I always seem to juggle a dozen things on any given day. Most moms do. This week has been a completely new juggling experience. In addition to working on my new project (BIAM), I was determined to finish abridging my next novel (Freefall) for the audio version. I hate having things hanging over my head, so this project ended up at the top of my list. (Of course the top of my list still comes behind playing with my three-year-old, making sure that the nine-year-old practices her piano and the high school aged kids do their homework.)
Just as I received the most recent version of the manuscript to work off of, I also received the evaluator comments on another novel I had submitted. My editor felt that some revisions were in order before sending it forward to the evaluation committee. I glanced through the comments enough to talk out some ideas with her and make some plans of what needs to be done. I then got a call from my sister-in-law, Rebecca, who helps me edit all of my novels before I submit them. She had just finished looking over yet another manuscript, one that my editor has been anxiously waiting for.
Needless to say, with three completed manuscripts on my desk (I think there's still a desk under all of that paper) I had to make some decisions on what project to work on first. Although I was nearly done with the audio book, I decided to start on the novel my sister-in-law had returned to me. She is incredibly talented with making suggestions on how to smooth out my problem spots, and I was excited to see that not a lot more work needed to be done on this one. I spent all day yesterday writing the summary, filling out the required submission forms, and reading over the latest changes. Then, with my fingers crossed, I sent it into cyberspace to my editor.
After my anxiety level started back toward normal, I decided to finish up the audio book. That project was finally completed today and has also made the voyage to my editor's e-mail inbox. At this point, I'm not only feeling sorry for my overburdened desk, but also my overburdened editor.
Now I just have to find a way to relax enough to find the heart of yet another novel before getting back to the project I had planned to work on this month. If nothing else, I have learned one thing. No matter how much you practice, juggling manuscripts will always give you papercuts.