Monday, November 26, 2012

Interval Training for Writers?

Before I start, I'd like to direct you to my partner in crime William Kendall's blog. If you want to know the answer to that a-few-years-old question, "Who let the dogs out?" William has the answer!

I'd planned to write about something completely different today...but as I was attempting to catch up on reading the blogs I follow, I came across a post on Talli Roland's blog that caught my attention (something not easily accomplished these days).

Talli, about to publish yet another wonderful novel, blogged about a post on literary agent Rachelle Gardner's blog. Interval training for writers? It was intriguing enough for me to check it out.

As anyone who's been following this blog with any regularity knows, my inability to actually finish a book in the past four years has been a source of major frustration for me. It's bothered me that the things that once came easily are now a constant struggle. It goes with aging for most of us--or so I've been telling myself. I'm easily distracted. I have the attention span of a gnat. I'm desperate at this point. I'll try anything.

In the past year, the only "new" releases I've had are actually reissues of my old Berkley books in ebook format. I have several works in progress, but nothing completed. Anything longer than a blog post is a challenge equal to climbing Mount Everest!

It took me ten years to complete Chasing the Wind. I've been working on the sequel, An Army of Angels, since 2008. I've considered switching genres. Romantic comedy is easier to write and usually of a shorter length. I've gone back to writing first drafts in longhand. I've even done a bit of research on circadian rhythms.

And I've wondered if I should just give up. Retire.

But this just might work. Even my wandering brain could probably manage two or three 90-minute sessions daily. I might even turn out something good....


  1. Army of Angels will come as it comes. I think some of the concepts you have in mind for other directions are going to be the next natural phase for you as a writer.

  2. Norma, don't give up! If interval training doesn't work, have you considered that you might have ADD? I've run into a lot of people who have been diagnosed as adults. They say medication has helped them stay focused and be more productive. Also, I've heard that meditation (instead of meds) has been helpful for ADD sufferers. Just a little food for thought:).

    1. I've thought about that, Maria. I'm epileptic--I had a brain injury at 16 and another in my late 20s. The second one damaged my inner ear as well.

      I could handle meditation. One more drug and I'd probably crash. I already take 11 each day, much as I hate to admit it!

  3. Never give up! Gosh even if it took you ten years to write your last novel, the majority of people will NEVER write a book in their lifetime, so you should be mega proud of your achievements. I have nothing but admiration for writers, it is the hardest thing to do, maybe the 'interval training' would be just the thing you need to 'jump start' the flow again Norma.

  4. Thank you, Grace! It's the words of encouragement that really keep me going!'s the start of summer in your part of the world? Wish I were there! Australia is one of the places I'm hoping to see before I croak!

  5. Thank you for the shout out! I've struggled with finding the best ways for me to work efficiently. Ninety-minute slots I can *just* about handle, and taking breaks gives me the motivation to keep going.


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