January 15th, 2016

editing

Current projects, January 2016.

Every month I make a post to tell folks what I'm working on, a) because it seems polite, b) because it keeps me accountable, if only to myself, and c) so you will understand why I do not have a social life. This is the January 2016 post. I am already making posts for 2016. This is faintly awesome and faintly horrifying, all at the same time. Hooray for contradictions!

To quote myself, being too harried to say something new: "These posts are labeled with the month and year, in case somebody eventually gets the bizarre urge to timeline my work cycles (it'll probably be me). Behold the proof that I don't actually sleep; I just whimper and keep writing."

Please note that all books currently in print are off the list, as are those that have been turned in but not yet printed (Chaos Choreography, Every Heart a Doorway, Feedback). Once Broken Faith, The Nativity of Chance, and Magic For Nothing are off the list because they're finished and in revisions with the Machete Squad. The cut-tag is here to stay, because no matter what I do, it seems like this list just keeps on getting longer. But that's okay, because at least it means I'm never actively bored. I have horror movies and terrible things from the swamp to keep me company.

Not everything on this list has been sold. I will not discuss the sale status of anything which has not been publicly announced. If you can't remember whether I've announced something, check the relevant tag, or go to my website, at www.seananmcguire.com. Please do not ask why project X is no longer on the list. I will not answer you.

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knives

Two years on my own; let's look at the time.

Today is January 15th, 2016. My last day of full-time employment for someone other than myself was January 15th, 2014. The last time I set an alarm for anything other than a trip to the airport or a convention was two years ago.

Two years. Where does the time go?

Two years ago today, I came home from work and crawled pretty much directly into bed. I wanted to be overjoyed. I wanted to be elated. I wanted to feel like I was free at last, finally free to write all the books I wanted to write and see all the places I wanted to see. Instead, I went straight to bed. I stayed there for about three weeks.

That sort of marathon of sleep usually indicates depression, at least for me. Not then. That was the sleep of being broken, of trying to fix myself. This last weekend Brooke said to me, sincerely, that my job--which had been a reasonable desk job, with reasonable people--had been killing me, and she wasn't wrong. I needed to either stop writing or stop working, and since there was no chance I was going to stop writing, I needed to stop working for someone other than myself. Or I was going to die.

(This is not hyperbole. I was sick constantly. I was stressed to the point of panic constantly, trying to figure out how to get enough money to let me quit so I could stop working all the time and actually get some sleep. I was miserable constantly. If my body hadn't broken and killed me, the thin line in my brain over which I usually manage not to step would have shifted, and I would have done something stupid.)

It's been two years of self-employment. I'm still learning. Budgets aren't easy, either of time or money. I'm still figuring things out. But I'm still moving, and I'm still not bored.

Saying "I quit" was the smartest thing I ever did.