Enjoying the Between - Jo-Ann Carson

Enjoying the Between



I sent out  two full manuscript requests for Black Cat Blues on Saturday. From the time I came home from New York to the time I hit the send button, I’d been caught up in a feverish frenzy of revisions. Sleeping became almost impossible, because my mind raced with plot ideas. What if… But then… What if… But then… You wouldn’t believe how boring I am at 3 in the morning. So when I finally got to hit the send button euphoria set in.
Yeah, part of me felt like I’d swallowed my innards, like I’d dived head first off a cliff. Maybe, I should have given it one more revision… But  a story is never perfect and at some point you have to let it go. It was time.
Now I’m in the calm after the storm, the between time -, between stories. I used to panic in this quiet interlude thinking I should do more, think more, read more… Be productive.  But not this time. Na uh. I’m loving it.
Simple things are bringing me great joy:  slowly reading and relishing the prose in a book (Simon Toyne’s The Tower), cleaning my  storyboard and saving all the notes in a labelled zip-locked baggy, paying my bills, washing my kitchen floor and talking to PJ. Life is becoming normal again.
I think enjoying The Between is an art developed with practice. What about you? Do you have favorite things you do between big projects?
Hope everyone is enjoying the sunshine.

0 Replies to “Enjoying the Between”

  1. Hi JoAnn, I love to declutter whenever I’m between projects or blocked. Removing all that physical clutter from files, drawers, cupboards and closets creates more space for the creative juices to flow. And I also feel productive.

  2. I get out the house and move; weed the garden, go for walks, enjoying the sunshine. 😉 I still check in with email just in case, but I don’t get involved, look and leave. I love the in-between times. Good post, Jo-Ann. Fingers, toes, and bra straps crossed for your subs.

    1. Joan
      Bra straps! That’s a new one. I love it. Thank you for your well wishes.
      I like your idea of getting outside. I think I need to do that too. Enjoy the last rays of summer.
      And of course I keep checking the dreaded email. You never know what it might bring in.
      Thanks for stopping by and chatting.

  3. Tried to post earlier and couldn’t get on for some reason. Technology in all it’s oddities!
    Anyway, super congrats for sending, Jo-Ann. That’s really very hard. Jerrie wrote a neat piece for our newsletter a couple of years ago about the angst we experience right before pushing send. So double congrats for this.
    “Between” seems to be in a really comfortable place for you. I hope Jerrie posts. She’s a nut case before she starts the next one. LOL
    I strive to not have “between” times. Before I ever completely finish with one book, I start the next one. I started that practice as I got toward the end of the first book. So while it sat and cooked for a bit, I started the next one. Then I went back to do edits and rewrites. I was truly terrified there wasn’t another book in me. This way, I don’t have to wonder. Also, it takes me a long time to edit and rewrite, so this system seems to work for me.
    You inspired me, Jo-Ann. I got off my duff and did one last check of Truth Be Told so I could send it in to MuseItUp Publishing. I kept waiting…for all kinds of reasons, but ultimately I realized I was just scared. So now I’ve the courage up and can’t find the exact email to send it to. We’ve been doing some redo on the bookstore and I think it’s affected the web site. LOL Wouldn’t you know. Anyway, the stuff is ready to go as soon as someone clues me in on the right addy. It’s a very supportive group. Someone will. So thanks for the inspirational kick in the rear.
    Absolutely everything is crossed to bring you great luck with your submissions!

    1. Marsha
      I like your idea of starting a new story before you finish one, and it sounds like it really works well for you.
      I haven’t tried that. I had been trying to write two series, so I would switch back and forth, but I began to feel scattered, so I’m trying to focus on one project at a time now. That being said, one day into The Between and I’m getting antsy to seize on some main ideas and get going. I’m going to try to hold myself back until I’m really sure that’s where I want to go. Meanwhile, ideas are ricocheting in my tiny noggin.
      Congratulations on having another manuscript ready to send. I’m glad you like your publisher and love hearing about how that’s going. Always great to hear from you. Thanks for sharing.

  4. A nut case? Did Marsha call me a nut case? Well, I resemble that statement! The in-between time for me is spent fretting that I’ll never have another original idea. I grouse, whine, curse, and watch the cursor blink. My family, friends (and x-friends) 🙂 consider putting me in a straight jacket. Then an idea forms and I’m off to the races. It’s a horrible time for me.
    Good for you for finishing, editing, and hitting the send button. For me, that final step was always agony. Could I make the story a little stronger?
    Be ready, you’ll open an email soon, and there it will be!!! An offer to publish your book. For a while you’ll feel like Sally Field accepting the Academy Award, “You like me! You really like me.”
    Believe and it will happen!

    1. Jerrie
      My dear nut case friend, I love love love your comment. I feel myself slipping into your Between Angst within hours of having written my upbeat post. I just keep telling myself it will all work out. lol I’m sure this gets easier.
      And thank you for believing that my time will come. Part of me believes it, while another part wonders if it will be in this lifetime.
      I hope you’re enjoying your summer.
      Best Wishes

  5. LOL LOL Always good to laugh during the various stages of our writing business. You just gotta love, Jerrie. She’s so honest! And if she weren’t such a fantastic writer, it wouldn’t make the rest of us nuts when she melts down. LOL
    Now Jo-Ann, cling to that high place that so inspired me. You’ll be fine. As dear friend Jerrie says. Believe. Picture. Visualize that book with your name on it. It’s coming!
    And I did send off my book. So thanks again!

  6. I have not submitted that many manuscripts yet, but this last time I ran away from my computer and went on a trip. Now I approach my emails with trepidation because this could be the day… The stress builds. Your angst is so real. And you had the courage to hit the send button twice!! I’m holding my thumbs for you, Jo-Ann,

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