Last week, I discussed how I was engaged in several different projects as a way of coping with the pandemic. To be honest, I was juggling a lot of projects even before then. Part of the problem is I get interested in new projects before I finish the old ones. For example, this winter, I want to crochet my son, my husband, and me each a blanket in our favorite colors. However, I also want to make myself new slippers, a sweater, and make a variation on a Star Wars character that I have a pattern for. This is on top of my writing projects. Indeed, part of the reason I haven't finished the Dryads and Dragons trilogy I started a couple of years ago is because I keep starting other short stories and novels instead. (Not to mention how the plot keeps sprawling and how the romantic lead has taken over from the heroine.)
Are new projects really more exciting than old ones? I don't think so. I think we just become accustomed to current projects or get frustrated when they don't go smoothly. Our brains are wired to notice novel things. Old projects were exciting too when we first started them.
In order to keep from being overwhelmed by my desire to Do All The Things, I try to prioritize them. For example, time-sensitive projects like Vote Forward (which ends on October 17) or anthologies with limited submission windows get first priority. I also try to work on a couple of different projects every day. For example, after work, I may crochet for a half hour or so before writing a batch of letters for Vote Forward, write for an hour or so, and finish the evening with a little reading. As old projects get finished, then I can adopt new projects. Some projects do get abandoned if they're not working out, and perhaps that's necessary for one's sanity. Sometimes I stick with a project out of sheer stubbornness.
Are you able to focus on your projects outside work, or do you pick up new ones frequently? How do you make sure your projects get done? Feel free to share your thoughts in the comments.