I hate making shopping lists, because I am ADHD. Okay, stop laughing.
It’s like this: I make the shopping list. Then my brain decides I’ve already done the work. Oh, and I’m covered. I can’t forget anything.
So, I promptly forget the shopping list. Go to the store. Wander around disoriented, thinking “I can’t remember a think I meant to get.” Buy some random stuff. Come home. Find shopping list on the counter. Realize I haven’t bought any of it.
Go out again, if I’m lucky this time with the shopping list, buy half the list, get confused. Think of other stuff I need. Go back to list, maybe.
This process results in buying 3x what I meant to buy and if I’m lucky ALSO what I meant to buy.
As opposed to the normal process: Go out, in horror and fear of forgetting what I meant to get. Get into store, grab the things I absolutely need. If there’s extra time, get a couple of other things.
I know this is insane, but it’s how (apparently) I work (or don’t.)
To an extent this extends to books. Not QUITE, because books are different for me, possibly than for any other human being who writes books. I have friends who are “Pantsers” and friends who are “discovery writers.” And of course plotters.
I can plot like nobody’s business. Some of the ultra plot books are even belo– No, I lie. Every book I carefully plotted to the last word up front either never sold or hit the market and SANK like a stone. So, you know, plotting in detail seems to be a good way to write books, provided they aren’t my books.
Mostly because if it’s plotted in detail, my brain thinks it’s done the work, and congratulates itself and goes to sleep. So most of the writing is “fill in stuff and yawn I’m so bored.” At best the books are lifeless.
I’m not a discovery writer, because the books are already fully written in my head. I know exactly what happens. I just don’t “see” the words till I get to that chapter. (I’m aware this sounds insane, but it’s hard to explain.) I do know the plot, and what points hit how, and might get stray words from here and there. Now, sometimes as I’m writing I discover “minor corrections or links” but that’s not the same.
OTOH if I’m sick or very tired I become a discovery writer, meaning I might end up with chunks of three separate books and have to smooth/integrate in post. which is usually doable.
Annoying, but doable.
Anyway, what I didn’t realize is that this mechanism also applied to life. As in real life.
As I’ve said beore, in the beginning of 2020, for the first time, I felt in control enough to make out a publishing plan for the year.
And then…. we know how that went, mostly because I was watching in horror as the world went crazy, but being under house arrest and high altitude didn’t help.
2021 was when we realized we had to move, and finding a house, moving…. well, we won’t even be mostly unpacked by Christmas, and I doubt the house will be sold (Long story.)
So it’s come to this. I’m making absolutely no fixed plans for 2022. I have a general list of what I need to write in my head, and I’m going to run at it, in terror and panic to get it all finished.
With luck, it might work.