I've basically done what I can do on The Keeper. I've edited, given it to readers, edited again, more readers, edited some more. It's ready for the submission stage now, and I've even sent off a couple query letters. Now that I'm starting down the submission path for this novel, the next step is to start the next big project. I understand that, the point is to keep creating. Can't put all my eggs in one basket; who knows what's going to happen with The Keeper, right? I know all this, but I'm having a much more difficult time moving on than I expected.
There are three reasons I think I'm having trouble:
First, I still don't feel complete with The Keeper. It's not published yet, not a Pulitzer Prize winning New York Times bestseller yet, so I can't help the feeling that I still have more to do. But really all I can do is query, and sitting around refreshing my email isn't helping me make progress or making things go any faster.
Second, life has just been crazy. Family changes, work and money stress, friends moving, just lots of things making life very unstable. You know all this, I've talked about it plenty. There are some big things coming up that I'm not going to talk about yet that hopefully mean I'm going to feel much more stable, so that's good, but I'm also not big on excuses, and feel upset at myself for not making good writing progress no matter the work/family/friend/money/life situation.
Third and lastly, and this one I find interesting, I just can't seem to decide where to commit myself next. I've got several ideas floating around. I've got the first chapter of a YA novel, some stories I'd love to build up into a collection, a screenplay idea. All the projects interest me, and I want to do them all eventually, but I can't decide what to do first. Also, this indecision combined with the feeling of instability is totally making me feel like I'm not in a position to commit to anything yet anyway. Again the frustration with myself: in about a month or two I will feel more stable, but I shouldn't be waiting for that or using anything as an excuse either.
So basically I'm in this position of wanting to move on and not quite knowing how to do it. Do I just wait it out, give myself a break, or try and force it through? If a break, what do I do in the meantime?