Waiting…and waiting…

- by Charlotte Hubbard

Ever feel like ketchup that can’t come out of the bottle?


I’m stuck right now, working on a sexy cowboy novella that’s due Sept.1st, but REALLY I’m waiting to hear back from my other editor: at our NINC conference in NYC last March, I had a STELLAR meeting with her, after my agent whipped her into a frenzy about a new series I want to write! I couldn’t WAIT to get home and hammer out that proposal package! I set aside a historical I’d started and revamped my summer writing schedule so I had time–if I cranked diligently–to write the first book of the new series this summer.

Then I got waylaid. My agent, bless  him, insisted I write more conflict between my hero/heroine–which I did–and finally, weeks after I’d hoped to be finished with this proposal, he pronounced it “fabulous!” We sent it to my editor with fingers crossed, and I jumped into my cowboy novella so it would be completed before I got the big YES to write my new series launch book. I again revamped  my writing schedule, planning to do a “book in a month” draft for this exciting new book.

I figured I’d be kicking butt on it by now.

But I’m still waiting…and waiting. My editor, bless her, got mired in a backlog of editing and hasn’t had a chance to read my proposal. And now she’s gone on vacation…

And my sexy Native American rodeo rider has packed up his saddle. He knows I’ll do just about anything except write right now–and I know darn well he’d bring this novella to a bang-up happy ending, rescuing the heroine’s ranch from foreclosure, except I’m too distracted to play with him. Gawking towards New York. Waiting, even though I know that’s a p-poor waste of my writing time!

SOMEBODY PLEASE HELP ME!!!  I’ll send a free book to the reader who comments here with the best motivational, kick-in-the-pants suggestion. Visit my websites: www.charlottehubbard.com and/or www.melissamacneal.com and let me know what title you’d like if you win!

The best part? We’ll both win!  I can’t WAIT to hear from you!

Charlotte Hubbard
who also writes as
Melissa MacNeal


  1. Dang, Charlotte. I hate to see you suffering. Have you tried chocolate? Hard liquor? LOL I need the same thing you do right now, unfortunately. And I hate to use the words, but…will-power…ouch.
    I’ll be checking to see what other suggestions you get and maybe I can benefit from the wisdom as well. :)
    Good luck! While I wait I will be thinking about your sexy Native American rodeo rider. Yummy…

  2. Knew I could count on YOU, Kim! And so early in the morning, too!

    The chocolate and booze solutions might be good…my rodeo rider likes Yukon Jack, so maybe I’ll get a bottle today….
    Yet I suspect that would keep me OUT of my chair and not writing, unless I wait until later! That just leaves the chocolate. Hmmm…I know there’s some Dove dark around here somewhere….

  3. I too am afflicted with the ‘wait-itis’ condition, so I made up a saying which stays taped over my desk.

    Writing is a B*I*T*C*H – Buns In The Chair, Honey! ™

    Sometimes all you can do is sit down and type a word. Then another. Then another. And so on.

    Not fun, but it works.

  4. Gee, what a great idea, Janis–I could post that at my desk with my photo beside it. It’s so me! ;-)


  5. Patience is a virtue…la la la la laa. But there’s nothing you can do to make your editor do her job any faster. What you can do is make your wait more pleasurable. Bring that sexy cowboy back and put him through his paces. Put on some inspirational music, crank up the air conditioner, and give those fingers a real work out…. I mean typing, you dirty girl.


  6. First, I am in no way a writer and I admire the talent and skills it takes to write a book, especially one that entraps thousands of readers until the very end.

    I really like the B*I*T*C*H* comment.

    If I were in this situation, I would try to put myself in the characters life. Maybe do some research and visit the area that the book is set in. Talk to Native Americans Go to a rodeo…you get the idea.

    Oh, and send me some of the Dove Dark! One of my favorites!


  7. You could try posting some motivational quotes around your workspace. Or you can try something that would help you relax to get in the mood to write, like music, movies, or even taking a walk.

    Here is some quotes I found.

    “Success is the prize for those who stand true to their ideas!” — Josh S. Hinds

    Take time-out 1/2 way through your day to ask “what have I done today?” Then act on your thoughts! Chances are if it was enough for you to ponder it, success is not far behind! — Josh S. Hinds

    “You’ve got to get up every morning with determination if you’re going to go to bed with satisfaction.” — George Horace Lorimer

    The pages are still blank, but there is a miraculous feeling of the words being there, written in invisible ink and clamoring to become visible. ~Vladimir Nabakov

    Words – so innocent and powerless as they are, as standing in a dictionary, how potent for good and evil they become in the hands of one who knows how to combine them. ~Nathaniel Hawthorn

    Ink on paper is as beautiful to me as flowers on the mountains; God composes, why shouldn’t we? ~Audra Foveo-Alba

    If I fall asleep with a pen in my hand, don’t remove it – I might be writing in my dreams. ~Danzae Pace

  8. Gee, I’ve got to thank everyone who’s responding here today! And you’ve all got me figured out, too–I love those quotes, Amy, and haven’t read any of them before. Nabikov’s image of words being written in invisible ink is so cool…if only you could hold the page up to the window and see the words that are to come out, eh?!

    And Barb, well…Barb knew me before I emerged as Melissa MacNeal, the first dirty little girl from our RWA chapter to publish erotica!

    I don’t stand a chance! I’m going to have to start working on this novella again!


  9. I’m always looking for ‘rewards’ that don’t involve food or alcohol. It seems we are socialized to always think of eating and drinking when we want to celebrate or relax. I’m a work before play type, so it helps me get over the hump when I can set a reward at the end of the work part. A goal or carrot, whichever vision you prefer. Some time with a good book (just for pleasure), a relaxing bath, walk in the park, computer game, movie, etc. Whatever floats your particular boat.

  10. Charlotte, You have more determination than anyone I know. Use your “waiting” as a reward. AFTER you’ve written a set number of pages, you can check your email. Even if it dings while you’re writing, alerting you to incoming mail, you can’t peek. Set your phone to the machine and turn off the ringer. Then close your eyes and invite your rodeo rider into your mind. Have a flirty conversation with him, just for yourself, before you put fingers to keyboard. Let him get you eager to spend time with him. You don’t have to use any of your conversation with him in the work–that’s just for you. ;)

  11. Hi Charlotte,

    How about taking a relaxing bath with everything outside the bathroom silent to help clear your mind?

  12. THANK YOU, THANK YOU, THANK YOU!! to all who gave me such fine advice! You’ll be pleased to know my cowboy has returned and I cranked out 10 really good pages yesterday!

    My give-away time has expired now! I’ve notified AMY SMITH that she’ll receive her choice of titles from either of my sites. All of you–some I know (and you know who you are!) and some newcomers visited, and I’m a happy cat about that!


  13. Thanks so much! I just emailed.

  14. Hi Charlotte,

    Sorry I missed this blog when it first came out. I was in Seattle for the PNWA conference (giving my workshop on the Joy of Writing Sex!) and didn’t get around to checking my emails till I got home.

    I posted a Mark Twaine quote on my website under my Writers Corner tab. He says:

    “There are plenty of rules for attaining success, but none of them work unless you do!”

    Sad, but true!