Monday, September 06, 2010

The Sordid Details

StupifiedIf you've been following my escapades over at ADDaboy!, you'll know that I recently quit blogging over there so that I could focus on my book writing. I promised more details later, and now is later.

I started off the year with a big goal. I wanted to write a picture book, a chapter book, and a novel by the time I turned 44 in December. I figured this would be a good way to determine which format suited me best. This seemed a foolhardy goal to some, but I knew I would learn important things about myself if I undertook a massive goal. Since being the first 43 year old to travel around the world in an inflatable raft seemed an unlikely goal to achieve, due in no small part to not owning a raft, I opted to pursue the former goal.

Then I was given the opportunity to work for It seemed like a good idea at the time. I would write regularly, proving a point to myself, and I would get paid to write. It wasn't much of a payment, but it was something and boy, oh, boy would that look good on my cover letters. The problem was that I only have so much time in the day. As much as I'd like to pretend otherwise, I am disabled, and a full-time father to boot. The only writing I ended up doing was for Then, if I had time, I would work on my novels, and lastly, I might scribe something over here. It wasn't supposed to work out that way.

In the end, there were no finished manuscripts to present with my snazzy cover letter to editors. I even forgot to mail my finished picture book out to agents and publishers. Never mind that my picture book was dull, my chapter book became a novel, and my novel remained in its perfect unblemished form inside my head, I couldn't finish the ADDaboy! posts fast enough. Unlike the last few weeks, I spent months at the mercy of chronic motor tic disorder. It does tend to get in the way when your hand flinges and thwangs about like a flailing water hose. Hard to type.

I reasoned that if the tic disorder and my raging insomnia continued to make havoc of my life, I would most likely never finish my books—not if all my writing time was spent blogging ADDaboy! and researching for the articles. By July, we had come to rely on that money, so giving it up would be tough. My wife and I prayed and pondered and came to the conclusion to start afresh. My dream to be a published author was just too important to me to give up. Even if they tripled what they paid me, it still would have been too important.

One factor that made the decision difficult was that they enjoyed my writing and didn't want me to go. As an adult with ADHD, having an employer who treasures my skill set is as rare as Bigfoot babies. And I liked working with them, too. To give that up was very, VERY difficult, but I needed to do what was right for me and my family. So I put in my notice. I also accepted the job to be (very) part time webmaster for a small non-profit here in Utah (DUIhope). I would only work 8-10 hours a month and it more than replaced what I made blogging ADDaboy! It all came together rather nicely. I wish I could say I planned it that way.

And now you know almost everything, though I have kept some secrets. Thanks for hanging in there with me. Tomorrow I will reveal actual writing progress which may astound you.


Follow me on Twitter for my ADHD escapades at @SplinteredMind or my novel writing project over at @DouglasCootey. And if you're a glutton for punishment you can friend me on Facebook as well.