Top Of The Hill

When we last left Betsy, she was pushing a boulder up a hill, struggling to gain some of the momentum she’d lost over the last few difficult and stressful months. Harry, the white rabbit who is the Guide on her Quest to become a successful independent author, was pointing out yet again that she would not be doing herself any favors if she decided to stop, no matter how hard it was to keep going.

Last week the blog was silent again, but was that a good or a bad sign? Is Betsy still struggling to climb her first hill? Did the boulder roll over her and squash her into the ground like a cartoon character? And has the Muse come back yet? Will she EVER come back?

Let’s see…


*Betsy sits on the ground in the grass and stares off to the horizon* *She pants and wipes sweat from her brow* *Looks down the hill to the ground far below* *Looks over at the boulder she pushed up the hill with such difficulty* *Pants*

You did it! You did it! *Harry hops around her, puffy white tail waggling with glee* You made it to the top of the hill!

*Betsy nods* It was hard.

*Harry settles on the ground beside her* Yes, but you were able to finish the first draft of the novella you were working on back in March when everything changed. You were able to push through and get it done.

*Betsy shrugs and pulls at some grass* There’s still a long way to go before it’s ready. And I don’t know if it’s any good.

*Harry smacks her hand* That doesn’t matter. It doesn’t matter if it’s good or bad at this point. What matters is you finished.

I was kind of blocked on it for a while because of everything that happened. And because I was working on it the morning that…well, you know.

*Harry pats her shoulder* I know.

So it was hard to pick it up again. But I really didn’t have anything else prepared, so I had to go with it.

That was probably a good thing.

*Betsy nods* I guess.

So why are you sitting here? *Harry waves his paws* You need to keep going! You got this stage done, now you have to keep up your momentum and go into editing.

I know. I was just trying to think about what I’ve learned these last two weeks.

*Harry blinks* You learned something?

Don’t be a wise-guy. I can learn things. I can change.

*Harry blinks* You can?

*Betsy frowns* Yes I can! For example, I realized that the reason I wasn’t writing as much as I wanted to was because I wasn’t treating it like work.

Writing isn’t supposed to be work. It’s supposed to be fun.

*Betsy thinks* Is it? Because sometimes it’s not. Fun, I mean. It’s always really, really rewarding and it’s always intense, but it’s not always fun. And see, for the last *mumble mumble* years—

How many years?

Shut up. For the last so many years, I’ve been going to work almost every day at a job working for somebody else. In fact, because I was often working two or three jobs, I would go to work seven days a week. Now, suddenly, I’m not going to work anymore.

*Harry looks confused* Okay.

So I realized I had to treat writing as work. In other words, I had to give it the same respect that I gave to working for other people.

*Harry nods* You had to get into a routine.

Well, yes, but it was more than that. I had to “go to work”. I had to go through the same morning routine that I went through when I was actually going out the door to work. I had to sit down in my office at the same time every day. I had to go to my job every day. Once I started treating it like that, I was able to make progress. But when it was just “something I did”, I couldn’t get there.

“Harry thinks* So you had this thing you love to do, but you didn’t do it effectively until you treated it like a thing you HAVE to do.

I guess.

Humans are strange.

And I learned that I needed to show up in the office every day and work for the time I’d set myself to meet certain objectives I’d set for myself.

That didn’t exactly work this week.

No, but it worked SOME of the week and I’m still learning. I’ll be better next week. Look how I’m actually writing a blog post just like I wanted to do.

*Harry looks out to the blogosphere* *Back to Betsy* Go you!

And there’s more I’m learning. But I figure I’ll be able to write other blog posts about that instead of cramming it all into this one.

*Harry pumps his fists* You are a planning fool!

I know. *Betsy shakes her head* I don’t even know who I am anymore.

Well, I guess you’ll figure it out. Now we’d better get going or all that good work will be for nothing. *Harry gets to his feet* You can’t stop for long or the boulder’s going to get heavy again, no matter how organized you are.

I guess. *Betsy gets to her feet* *Gives the boulder a little push* Where do I go now?

*Harry points*

*Betsy stares* Up there?

*Harry nods*

But that hill is even bigger than this one was!

*Harry shrugs*

I barely made it up here! How am I supposed to get it all the way up to the top of that one!

With a lot of hard work.

And I’ll help.

*Betsy whirls around* Muse! You came back!

*Muse smiles* For now.


To be continued…




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