That question came from the comment section, which I read and take to heart, by the way.
The answer is, yes, deadlines can weigh very heavily on my mind–if I let them. Recently, I’ve been working hard to shift out of that hurry-hurry mode, and the thing that works for me is prayer. I ask for help. It’s really so simple–why is it so hard to just do it??? I’ve been a believer since I was ten years old (that seems to have been a pivotal age for me, since it was also when I began writing stories), but for whatever reason, I still have to remind myself to pray about practical things like work. I ask for inspiration and energy and focus, but I also ask, as I’ve said before, that the words I write will encourage people, make them smile, give them a respite, however brief, from their private burdens.
Here’s another example of a thought pattern I’m deliberately changing: somehow, I got into the habit, joking around at first, of saying that I was getting old. Bad Idea. My deeper mind believed it and started producing symptoms–fatigue, a slippery memory, etc. Now I’m singing a very different tune. I tell myself that I’m in the prime of my life and career, and that the best is yet to come. It will take some work–habits take a while to break–but I intend to press on, and I’m already feeling a difference.
As for that secret I mentioned, well, I’m not very good at keeping this kind of secret. (Although when friends confide in me, nothing will persuade me to tell). I’m working with the wonderful people at Montana Silversmiths to design a special piece of Western jewelry that will be featured in “Big Sky Summer”. Some will be offered as prizes–I’ll alert you when the time comes–and Montana Silversmiths will also be marketing them as a part of their lovely line. The plan is to introduce a new piece with each new book, and, as a jewelry lover, I couldn’t be more excited! Special thanks to Steve Miller for suggesting this.
Take good care of yourself today. You’re important.