Sustaining the Spinning
It’s been nearly two months since I started work again full time. If I wondered where the hours went during my six months off, I’m now squeezing every second from every hour, or that’s how it feels anyway. I’m realising I can only sustain the many plates I’ve got spinning for so long.
Last weekend I attended Reading Comic Con, the first time I would run a table. I had excellent help, as you’ll see in the picture below, and it was a total success when I take into account my experience and profile (I’m hardly Stan Lee). I met lots of people, made some new friends, received some great feedback and enthusiasm on the stall and sold a few comics. But it took a whole weekend up, and then some, including the setup the night before, the planning, stress, preparing and did I mention stress, that it would all go OK. I’m preparing to do the same for Newport Comic Con in mid-November.
Some people claim they can see Mario in this picture, but it’s simply a trick of the light…
In between that, I’m preparing for the Kickstarter launch of Undetermined Episode #2 – this requires planning, stress, design of backing tiers, marketing, and did I mention stress? I’m also writing a new comic book series based on HP Lovecraft and carrying out research and planning into that.

While getting home from work, then spending a few hours working on scripts, marketing, emails, blogs, etc is OK for a while, how long can it be sustained? How long will it be before I need a break, or a break is enforced upon me because, as usual, I’ve taken too much on?

“How long will it be before I need a break, or a break is enforced upon me because, as usual, I’ve taken too much on?”

The one thing I mustn’t neglect is my personal health (physical and mental), and my friends, family and relationship. Easier said than done when I’m feeling tired, or getting annoyed because a technical job that should take 5 mins takes 2 hours (yes, it even happens to IT people).

There are lots of positives however… My short-story in Twisted50 will be out in time for Christmas. The feedback on episode #2 of Undetermined is good and marketing has started well. The new comic series is looking promising and gathering momentum. I’m attending a writing course to get the novel into a more presentable state end of November. I’m doing some volunteer work with the Brentford Scouts to help them with their Digital Citizenship badge, and we’re restarting the Cyber Security evenings for the neighbourhood with a new idea for a Cyber Safety book in the works.

Finally… An intact plate for my beans on toast…
It’s all about finding the balance between maintaining the momentum, and knowing when it’s time to stop and forget about it all. I think we all do it in our own way, and all stress about it in our own way. I’m lucky I’ve got the support around me to work on all these amazing things. I’m lucky I’ve a job to go to that’s interesting and challenges me to improve and learn every day.

Creating some achievable objectives, ticking them off, allowing for the fact I’ll get tired, playing sports, watching TV, sleeping, enjoying a beer or two and time with the most important people around me sounds like the perfect balance. I’m still learning my way into the life of a writer. I’ll make some mistakes on the way, but I’ll make sure I learn from them. Back to the spinning plates, but right now I’m going to take one down and have my dinner on it.

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