Goal Post: A Possible Return to Writing

The last time I wrote anything new was late August/early September.  I’m talking stories and not blog posts.  This school year has been really busy both as a TA and as a parent, so time and energy weren’t there.  Now, I’m hoping that can start changing and I can pull off writing two books before the next school year.  That’s the plan and I’m sure people have already rushed to the comments to say good luck.

The problem is that I’m still getting life thrown at me.  I factored in my son’s Lego Robotics competition today.  I didn’t expect to be getting new air conditioners installed today, which means I can’t work on the book before I meet him for the competition.  This also meant that my room had to get rearranged to a point where the energy is so off that I’m simply uncomfortable.  So, I couldn’t start last night and will have to start tonight once I put everything back.  This means I’ll come one section short of finishing 3 of 19 chapters before things get busy again.  Hopefully, nothing else comes up and brings that number down.

Then again, I might be writing slow because I’m not feeling very confident.  It’s been so long and my stress is still high.  Feels like people throw things at me every time I try to get close to writing too.  Guilt trips for not doing other stuff even though I haven’t touched my books in 9 months.  So, I’m mentally battered.  It doesn’t look like that’s going to change any year soon either.  After all, I’ve been pushing the whole ‘I can write when the chaos is done’ timeline for months and it keeps getting longer.  With my son’s extracurricular events and the AP proctoring done, I shouldn’t be crashing before nighttime.  That’s a good step towards the physical thing, but the mental and emotional state are going to be the hurdles.  It’s far too easy to shove me into a melancholy and there are too many people in my life who see that as a hobby.

So . . . what happened this week?  It’s a smattering of stuff.  I finished all of the October posts. Work was busy since we were heading for a 3-day weekend.  For obvious reasons, there was some tension.  My son had his chorus concert on Tuesday and we celebrated with Friendly’s ice cream afterwards.  The usual schoolwork was going on too.  Last weekend had my niece joining us for Saturday and part of Sunday.  My son cooked my mom’s chili recipe for both dinner and a Home & Careers final project.  Worked out well and then . . . we found out the refrigerator had died.  Yeah, that threw a chaotic monkey wrench into the whole week until we got a new one.  At least I have space in this one and the ice maker works.

Only other big thing is that my son is back to drawing and is now attempting to do stuff by eye.  No more step-by-step videos.  He’s going to take a picture and try to draw it on his own.  Here’s his first attempt:

Princess Peach

He plans on drawing Princess Peach multiple times and with different dresses.  This is how he’s going to practice and he wants to cover all of her Super Smash costumes.  At least he’s back to this and not just playing video games.

Can’t think of much else to talk about here.  I’m not feeling entirely on the ball, which has me nervous about attempting to write tonight.  The idea of trying to get back into it and failing miserably keeps running through my mind because I don’t have it in me to handle that scenario.  Waited so long to try again and I’m doing it after taking such an emotional beating.  I’ll just be honest.  There is no real support system for me doing this any more and that hurts.  People see it as a useless hobby that I need to put away because I tried and failed already.  Nobody wants to hear about my ideas or give me real time and space to write unless they have no use for me.  So, for the first time in my life, I really do feel like I’m walking this path in total isolation from this side of the computer.  It’s not sitting well with me and makes accessing the Darwin Slepsnor part of my brain more difficult.  At least I won’t get to writing him until tomorrow after lunch.

So, goals of the week:

  1. Start writing Darwin & the Halfling Hunt.  Hoping to get 3 chapters done before next weekend.
  2. Work as usual.
  3. Parenting as usual.
  4. Continue biking 3-4 times a week.
  5. Hydrate because I need it.
  6. Put my room back together after the new AC installed.
  7. Work on ‘Lego Globe’ a bit.  Can’t now because the work desk is covered in stuff moved away from AC area.
  8. Finish watching ‘Outlaw Star’ and start watching ‘The Pentaverate’.
  9. Continue making list of healthier foods to start eating over the summer.

About Charles Yallowitz

Charles E. Yallowitz was born, raised, and educated in New York. Then he spent a few years in Florida, realized his fear of alligators, and moved back to the Empire State. When he isn't working hard on his epic fantasy stories, Charles can be found cooking or going on whatever adventure his son has planned for the day. 'Legends of Windemere' is his first series, but it certainly won't be his last.
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20 Responses to Goal Post: A Possible Return to Writing

  1. Those are ambitious summer plans. Life does get in the way, but I hope you meet your summer goals.


  2. Your son is an amazing artist!


  3. A great piece of artwork. All the best on this week’s goals.


  4. My writing goal before summer started:

    1. Finish the outline for the fantasy novel…
    – Didn’t happen.

    My writing goals for the summer break:

    1. Finish the outline I didn’t finish before summer break.
    – Ongoing.
    2. Write at least 40,000 words per month in the actual novel.
    – Ongoing.

    So I feel your pain. Sometimes I feel like I don’t have much support with my writing either. I wrote a true story about what happened to my daughter a year or so ago. The novel has been published since December and my wife has never read any of it. She says it’s still too emotionally painful to relive for her and I get that, but it’s still very hard not to have her with me through the experience. Side note: if you are curious, the book is called Prayers from the Valley and it’s available on Amazon. By D. Michl Lowe.

    D. Michl Lowe


    • I think I got lucky that I’ve had several weekend days where I was so exhausted that I could only lay in bed and work on my summer outlines. Weird sentence to write there. Still, nap, outline, repeat worked out somehow.

      I hope she can read it at some point. I can see how it would be tough to do and the support issue. My books are just fantasy adventures. Friends and family don’t even buy them any more. Many have been telling me from the beginning that fantasy isn’t their thing, so they wouldn’t even suggest the books to others. Makes it a lonely road to travel.

      Good luck with your summer writing goals.


      • I have a blog post coming out on Wednesday called “My Guilt and Inspiration” that you should read. It kinda talks a bit about this type of thing for us Authors. Keep writing your fantasy adventures. I find that if I don’t write, I get antsy and feel odd inside my soul. There are stories inside me that have to come out or I will explode I think. In some ways, I’m betting all writers are similar. There’s something about the written word, that when it actually gets outside of our body it helps the inside of us in some way.


      • Not writing leads to me getting anxious and depressed. I definitely start pulling into myself and letting the demons take over. So, this 9 month . . . Is it a drought if you can’t write because life is in the way instead of not having the desire?


      • Life getting in the way is what leads us to good writing. Good writing comes from us as people. When our lives “get in the way” it’s the universe enhancing our experiences so that our writing becomes not only more real, but also purposeful. I’ve written about this before, but my Grandfather wrote letters to the editor of his local newspaper a lot. He cut them out and kept them in a cedar chest. My dad and I have poured over that chest time and time again, reading and rereading everything that man wrote. I think my dad would consider his father’s writing as one of his greatest treasures since he died when my dad was only ten. I find value in writing for myself, personally, but also for future generations who might pick up my books and be inspired, blessed, and of course entertained. We write because thats what we are, we are writers. It’s a part of us.


      • I’ve heard that theory, but I don’t think that works for every author. I mean, I write fantasy stories that don’t talk place on earth and involve magic. Me struggling through work and parenting while dealing with my ex-wife contributes nothing to my writing. I’ve gone through enough mental anguish and heartbreak to not need any more to access for my writing. At some point, the universe needs to start enhancing some positive experiences if it wants me to go along with the theory. This is why I think life getting in the way is more society not being geared towards nurturing anything that falls into the categories of art, relaxation, and mental recovery. Might getting too deep there.


      • Maybe so. I guess I can’t speak for everyone. I hope the negative and the positive experiences I have in life inspire and enhance my writing. Good writing is about both. A good character is one written so that the character is alive. When we finish reading a book, be it a fantasy, romance, historical fiction, or otherwise… we should come away wanting to be a part of that character’s world, the good aspects and the bad. If I could, I would like to choose to live in Tolkein’s world, even though Shelob exists in that world and even such things as the Ring of Power. They might be evil, but the characters, the world, and the story have driven themselves into my mind. Just because you write fantasy adventure, doesn’t mean your struggles cant be a part of that fantasy world. A professor of mine once wrote a story about a man in Hell whose Hell was an office building where he hated his boss and getting promoted meant that you just went to a lower level of Hell. I think he might have been writing about his own struggles in academia. Use this pain you are experiencing as a fulcrum to write about pain. Sometimes people need to read about pain to help them understand and experience similar pain in their own lives. But hey, what do I know?


      • Here’s the thing. While suffering and being put through Hell in real life can enhance writing, it does have a limit. I don’t need any more of that to add it into my writing. I’ve got that down pat and am reaching a point where happiness and joy are harder to write. That’s why I think saying negative life experiences are helpful for authors is a dangerous concept because it ignores that the human psyche has limits. Without a break from the punishment, an author will have nothing to write about other than pain and suffering. That isn’t healthy and it doesn’t help someone like me who writes adventures that are solely for entertainment. Evil exists and I know that, but good does too and we seem to put less importance on experiencing that in real life. I’ve spent so long putting a silver lining on my misery for the sake of writing that I’m tired of it. Maybe doing so even kept me suffering for longer than I had to and now I’m trapped. The only thing I know is that I’m tired of life kicking me in the balls and poking me in the eyes whenever I start to stand up again. It’s does nothing for me as an author because it’s not giving me anything that I don’t already have to access.


      • Understood. I hope things do get better for you. Peace brother.


      • Me too. Trying to hold out until things change.
        Peace to you as well.


  5. V.M.Sang says:

    I was just told your site could not be reached. I hope this second attempt works.
    Life gets in the way quite a lot, though. Children take up a lot of time, and as an ex-teacher, I can appreciate how much time you need to do your job. Don’t worry, though. You’ll find the time eventually. Time doesn’t matter, really.
    I can understand your problem with your family thinking of your writing as a hobby. I have the same problem. People think that because it’s only a hobby, they can make demands on your writing time.
    OK. I’m not earning huge amounts of money. Barely enough to count as pocket money, but my writing is important to me, as I’m sure it is for you.
    I am currently reading Legends of Windermere and am thoroughly enjoying it. The plot is gripping and the writing excellent. I love your characters. They are interesting and diverse.
    When I finish, I will certainly post a review.


    • That’s a weird and scary message. At least this comment went through. I’m genuinely tired of life getting in the way. Blocking me from writing for 3/4 of a year is simply insane, especially when you factor in breaks. It is odd that children seem to get blamed for consuming my time though. It’s really the adults that do this to me and seem to not have a great understanding of boundaries. My son can entertain himself if I want to get any writing done, but others just jump into that void.

      I was thinking more about the hobby thing and I get a sense that some see it as less than that now. A hobby can be supported like my puzzles. Some people actively try to stop me from writing because they think it’s downright useless and a waste of time. It was a hobby before I tried to make a career of it, but I failed there and now they see it as a terrible path. It’s frustrating how many people think I should quit.

      Glad you’re enjoying the series. Thank you in advance for the review and I hope you like how the story goes. I’m trying to recapture the lighter tone with my current series since ‘War of Nytefall’ was definitely a bit darker.


  6. Victoria Zigler says:

    The trouble with the “wait until the chaos dies down” approach is that it rarely – if ever – does. I know it’s easier said than done, but you need to force yourself to find a spot of calm amid the storm of life to do the writing. Like I said, I know it’s easier said than done, especially when most people consider it a silly little hobby. But that’s your best chance of getting to write.


    • Yup. The chaos never truly ends. Even the quiet times may only seem so in comparison. Sadly, I’ve spent about 9 months trying to forcefully find a spot of calm. It doesn’t really work because I’m usually dragged into stuff unless I’m too exhausted and sick to function. When that’s the case, I’m not writing either.


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