I was working on the “second draft” of my themed short story collection–the quotes are because it’s only technically a second draft, more accurately typing out the hand-written originals with only some editing done as I went–and was happy to see it’s up over 65,000 words now. I think I was shooting for 80,000 initially (the length of a novel, so a couple of websites told me, which I’ve since been corrected on, but that’s another story), so I’ll have to see how close I get to that once everything’s copied over into digital format.
Point being, the original and this… v1.1 draft, all came about from working on the project as I could over the last 19 months (and counting). Now, I grant that there have been plenty of other projects worked on in the mean time–some just via my own natural distraction, some from not being free to work on this collection but wanting to get something creative done so just doing something (anything) else to keep the creative ball rolling, some from shared projects I was invited to by a friend… –but the point remains that, while I would much rather have just plowed through this one project in one concentrated go over a few months, sporadic piecemeal has been the way it’s happened.
And you know what? It still works. The “piecemeal as I get to it” approach is far from ideal but still gets stuff finished if you see it through for long enough.
So don’t despair (and I’ve been plenty guilty of this myself) if you feel aren’t getting as much done on a creative project as you’d like to as fast as you’d like to.
You’ve got to go to work.
You’ve got to take care of your family (and, too easily forgotten: take care of yourself).
You’ve got stuff to do.
All of which can make your efforts at working on a creative project feel like mere drops in a bucket. It will seem at times like you’re not getting anywhere with it.
But don’t let the slow progress get you down. Slow progress is better than no progress at all.
Drops will still fill the bucket.
Your project will still get finished.
Don’t get distracted by how slowly you’re moving forward with your projects.
Just focus on moving forward.