At night, when all is quiet, my thoughts are louder than ever. The thoughts, like little ladies, sip tea from porcelain cups, and gossip. They chat about the novel I am writing, and how the characters don’t come out the way I planned them too. They talk about how I could change this, but one lady thought always yelps: “As long as it doesn’t affect the storyline.” And then there are those thoughts, who, while nibbling on invisible biscuits, think I should have stuck closer to my original novel. They all have an opinion, and I just sit, quietly in the corner, listening… and I watch my tea go cold. The old dears talk about what to do next. What to do for editing, how to get my work published. Do I want a publisher? Could I get a publisher? Do I want to self publish? Get an Indie Publisher? I don’t know. I honestly don’t, but the thoughts talk about it… a lot!
“And then there is marketing,” one thought says primly. She just had her hair done and feels quite stylish and important, so her opinion must be heard. “One must do marketing.” But I don’t understand marketing at all. “Have you managed to get the hang of this Twitter thing, yet?” All I can do is shake my head. I’ll get the hang of it… tomorrow. Always tomorrow.
“Have we made an author page yet?” someone yells across the table. There is much shaking of heads.
“No, I thought we decided to wait until we are closer to publishing Coyote,” says the prim thought who brought up marketing in the first place. “It feels too soon now. But it doesn’t hurt to think about it.”
“But the way we are now, we are practically invisible,” calls the thought from across the table again. There is sadness in the eyes of the thoughts. Yes, we all do feel a bit invisible.
“We’re not completely invisible,” says a more confident thought. “We have the website.”
“Which no one reads,” mutters a depressing thought with greasy unkempt hair and dirty clothing. The other thoughts pull a face.
“And there is facebook,” the confident thought says.
“Please, people barely read your free story there. Don’t count on facebook.” Some of the thoughts agree with the depressing thought, but some don’t.
“Don’t underestimate Facebook,” the confident thought says. “And we have quite a few books out on Amazon.”
“Anthologies, where we conveniently hide between a whole bunch of other writers,” the depressing thought says, and she leans forward to look the confident thought in the eye. “We’re practically invisible.”
“Well, let’s change that then.” The others nod. Yes, it is time for change, they all feel it. But they are all as scared as I am. Because change is scary. “Let’s take inventory,” says the confident thought.
“How are we doing on the erotic story, we wrote?” asks another thought, who wants to be heard also.
“We gave that to someone for a spit polish. To attack her bad grammar and punctuation.” The last part is whispered through the corner of her mouth, while she points at me with her thumb. Yes, there is that, the writing, the grammar, the punctuation, the style… still working on that. Give me time.
“You know?” a snooty thought says, “Other people are much further than we are. I see people produce things at lightning speed.” I put my head between my hands and groan.
“We need to take it slower,” one of the softer thoughts says, she leans over to rub me on the back. “If we want to do this right, we must be patient.”
“Yes, or they are all going to laugh at our work,” a timid insecure thought squeaks. The other thoughts nod. Yes, they all fear that… they all fear not being good enough.
“So what are we working on?”
“There’s the Coyote novella. We are quite far with that.” A thought with a clipboard speaks up. She is young, still fresh faced. “Waiting on certain things for the special project with that.” The other thoughts mutter softly to each other. They are all very excited about the Coyote project.
“We’re working on the novel.” The thoughts are divided on that one. Some love the novel, others believe it failed before it even began and there are some who still believe in a good healthy edit.
“I’m worried about the novel,” says a panicked voice. “I feel like we are losing sight of what we wanted wit that one.”
“We have time to work it over, so don’t worry.”
“What about the grammar?”
“Editors.” There are some whispers of protest, they all wished we could do it ourselves, but we can’t. An editor it is. But the thoughts are worried the editor will think we are ninnies. Insecurity nags at them.
“There is the erotica story.” Someone quickly changes the subject. A collective frown for the erotica story.
“The podcast.” Some wide eyed worries.
“We are waiting to hear on the Fresh Fear anthology story.” Some nods, some shakings of heads. “Not sure how far we’ll get with that one.” More shaking, more nodding. The thought with the clipboard reaches under the table, which is filled with cups and scones and cakes, and pulls out a large box. When she opens it, a big pile of papers comes spilling out.
“We have some backlog in the projects.” The thoughts gather around the box, they ‘ooooh’ and ‘ahhh’ when they look inside. One pulls out a piece of paper. “The bloody mary story! What ever happened to that? It’s a good idea.”
“Needs rewriting,” says the thought with the clipboard. “All of these need rewriting.”
“A man’s world,” an optimistic thought says, “I like that concept. Wrote a whole novel, then rewrote part of it again… we’ll need to start all over.” All nod.
“Teeth?” someone says, waiving another paper about. “We almost finished this novel.”
“We’re reworking that to be a series of novella’s,” explains the thought with the clipboard.
“What about Alleria? And this Dutch one, ‘Weg naar Avalon’?” More muttering and eager faces look at the thought with the clipboard.
“We might combine those two together and make a whole new story.” The thoughts like this idea, and a chaotic discussion ensues. The thought with the clipboard clears her throat, and the chatter quiets down.
“Are we all clear on what we are doing.” The thoughts shrug. Sort off.
“Next week we are going on holiday, so we need to finish a few projects before then.” The thoughts agree, there is still a lot of work to do. “We can’t worry about marketing, or author pages or any of that, until we are back. The holiday is for rest, so no writing. Note taking at most, but only if you can’t do anything else.” The others nod. They need a break, some nice relaxation.
“For now, let’s just finish the projects that need finishing, and write on our novel. What we don’t like, we can always change in the edit.”
My tea is as cold as ice now, and while the thoughts mutter amongst themselves, I look at the clock. It is ‘crazy o’clock’ in the morning, and I need sleep. I put on an audio book to drown out the sound of their chatter. Eventually I fall asleep, knowing that I will have to listen to a similar conversation in the morning.