The pandemic is still messing up all my plans and I don’t like it

I thought for a while about what I really wanted to say here, and really, that title sums it all up. After living this way for a year and a half, I thought things would eventually settle into the “new normal” I kept hearing about–some mundane, ritualistic way of life that varied little from day to day, where I’d always know what to expect.

Somehow, that never happened.

At the beginning of the year, I sat down with my planner and chose to be cautious with my intentions for the year, to mindfully select just a handful of things I knew I could realistically get done in the amount of time I had each day, and clear my plate of everything else.

I set just a couple small goals: Publish the last two books in the Snakesblood Saga, and complete and publish the first two books for Spectrum Legacy.

The first of those two things happened. The second might not. Really, at this point, I’ll be doing good to get the first Spectrum book out this year at all. It was supposed to be done before this year started… then it was supposed to be done at the end of January. Then March. Then May. Then June, and needless to say, we’re rapidly approaching the end of July and it’s still not done.

There’s so much left to do, too. Not just writing the first draft, but getting beta feedback, doing revisions based on their feedback, sending it for editing, doing final edits, formatting, proofreading… My goal was to get the first book out in August, and now it may not make it out until November, if it makes it out this year at all.

There are a lot of things that have made it hard to get things done. There were a few weeks lost to not feeling great, health-wise. The kid’s getting bigger, and growing more demanding. Doing virtual schooling kept us tethered to the kitchen table for long, stressful hours that left us both exhausted. My husband’s job changed, and it means he spends a lot more time working, and when he might emerge from his home office–or return from the company office–seems to be different every day. All of it makes it impossible for me to keep a normal writing schedule, and most days end with me being too exhausted to write at all.

With all these setbacks, it’s hard not to be disheartened. And while it’s a lot of little things adding up, there’s one constant: A lot of the things I did to mitigate these obstacles in years past are unavailable during the pandemic. I know the fact I’ve been able to do anything at all this year should feel like an achievement, but more than anything, it’s been an exercise in frustration because I know I should be able to do so much more.

On the plus side, the fact I didn’t set any release dates for Spectrum–or release months, even–I have a lot more room for flexibility, which was a luxury I didn’t give myself when releasing Snakesblood. I know it’ll get done sooner or later, and my cover artist is getting started this week, so that’s exciting. I just really thought I’d have more news to share by this point.

Three books in a year is still good, right?

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