Thursday Words

The Grindset

Hello friends and welcome to another laidback edition of Just Another Struggling Writer. I’m just another struggling writer.

Friends, I am still in the throes of the New-Year mindset. Every morning when I wake up I think about all the things I want to accomplish for the day. Many of the tasks I put on my to do list are stepping stones along the path toward the larger goal, like writing 500-1000 words every day so I can finish Daughters of Necessity on schedule. That, in turn, feeds into the ultimate goal, which is, as I have said and will continue to repeat until it manifests, becoming a full time writer.

I feel like I’ve done pretty good so far this year (less than two weeks in, I know). I’ve blogged now for twelve days straight, I’ve written at least some words every day, and I’ve carved out time to read.

But there is still so much more I want to do. I want to rejuvenate my Patreon. I want to launch a Redbubble page. I want to dip my toes into podcasting (yes, still). I want to be active and friendly in the writing community. I want to return to freelance romance writing.

So much to do, yet so little time. Often times I find myself wistfully thinking that I’m not working hard enough. There are hours in my day when I can squeeze in more work. I see plenty of other people doing it. So why can’t I?

Everyday I’m Hustling

Well, here’s the thing. I recently had to take a break from freelancing because I was very seriously behind on a manuscript and just as seriously mentally blocked about it. Every time I opened the document to work on it, I would get so stressed out I could barely get a few sentences out before I was exhausted. My editor was great in allowing me to take time away and hopefully come back to it later, and since then I’ve been focusing on trying to enjoy my creative process again.

Part of the reason I fell behind, and the biggest reason why I was so damned stressed about it, was because there just wasn’t enough time over the course of the holiday season to give the piece any more than a cursory glance most days. Winter is my busy season at my day job, plus there were school functions for my kids, family in town, Christmas shopping to do, funky custody exchanges.

Most days by the time I got home I just wanted to relax. Watch a basketball game, or a true crime documentary. Take a bath or hit the sheets early. Then, I had to get up and do it all over again. On the days when I forced myself to use my evening hours to work, I was miserable in the days (yes, multiple) that followed. Without time to play video games or veg out, I became even more depressed than I usually get this time of year (thanks SAD).

I sometimes think this means I’m just a naturally lazy person. I’ve beaten myself up more times than I can count. Plenty of people in this industry are working a job (or more than one), going to school, raising a family, or any combination thereof and still find time to forge a successful writing career. So, then, I “reasoned,” what does it say about me that I can’t go a few nights a week without TV or video games or extra sleep?

Type What Personality?

Are you starting to see a pattern here? Far too often, I am holding myself up to someone else’s standard.

It occurred to me that maybe there are people out there, perhaps those I am trying to emulate, that get emotional satisfaction from always being on the go or juggling multiple projects. Maybe they go to bed after a long work day and look back on what they accomplished with joy. Maybe they can reward themselves with a bottle of champagne or a weekend away or a club night with friends, and that is enough to rejuvenate them to do it all again.

And if that is a personality type that some people are just born with, well… I’m one of them. I often want to be, but I’m just not. I’m not bored when I go home and have nothing to work on. I’m not stimulated by new challenges or changes to routine.

Does that make me lazy? I don’t know. I hope not. Does it mean I lack ambition? I don’t think so, I’ve got plenty of goals I want to meet. Does it mean I don’t have what it takes to be a writer? Certainly not.

I think what it really means is that if I stop trying to be someone I’m just not for a change, and actually accept that my own pace is what it is for a reason, then maybe I’ll actually start getting somewhere. I mean, who knows what I am capable if only I just start spending the mental energy I have been using to berate myself for not working hard enough instead on writing and creating and growing.

I want to find out, though. I want to find out what my real potential is, not just what I invented for myself based on a metric that is incompatible with who I am and who I am meant to be.

I am not broken after all.


Yall, I don’t think I can stress this enough, I am having fun writing again. I didn’t realize how much weight I had put on myself with the constant churn of deadlines and output, but I am really grateful that I have this opportunity to find my way again. I can’t wait to talk about craft again. Maybe next week. Until then, may your writing be plenty and your struggles be few.

Kerry Share

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Monday Motivations

Monday Motivations; Ace of Cups

Hello friends and welcome to another wet and wintry week of writing.

You find me today in somewhat of a limbo. Due to ~reasons~ my most recent romance manuscript is on hold pending instructions from my editor. After struggling all month it feels like with illness both physical and mental, I finally emerged from the haze of emotional exhaustion and realized with perfect clarity that my due date would not be met.

I don’t like being that person. I pride myself on my work ethic, but even more than that my punctuality. I know that these sorts of extensions (and possible postponements) happen all the time in publishing, but after eight novella manuscripts turned in on time, I hoped I would manage to avoid it. Alas. Strep throat (twice) and a depressive episode collaborated to ensure that I swallowed that point of pride.

So, here I am, waiting on guidance for the next steps and trying to use this moment (however brief it might turn out to be) to, well, first relax, but also reflect on just how lucky I am to get to do this whole writing thing (semi) professionally.

I will admit I’ve gotten a bit complacent with my arrangement. More than eighteen months in, some of the shine was worn off. I’ve forgotten just how truly awesome (in both modern and original senses of the word) it is that stories I wrote are out there in the world for people to read and hopefully enjoy.

Yes, it is a lot of hard work. Yes, there are times when I come home after a long day at the day job and extra curriculars and the only thing I want to do is get in bed or veg in front of the TV instead of write. Yes, there are times when I get so frustrated because the words aren’t coming and I just wasted two precious hours staring at a blinking cursor.

But it is also an incredible privilege. One that I’ve likely been taking for granted of late.

So while I have a moment to do so, I choose to reflect upon this opportunity with gratitude. I am so fortunate that I get to call myself a (semi) professional writer. I am blessed that I get to advance my craft in such a practical way. I am lucky beyond all comprehension that I get to share my words with you all.

And that’s my motivation this week.

Kerry Share

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Monday Motivations

Monday Motivations; Nine of Wands

Hello friends and welcome to another worn out week of writing.

Do ever get tired of being strong? Do ever wish people would stop admiring your resilience? Do you ever feel like the trials life, the universe, or your favored deity throw at you are not a compliment to your fortitude and toughness, but just another mountain to haul your weary bones over? Do you ever wonder if it will ever pay off? Even just slightly? Just long enough to recharge your batteries?

Friends, it’s one of those days.

Actually it’s been one of those years, but it all feels like it’s coming to a head.


Lately I feel like all I do is work. I have my full time day job, plus a gig as a parent of three, often times a manuscript on deadline, any personal writing I want to do, and now an additional time consuming endeavor. I feel like every minute of my day is spoken for, from six am when my alarm goes off til midnight when I finally close my laptop. And achingly little of that time I am free to use to unclench, and even less that pays off in the way I need it to: financially.

And I know that’s tacky to say about something that is supposedly my passion, but writing is hard, y’all. Writing is work. If I were a full time writer I would 100% say every day that I love my job. But writing would still be a job.

I’ve seen dividends from this second job of mine, to be sure. And I have heard more times than I can count that if I just stay the course, I’ll see all this hard work pay off in more ways than one. But the truth of the matter is, in a creative and notoriously difficult industry to break into like writing, having one’s efforts rewarded is more like luck of the draw than guarantee.

And I’m tired. I am tired of working sixty hours a week with minimal pay off. I am tired of calculating how many words I’ll have to write tomorrow because I have to take my kid to the doctor today. I am exhausted of feeling guilty when I spend a few hours playing a video game with my partner. I am beyond frustrated that I lay down to take a nap, or catch a few hours of sleep because I can’t wrack my brain any longer just to wake up feeling worse.

Mostly, I am tired of being assured that it’s all worth it by people who know better.


And yet.

And yet.

I’m going to carry on anyway. Because, otherwise, what’s the point?


Kerry Share

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Monday Motivations

Monday Motivations; Ace of Pentacles

Hello friends and welcome to another winning week of writing.

Friends, I’m not going to lie. I’m feeling on the weary side this gloomy, rainy Monday morning. Last week was an abject failure thanks to a big day job meeting that totally wore me out and a bout of colds that ran through my house that culminated in my daughter coming down with strep throat. My routine was completely decimated and writing was a hopeless endeavor.

Piling on to that let down is the fact that I am undertaking a brand new (non-writing related) venture starting today that is certain to demand a sizable chunk of my limited free time. Why did I sign up for something like that, you might ask, knowing that I already have difficulty balancing all the projects and obligations I already have?

Friends. I truly do not know.

Alas, this new thing is not something I can easily back out of, nor do I even want to. To me, it is as important and necessary as going to work and paying rent. So, it is what it is. I’m just going to have to make it work.

Just like the manuscript I am under contract for, due in three weeks. I agreed to the terms, knowing what it meant for my schedule. It doesn’t change just because I had a rough few days. The only thing that shifts is how much I have to do every day from here on out to play catch up.

On days like today, it’s important for me to remind myself that I chose these obligations. Writing professionally and this new endeavor are important parts to the whole future I am trying to build. It isn’t like they were foisted on me. Will they be stressful? Certainly? Will it be worth it?

Only if I keep up my end of the bargain. And that’s my motivation this week.

Kerry Share

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Thursday Words

Deadline Withdrawal

Hello friends and welcome to another bass ackwards edition of Just Another Struggling Writer. I’m just another struggling writer.

Friends, I’ll admit I’ve been feeling a bit out of sorts of late. Very tired, but also restless. Bored, but also completely lacking in energy. As a person who is regularly depressed, this feeling is not totally unknown to me, but I did not think – for once – an accident of brain chemistry was at fault for my present malaise. 

After a great deal of pondering, it occurred to me that the reason I was feeling so discombobulated was because I no longer have anything pressing to work on. Of course, I have my personal fantasy projects I could be writing, but, honestly… I haven’t really felt motivated to tackle any of those ideas, even my current WIP, Pieces of Eight. 

The question this led me to ask was: why is it easier to write romance, a genre I am admittedly less versed in and certainly less passionate about, than the fantasy ideas I’ve had brewing for a decade or more? Why is it that I’ve written hundreds of thousands of words for pitches I came up with in about two weeks, but can’t string 90k together for an epic fantasy I’ve been building since 2015? 

Well, friends, I’ve cracked the case. 

It’s the deadline.

I don’t know what it is, I don’t know why my own personal dreams and desires aren’t enough to motivate me the way the expectations of others can, but for some reason I just work really, really, actually kind of phenomenally well under pressure, specifically time pressure, even more specifically external time pressure. 

Without that pressure, I honestly feel kind of adrift. When I’m not under a firm deadline, more than just leaving the option to procrastinate under my own discretion, I actually feel sort of useless. Lost. Worst of all, giving myself a deadline doesn’t seem to have the same effect as someone else giving me one. Its too easy to ignore, or make excuses for missing. 

Which then begs the question: how do I simulate external pressure that I cannot easily blow off? 

As much as I’d love that answer to come from within myself, uh, that hasn’t worked. So, my accountability partner on Twitter came up with a solution: get my kids involved. 

In short: promise them something fun and exciting, but only if I am able to meet a writing goal by a specific time. That way they can pester me when they see me loafing and it’ll actually feel motivating, because I certainly don’t want to let my babies down (even if I don’t really want to go the trampoline park).

Would I prefer that I not need to stoop to such tactics? Sure, of course. But something I have come to realize (even if I’m not sure I’ve accepted it) is that when you’re working, raising a family, keeping a house, maintaining a relationship, and writing, finding the time, energy, and reason to write can be thoroughly exhausting – even before you’ve had a chance to open your laptop (or, if you’re like me, notebook). Sometimes, we’ve gotta take whatever works and roll with it. 

And off I go.


Okay, so here’s the thing. I actually wrote all that last week, and that got overwhelmed with other stuff and didn’t end up posting it. Since then, I have actually learned that my most recent (last minute) pitch I submitted to my editor has been accepted and I’m once again under contract for another romance novella due next month. 

Up until yesterday when I got that email, I had been laboring under the aforementioned funk. Struggling to be productive and prioritize my time wisely. My anxiety dial was on eleven and even with the deal with my kids in place, I had trouble focusing on my work. 

Today, knowing I have five weeks to churn out another novella, I woke up energized and excited. If ever my deadline withdrawal was in doubt, this sequence of events proved it. 

I just work better under pressure. 


Hey its been a minute since I reminded yall that my first romance novella release, The Dutiful and the Disfavored, is available now on my Patreon for just $0.99. If you’re a fan of regency romance, know someone who is, or just want to support indie creators, please consider checking out my page. 

The Dutiful and the Disfavored

That’s all from me this time. I’ve got some new ideas brewing, though now that I’m under contract and under pain of child disappointment, they may have to wait until the new year. I can’t wait. Until next time friends, may your writing be plenty and your struggles be few. 

Kerry Share

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Monday Motivations

Monday Motivations; Knight of Cups

Help friends and welcome to another wolfish week of writing.

Friends, I am back after yet another unexpected week off thanks to yet another of my children coming down with appendicitis. For those keeping track at home, that’s two in two months.

Fortunately, everything went well and I am back to the grind. Best of all I was able to use some of the down time to at last finish the romance novella that had been giving me fits for the last five weeks. I’m hoping I can squeeze one last pitch in before the cut off but if not then that is a wrap on romance writing for the year.

Which puts me in the position to, for the first time in months, focus on my fantasy writing for a while.

I’d be lying if I said I wasn’t of two minds about this prospect. Romance writing is what helps pay the bills after all and with Christmas right around the corner, it sure would be nice to have some padding in the bank account.

On the other hand, fantasy is where my heart is at. I can scarcely pick up a book, watch a tv show or movie, or play a video game even tangentially related to a fantasy setting without getting inundated with dozens of new ideas for stories. So, having a few months break to really focus on a fantasy draft should be exciting.

If I can finish, that is.

Because that’s always the rub, isn’t it? I have too many ideas in my head to properly keep track of but not enough time, focus, energy, or some combination of the three to actually bring those ideas into existence.

So, while it sound like fun to take these next few months to blow off writing in the interest of recharging my batteries before romance pitching opens up again, I think it’s actually more important than ever to really focus on finishing up this cozy fantasy draft. At 900 words a day, less than the output I strive for when I’m under contract for my novellas, I can knock this sucker out by New Year’s. And wouldn’t that be something?


Until next time, friends!

Kerry Share

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Monday Motivations

Monday Motivations; Five of Pentacles

Hello friends and welcome to another wrangled week of writing.

It’s officially back to real life this week and I would be lying if I said I didn’t miss the routine. While I fervently wish writing could be my routine, it’s not and so I have to make hay with the one I’ve got.

Unfortunately, I have once again found myself in a pinch time wise. I’d like to make some sort of great excuse here about why I wasn’t able to write very much over the last month, but I can’t. The simple truth is I procrastinated. And now I’m in a hole.

At least the hole is familiar. Familiar enough that I’m not quite panicking (yet), though we’ll see how I feel after I’ve pulled three all nighters in a row to make deadline.

I’d also like to say that I’ll do better next time, but it seems like that too is destined to be a lie. So instead I’m just gonna be honest with myself: while it would be nice if I could make it a habit to write every day, so I’m not frequently putting myself in such a bind come deadline times, I recognize that am largely a binge writer.

I’ll try to get better. (Seriously.)

Kerry Share


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Thursday Words

A Lot of Balls

Hello friends and welcome to another juggling edition of Just Another Struggling Writer. I’m just another struggling writer. 

For the last eight days, I have been at home on my last staycation of the year before my day job launches into its busy season. I would like to say that I got a whole mess of writing done and my latest manuscript is ahead of schedule and everything is fabulous and wonderful. But, uh. That would be a lie. 

Actually, I did what I probably needed to do and for the first three or four days I did pretty much nothing else but sleep and otherwise relax. Still, I’m not super worried. Part of me has actually come to accept that, at my core, I am a binge writer, and trying to write every day just doesn’t work for me. I’d like it to. I’m going to try to get better about that, but I’m not going to overly stress myself out about it either. 

Me, circa one week ago.

That being said, now that I am well rested and bursting with creative energy, I’ve been wondering whether or not I have enough writing projects on my plate at the moment. 

Yes, you read that right. I am looking for more things to do. 

Ever since I launched my Drabble Rock projects earlier this summer, I have found that I am far more fulfilled creatively than I was just working on one manuscript or fantasy project at a time. While finding the time to manage all of my wild ideas is an ongoing project in and of itself, I find that when I sit down with my planner to map out my day I’m more excited to have a variety of writing related activities on my to-do list. 

So, I’ve decided that I’m going to add a worldbuilding task to my daily endeavors. As some of you may know, I hate worldbuilding. However, I have come to recognize that my chronic avoidance of it is why my fantasy projects tend to stall out so quickly. Worldbuilding, to me, isn’t sexy like drafting (or editing *drool*), but it is necessary BEFORE I launch into a project. 

This is in addition to writing romance for Scribd, Drabble Rock, blogging, producing Patreon content, and drafting an already in-progress fantasy manuscript.

Piece of cake.

Alright, so lets be real, there simply aren’t enough hours in the day to maintain all those projects and expect to have a life outside of writing.

(Who needs that? Wonders Dark Me.)

And, sure, I imagine that I’ll get really tired of the grind some days and will need to take mental breaks from writing from time to time. That’s fine. But for right now, the idea of having so many moving parts, so many possible outlets, so many avenues to Being a Writer™ to explore… its energizing to me.

I’ve talked before about my desire to be prolific. To have millions of words to my name and dozens upon dozens of titles. I’m not going to achieve that taking it one story at a time.

Call me impatient, call me overly ambitious. I’m all that and more.

Lets just say, I’ve got balls.


Pearl is young, single, and completely uninterested in the trappings of marriage. Not that her father cares about her personal preferences. When Pearl is married off in what is meant to be none other than a good business deal between families, she decides she will have nothing to do with her intended husband. Or so she thinks.

Kind-hearted Thomas is more welcoming to the thought of a marriage partner than his betrothed, but such a gentle soul would never dare to overstep Pearl’s boundaries. With a partner so intent on keeping him at arm’s length, how can he convince his new wife that he truly loves her?

Pearl and Thomas are forced to get to know each other in the most unfortunate of situations: an arranged marriage unwanted by both of them. Will their families’ meddling come between the blossoming of what looks like an actual romance?

The Dutiful and the Disfavored, a Regency Romance, is available now on my Patreon, with pledges starting at just $1.00. Click here to find out more!


Well friends, that is just about everything I have for you this week. If you like my content, please consider subscribing to my Patreon, or making a donation to my Ko-Fi. Every little bit of support, monetary or moral, is sincerely felt and appreciated! And, as always, may your writing be plenty and your struggles be few.

Kerry Share

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Monday Motivations

Monday Motivations; Seven of Pentacles

Hello friends and welcome to another working week of writing.

Well, I am now in the back half of my final vacation of the year, and when I set out on these day-job free days I had intended to do a lot of writing so I could wrap up my current freelance contract ahead of schedule for a change instead of leaving it to the last minute.

Uh, yeah, that hasn’t happened thus far. Instead, I just… relaxed. And, you know, I actually think that was probably a smart thing. I think I really needed to detach for a little bit. I slept a lot, I played video games, I watched TV and just generally hung out. I’m confident that in doing so, I staved off some encroaching burnout.

However, now I really need to get back to business. My manuscript is due in ten days and I’ve got to do some serious drafting during this week to make sure I’m not crunching (as bad anyway) as I was last time.

But as I settle into my recliner (where I do most of my writing while at home) with a soda and some not-distracting TV on for background noise, I feel completely at ease. This is far and away the easiest routine I have ever settled into, because I genuinely do feel like this is what I’m meant to be doing. Tackling steep word counts, blogging, maintaining both public and private projects. Writing as work. Working as a writer.

And one day, I will be doing it full time. Of that I am determined.


Friendly reminder that my Patreon for my romance novellas is now live, and the first release, a Regency Era story titled The Dutiful and the Disfavored is available now! Please consider becoming a Patron, or sharing my page with anyone you know who might be interested in short but sweet romance stories from an indie creator. It would mean all the world to me.

The Dutiful and the Disfavored, by Kerry Share

Kerry Share

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Shameless Self-Promotion: Patreon Launch

Friends, it has been a long, insightful and at times grueling eighteen months since I first started writing for Scribd. I went from not believing my work would even be good enough for publication, to worrying that I was going to burn myself out in a few short months, to actively pitching new ideas before my current contracts have been fulfilled.

To say I never imagined I would end up here, proudly presenting my novellas to the world at large is a huge understatement. When I started this endeavor, my anxiety was so severe I didn’t even tell my partner what I was up to until I was already neck deep in the first manuscript. The rest of my family? Months.

Which is not to say I’m not nervous now. Of course I am. While I am hardly depending on the success of this Patreon for financial or creative support, I, of course, would love to see it thrive.

On the other hand, there’s a reason I never seriously looked into self-pubbing. I know I don’t have the knowledge, energy, or funds to pull it off. So, if I screw this up, well, at least I didn’t lose anything in the process.

Anyway, that’s a very long winded way of saying the first of my romance novellas is now available on my Patreon. While my heart lies with fantasy, these stories are very near and dear to my heart. If romance is your bag and you’re a fan of my work (as a blogger or as a writer), it would mean a lot to me if you would consider becoming a Patron. If you’re not interested yourself, a share of my page to someone who might like my work would also go a long way. If Patronage is not in your budget, but you still would like to take a look at my novellas, send me a private message and I’ll be happy to forward you the epub, free of charge.


This month’s release is out now!

TITLE: The Dutiful and the Disfavored

SUBGENRE: Historical (Regency)

LENGTH: 126 pages

HEAT LEVEL: Sweet

BLURB:

Pearl is young, single, and completely uninterested in the trappings of marriage. Not that her father cares about her personal preferences. When Pearl is married off in what is meant to be none other than a good business deal between families, she decides she will have nothing to do with her intended husband. Or so she thinks.

Kind-hearted Thomas is more welcoming to the thought of a marriage partner than his betrothed, but such a gentle soul would never dare to overstep Pearl’s boundaries. With a partner so intent on keeping him at arm’s length, how can he convince his new wife that he truly loves her?

Pearl and Thomas are forced to get to know each other in the most unfortunate of situations: an arranged marriage unwanted by both of them. Will their families’ meddling come between the blossoming of what looks like an actual romance?

Become a Patron today!