Writer. Adventurer. Currently working on The Dreamless City, a series of steampunk novels and short stories.

Shot at the Night

This might best describe my early morning and late night ramblings, er, I mean writings. These are probably the best times for me to write without my inner editor present. I should really try to write more during these times, but damn I get tired and need to sleep. xD

Six hours of sleep keeps me sane. I’m not going to apologize for it. If it was ten hours per night, then I’d think about freeing up some of that time.

Sleeping isn’t one of those things I enjoy doing. I know some people who love to sleep all day. While I might occasionally sleep in until 8:00 or 8:30 (I know, that’s crazy talk with a two-year-old in the house), I’ve never been the sleep until noon type. There’s waaaay more fun stuff to do than roll over and fall back asleep.

And in the evenings? Gah, I almost don’t want to talk about it. I get angry when I start to fall asleep on the couch with my laptop (or worse yet, when I was watching one of my shows like Person of Interest or Boardwalk Empire). I hate going to bed. Brushing my teeth is punishment akin to death. My poor dog Reno asks to be put up so he doesn’t have to endure the sight of me raging with grumpiness.

I think what I am trying to say with all of this is that I’m searching for more writing time opportunities, but I’m not having much luck yet. Any suggestions?

ROW80 Goal Update

1. Short story almost ready to be submitted to readers for last minute hack-and-slash, um, editing and review. Would love to have this done tomorrow or Friday at the latest.
2. Words written: 3000. I wrote 12 pages longhand, and I’m averaging 250 words per page.  Yeah, I often write longhand when I am working through a tough scene, or when I am having trouble unplugging.  Not much trouble to get into when it is just you, a blue pen, and a legal pad.  (Sure, you could play hangman with yourself, but how fair is that really?)


See, this is what my scribbles look like.  It’s not pretty, but the first draft of anything never is.  ;)

Shot at the Night

And because I <3 my music, and I <3 The Killers, I thought this would be appropriate.

5 comments on “Shot at the Night

  1. H L Fatnassi
    October 9, 2013

    I’ve been learning (against my will sometimes) that consistency is better than amount. When I fall consistently short in making time for art or writing, I find it’s because I’ve put too many expectations on myself. Maybe doing the counter-intuitive thing of cutting down on the amount of time you give yourself to write and instead make it consistent?

    I was really overwhelmed with my dissertation for a while, because, well, it’s a rather huge endeavor. And we both know it’s not the only thing I do with my time (granted, I don’t have a tyke running around.) I kept trying to butt-in-seat every day for 3-6 hours and failing miserably. It was only when I cut down to 30 minutes a day (I do more than that on my dissertation now) that I began to get anywhere.

    In any case, not sure if my writing issues are of any use to you but I figured I’d share how I worked my way out of the problem. Getting less sleep was also not an option for me.

    • tracycembor
      October 10, 2013

      I think you are totally right that cutting down the amount of time and knowing that I have to perform during that time works. Even though my lunch is less than an hour, once you figure in escaping the office and finding food, I still manage to be productive. Even one page handwritten moves my stories forward bit by bit.

      In the morning or evenings, when I do tell myself “just 30 minutes,” I find writing for an hour easy to do. If I tell myself “you have an hour of freetime, don’t waste it,” then I fritter it away playing hangman. ;)

      I’m soooo glad that I’m not writing a dissertation. That’s like writing a book, but hardly any fun. Good luck!! :D

      • Heather Lee Mills
        October 10, 2013

        Dissertations are exactly like writing a book. The expectation within the university is that the dissertation will be turned into a book, so readers basically look at is as a finished rough draft of the academic’s to-be-published treatise.

        And like writing fiction novels, you invent worlds that you spend pages convincing the reader are true. Except the worlds are hardly any fun and typically don’t feature airships, dragons, or handsome elves (my favorite!). The best you can hope for is a witty quote from a dead European man. ;)

  2. mrschmoe
    October 10, 2013

    As others had said, let the pieces fall into place. Easier said than done. Also friend of mine had once hinted for me not to plan out too much on my WIP. Sometimes a short story will morph into a series or a trilogy. Hitting a brick wall is a bitch.

    Anyways I often waste my time explaining the basic premise and concise background on my characters. Of which it drains my energy from writing. Trust me, it’s friggin irritating and infuriating. Not to mention repeating same thing over and over again. I will only explain the bit of details of my WIP only once. But add in something that I never mentioned well that pisses me off.

    Oh yeah the downside of explaining bits of one’s WIP. It flushes out the stored thoughts and energy. Leaving you nothing, just the sounds of crickets, or someone farting from the other side of town. The reason why, I don’t like a humongous outline. It drains your urge to write.

    The way I see it, create a concise outline, or write from the seat of your pants. That’s my two cents. Unfortunately I have no suggestions to offer, sorry about that.

  3. alberta
    October 11, 2013

    I too only do minimal planning – I have terndency to expect too much from self – have found it better to say I’ll write for a set period than to say I have hours to write in – hours slip by as you say playing hangman (haven’t played that for decades:) -the comment about short stories morphing brought smile – thats exactly how my series kicked off – short story – now writing the 4th!

    Dont cut down your sleep anymore theres a lot of eveidence that lack of sufficient sleep harms all kinds of parts of body including heart – its repair time for body as well as mind – all the best with goals:)

Comments are closed.


This entry was posted on October 9, 2013 by in Uncategorized and tagged , , , , , , .

Posting Schedule for 2014-15

Monday through Friday I will be posting about writing as business and craft, the science of creativity, all things steampunk, and progress on The Dreamless City.

Weekends are reserved for my Music Playlist.

Writers of the Future Honorable Mention

About the Author

Tracy Cembor attempts to juggle a preschooler and a baby, a full-time job, random geekery, and the writing life. Currently working on The Dreamless City, a steampunk urban fantasy novel. Come join the adventure.
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