then I'd read through the changes to find typos, grammar errors...you know the drill. In the beginning of my weird-because-I'm-sick schedule those 15 minutes sessions were excruciating. No, I wasn't in physical pain, but it was so hard to concentrate (or really do much of anything) that I didn't know how to cope.
You know what happened, though? Those 15 minutes sessions gradually got longer, my tiredness did go away as my body healed and I made it through. That partial? Out the door. Will the editor like it? I really hope so, but even if she doesn't I learned something about myself over the last 3 weeks: I can do it. I don't have to have twelve free hours each day to make progress on whatever task I set. Those little increments of time do add up (I did a little editing in my doctor's office one morning!).
This week? Finally feeling like my old self, which is good because a new book is calling...My question to you: do you take advantage of those little bits of time or do you let the So Much To Do, So Little Time frame of mind overwhelm you?