It's been a struggle of late, getting words on paper. Part of me is still panting and heaving, celebrating in disbelief that I actually finished a novel. Of course that was months ago now, and the novel is mostly terrible. I've put it away, and think of it at times. I wasn't passionate about the story it became, and I think that's pretty evident in the writing. But it was a valuable exercise. I did it. I edited it. I queried, I submitted. I received rejections. The circle is complete (or is that supposed to end with publication?) In this case, I don't feel too sad about that... I don't think it's the story I was meant to tell.
Which has led me to dabble in lots of other things, jot down lots of other ideas, trying to figure out what to do next. I'm 80% done with the anthology I've been building. I'm not sure what to do with that when it's done, so I'm not in much of a hurry. I have decided that submitting a few of the stories I like best for publication in journals wouldn't be a bad thing. A "real" publisher might not want to publish an anthology that includes previously published work, but since I will most likely self-publish it, I think that might add a bit of credibility since otherwise I'm a fairly green author.
In the meantime, I've been thinking lots about what I might be "meant" to write. There are two stories that I land on every time I ponder in this direction. One is a book I've been building mentally for years. Like five years or more. The other is based on my own family and is a much younger idea. I think I'll eventually write them both, but for now I've really begun to focus on the former. I've written parts of it before over the years, but this time I've actually outlined it. Developed character arcs, thought about the structure and technique I want to employ. I'm going to try to do it right this time. And I got up early this morning to draft the first scene.
I'm now 816 words in. Wish me luck.