Fiction File: A Classic Writer’s Game That Everyone Plays, But (Usually) Hates…

I know it’s been a long time since I’ve had one of these for-fiction-writers-only Fiction File posts…but something hit home for me in a big way. I made this post a File because fiction is where this hit me first.

And even though my latest grapple with this thing occurred to me with a nonfiction book, the process is much the same.

Today is August 27th (at least at the time of this post in the U.S.). Sure you know that. But this is significant to me for one reason…

A pushed-back deadline.

I’m working as a developmental editor on a motivational book, and things have come up—mostly business and scheduling issues. All legit stuff, and I’m not blaming, just seeing things for what they are. Writing and life can be so similar that way.

We’re not done with the book yet, and the six weeks has stretched on a bit from the 15th.

So I’m trying to dig into other projects while I…

Hurry up and wait.

That’s the game. And one I’m familiar with—especially since I submit writing to online magazines. And prospect by email for copywriting work. And…well, you get the idea, right?

I thought it happened to book writers too, this waiting thing, in one way or another, but I had no direct proof…until now.

All right, sure…I’m an editor this go-around. But waiting is waiting, and books are still books. And I admit, sometimes I’m not launching into new projects with gusto as I wait. And it does help me to realize that the world doesn’t revolve around me and my schedule.

Another reason why this post is a File: Fiction is usually where I turn as a solution to waiting–creating new characters, stories, and so on. When I do things the way I should be doing them, that is.

How about you? Have you ever been stuck waiting—on an email reply, project question with a client, or what-have-ya? Drop me a line in the comments…what’s YOUR favorite way to turn waiting “down” time into “up” time in your life? Different projects? More prospecting?

Or do you take down time, every once in a while, to actually go out with family or friends, get some fresh air and exercise, or what-have-ya?

Until next time,



About Ty Mall

Thanks for stopping by. I've almost always been interested in writing, among other things. Along with discovering pop culture, I've uncovered a lot about the craft over the past 10 years. And whether you're a fiction writer or email copywriter, I'm here to pass on what I've found out. And have a ton of fun in the process.
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