The X Factor

Post by:  Lisa Hendrix
Just Finished: IMMORTAL OUTLAW (June 2009)
Currently:  Pre-writing (i.e. noodling around) in preparation for beginning IMMORTAL CHAMPION
Mood: Relaxed for the first time in 3 months
Yep, I finished IMMORTAL OUTLAW at last, so no more excuses for not writing a real blog post–although I could claim topic depletion, since I’ve been blogging all over the ‘Net on my virtual book tour (if you’re curious, you can find info on my stops at my personal blog).  
So, we’re talking about keeping the butt in the chair.  I’ve been keeping mine in the chair so much in the last 8 weeks, both it and the chair have gone flat.  My legs ache from sitting too much, my clicking thumb hurts from too many clicks, and my walking shoes have gathered dust. And yet I’m happy, partly because yet another book is done (which means on acceptance money is coming soon) and partly because I really love accomplishing another part of my dream. 
And of course, BICHOK is how I accomplished it — but not why. When I’m nudging writer friends, what I say is:
Butt in chair, hands to keyboard, heart to dream.
The heart to dream part is critical. Without the dream, there’s no reason to sit down in the first place. I just did a big post over at Plot Monkeys titled Persistence of Vision, in which I discussed getting from that initial “I’m going to write a book” to actually doing it, i.e. turning the dream real. The dream is the motivator.
Oh, yeah, sometimes there are other motivators, for sure.  I’m a big external motivation person myself–nothing like a deadline to make me get the job done.  But I had to have the dream in the first place, or there would never have been enough book written to get that deadline. I had to have the dream to put my butt in the chair that first time. And I have to keep that dream in my heart, or the temptation to just say, “Oh, what the heck,”  and give the money back would sometimes be too great. At 3 am after only 4 hours sleep the night before, it’s the dream that keeps me awake and punching at the keys.
And after the hellacious month I’ve had finishing Outlaw, it’s the dream that made me start a file the very next day named Immortal Champion, and open a Word doc to start brainstorming the plot. Not the dream of finishing that book, but the dream of being a WRITER when I grow up.
What do you dream of doing? What are you willing to do to make your dream come true?
BONUS BICHOK TOOL:  Freedom (Mac only).  Disables your wifi and ethernet connections for an amount of time you choose, 5-360 minutes, then re-enables it when the time is up. You literally cannot bypass it during the specified time, short of rebooting your computer.  Solves that email/web-surfing problem.


The X Factor — 5 Comments

  1. Congratulations of getting it done, Lisa. It sounds like a great book. I have Warrior and hope to get it read in a few weeks.

    I don’t have a Mac, but that’s definitely something I want. My son tells me he can set the same thing up for me, but so far he hasn’t done it. I’ll tell him it’s my Christmas present, and give him till DEc 25 to get it done.

  2. Ok…I want one of those programs that turns your internet off for my PC! Where do I get it? I’m the biggest internetaholic there is and I need a 7 step, 12 step, or 30 step program to help me. Loved the article, Lisa. I’m sooo excited you got the 2nd book done! Congrats…are you taking a neglected family member out to celebrate (tell them it’s about them…they’ll never know). Best of luck with the next one. M:)

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