Summer doldrums

I love summer. I love to garden, and I love going hiking and camping, and I love to sit outside and read. I love it so much that I never get as much writing done as I want/plan. I should know this by now because every summer it’s the same, and yet still I face the fading sunlight with annual trepidation as I realize the year is wrapping up and I still got a TON of words left to write to make my goals.

Cue freak out.

So to get myself back on track, my fall plan is as follows:

1. Reflow the calendar.

I keep a running list of what I’m working on and when I plan to be done. Since summer always destroys my calendar, now’s a good time to bring it up to date. Usually that means all my daily word counts are higher and my slack days are fewer, but that’s the price I pay for slacking off all summer. I write at night so it’s a good thing the nights are getting longer…

2. Get butt in chair, fingers on keyboard.

That’s always part of my plan, of course, but it’s time to rededicate. Working around the day job, I can do 2-3k every night if I don’t dick around. That means disconnecting from the internet, no distracting books sitting on my desk, and no stopping until I’m done. Knowing how I get derailed is half the battle for staying focused. The other half is knowing what I’m going to write, so making sure my pre-writing plot work is done is crucial.

3. Always be moving — and looking — forward.

I get a little sad to see the end of summer, so I try to make sure I have something to energize me even though the sun is lower in the sky. This year, I’m attending a get-together of indie authors, and I recently joined a group of working writers. All these smart, focused, and driven people inspire me by their example. Here’s hoping I can live up to my own expectations.

Meanwhile, here’s a picture of the Oregon coast to remind me why I didn’t make my August writing goals…

Jessa Slade beach

Sigh. I love summer…

How hard are you going to be pushing to meet your year-end goals? Share in comments so we can commiserate together.



About Jessa Slade

Jessa Slade is the author of the Marked Souls urban fantasy romance series (NAL Signet Eclipse), the Steel Born paranormal romance series (Harlequin Nocturne Cravings), and award-winning self-published science fiction romance with Hotter on the Edge. You can find her online at all the usual haunts.

Posted on August 28, 2014, in Auth: Jessa Slade and tagged , , , . Bookmark the permalink. 10 Comments.

  1. Returned from Asa’s feeling inspired and back on track. Though Nancy ran away with the word count crown.


  2. Jessa, In the NW we have to cherish summer, because it’s short!

    Here in the inland, the lakes are already beginning to cool, the days are noticeably shorter, and the calendar just turned which tells me I also need to get butt back in chair. Time to write first, then do all the promo work that comes with expanding my publishing base, or there won’t be any new books to promo!

    All together now, back at it!


  3. I spent Thursday on the coast. Didn’t work that day at all. I certainly understand your dilemma. It is harder to work in the summer. For me, it’s because my house gets too darned hot. No AC, just fans. I got a lot done today and expect great things for the weekend. We’ll see how it works out.


  4. I really needed to read this, Jessa! Now I know not to be too hard on myself. . .. The words will eventually come, and I know it’ll be tough. So far, with the gorgeous weather and lots of distractions, I’m thinking it’s worth it. Ask me in a month if I still believe that! LOL.


  5. Hey Jessa,

    Great post. I too did not meet my planned summer word count. I had too much fun and I picked up a summer cold that took a long time to kick.

    What I love most about your post is how upbeat you are about changing your plans and focusing on what you can do now. I don’t do well with change. Like a great ocean liner, I don’t steer easily on to new paths. Once I figure out my new navigation, I chug along just fine, but that turn is a major undertaking that takes lots of energy and fuel.

    Thanks for reminding me to focus on where I’m heading and how to get there!


    • Dude, all you need is a kraken to turn that slow ship and get back on course at an inspired rate of speed. Now get kraken! (Hah hah. I krak myself up sometimes!) (I just ate a bunch of fruit jellies, hence the sugar rush.)


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