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Need to step away from the computer…

December 17, 2009

Those of you who have been following me for a while (and those of you who catch up on the Fb feed) know that I have a slight tendency I try to manage called OCPD. Obsessive compulsive personality disorder. It is what drives me to do what I do. Day in and day out.

My friends marvel at the organization of things in my house. What they don’t see is when I neglect that organization and things start to pile up and I have mini-freaks outs in my house and start yelling at everyone to put their crap away or I’m going to throw it all out. I, of course, am the biggest offender of not putting things away. A fact that is not lost on my family. But I do try.

I’m fascinated with finding or creating a system that works. That doesn’t always mean I have the wherewithal to manage said creative systems day in and day out. I control small things around me to balance out the lack of control on larger things in my life. Hey, it sounds simple when you say it like that, right? I know all of this due to a bout with depression a few years back.

I went to a therapist who did a snazzy personality test on me and drew some conclusions based on our sessions and- Viola! It was like the wool was taken off my eyes for the first time in years. It took me a few months to realize that was the best I was going to get out of therapy – someone helping me to see things about myself I previously was unaware of, how to ‘deal’ with those tendencies, and then get the hell out of therapy. I honestly couldn’t see going on and on for years and talking about my ups and downs each week. She told me my problem and how to fix it. Now the ball was in my court to do something about it, so I did.

I am driven. There is no other word that fits me better. I am researching every single avenue I can to succeed with this book and at times I wonder why other writers aren’t doing the same.

Before the therapy my husband would lovingly (and sometimes not so lovingly) call me a freak and told me my brain worked different. Anyone who has actually met Pete might say the same thing about him, but I digress. I see things most people don’t. I make leaps of logic that are usually dead on – but leave people around me scratching their heads and wondering how I pulled that idea out of my ass. I plan and plot and strategize to the point that I can’t sleep.

I am very rarely shocked by a book or movie mystery (and TV is too damn easy to figure out) so I often prefer suspense and adventure. I love reading sex scenes because when you’re a married woman it’s nice to read sexy material to get ideas for the bedroom (THERE, I said it, brand me with a big RED letter A). Since Pete is pretty damn happy I must be doing something right.

I have a lot in common with the MC character of my book, Vivian. She has the power to do what I dream of – make everyone do exactly as I say. Does that make me an evil person? No, but an honest one. Wouldn’t life be simpler if the kids did what I asked the FIRST time I asked? If my husband actually listened when I told him where something was so that NEXT time he’d know? Part of OCPD is thinking I’m right about pretty much everything in life and being a perfectionist.

Doesn’t everyone think they are right about something and speak up about it once in a while? I can’t be the only one. When I read more about this OCPD thing I was a little put off. The people described seemed like genuine assholes and I was rather upset to be lumped together with them. The therapist went on to inform me that there were extreme cases and slight ones and apparently mine was rather slight.

The personality test revealed some much more important things about me than the “diagnosis” of OCPD – It was determined through a questionaire that I am a “Field Marshall” from the David Keirsey book Please Understand Me II. Reading the section that pertained to an “ENTJ” (again and again b/c it was written for a much more highly educated person than myself) really helped me to come to terms with who I am and why I do what I do.

I forced my husband to take the test and I was SHOCKED to find out her was my perfect and very rare match – a “Healer” an INFP (now what do all these letters mean, you may be asking? pick up the book and check it out, I really am not smart enough to explain it all). He was surprised as well and pleased with what he read about himself – after the disbelief passed.

Okay – I’ve rambled a bit today. Why is this so important? Why am I bringing it up? Because I think I’ve gone over board and need to re-focus. I’ve mentioned in past blog entries that I need to step away – but I haven’t been able to do it. I haven’t been able to let go of my dream when it seems so close to my grasp. I keep thinking that if I try one more thing, push into another direction that most new authors are afraid to try that it will be the one thing that sets me apart from the pack and I’ll make it.

I need to relax. I need to step away from the computer, the discussion forums, the endless marketing and promotion. I need to forget about December 18th looming close and wondering if V V will get knocked out of the Dorchester contest. I need to let go of my manuscript and get it out the door to publishers and advanced readers and just sit back and wait.

I think it’s the waiting part that kills me. My whole life if I’ve wanted something done I just get up and do it myself. People used to come over and comment at things in the house they assumed my husband did – wiring all of our electronic systems and running the surround sound was one. In our last house I even purchased a soldering iron to splice extra long stereo wire together to run under the crawl space in the house rather than have to open up walls (Pete got in the crawl space though, I’ll give him that).

Don’t get me wrong – my husband is my superman. He does more physical projects around the house than I will ever do. But I’m usually the driving force behind the design and the implementation. People who know us well know that I may be the brains behind most of the projects but he is the executioner – and sometimes he pushes me to design more so he can build it, not that I stand over him with a whip and force him like some casual acquaintances think. He really LOVES to do the stuff. Says that in a job where nothing is tangible (office work) that he gets immense satisfaction from being able to create something with his hands.

I need to re-focus and write. I need to get the pressure off with hunting down a publishing contract and let myself relax. I need to step away from the computer and chill. This will be my last post until next week or maybe a little after. I’ll pop in to Fb and let everyone know if V V made fifth place or if it’s still in the running for the Dorchester contest, but that is about it. I need to, unfortunately, focus on my health again for a bit and schedule some more doctor visits after the holidays.

What do you need to do? Focus on the important things and let go of the wants for a change. That’s what I plan on doing.


One Comment leave one →
  1. December 18, 2009 3:05 pm

    Hi :)Thank you for sharing such an honest heartfelt post. Congratulations on the novel & looking for an agent.Merry Christmas,RKCharron

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