Thursday, March 4, 2010

Wearing Many Hats

This past week I've been preparing for the presentations I'll be doing at a conference in April. Spending so much time and energy on this made me realize something.

I'm wearing more than just the writer hat. So I decided to keep track of what I do in a given week. Now, don't freak out (Jonathan) because I didn't do any math. I just took a good, hard look at my writing time and wrote down how I spent it.

Because I wasn't writing. I wasn't working on my MS. (We're having issues again. We need literary therapy.)

I've hung up my "Writer/Reviser" hat.

Instead I've been wearing my Critique Partner hat. My Friend hat. Query Ninja. PowerPoint Presentation Maker. Reader. Outliner (shudder). Copier. Google Image Searcher. Blogger. Commenter. Social Networker.

And that doesn't even go into my personal life hats. That's just what I did during my alloted writing time.

How many hats do you have? Which one are you wearing the most right now? I really need to get back to the Writer one. I'm the happiest in that hat. I miss that hat.

64 comments:

Caroline Starr Rose said...

I need to put on my Preparing for a Conference Talk hat, too.

Janna Qualman said...

If my view is any indication, you wear each hat very well. Take care, Elana!

Jonathon Arntson said...

Okay, totally not freaking out! Oddly enough, I may have done a little, itty bitta math on my blog today. Maybe.

I am wearing lots of hats too. None feel like uber comfortable. But it's like when I was a kid. I loved to wear my dad's hats. Two in particular. His rabbit fur-lined Mad Bomber and his Marine Corps hat from the Vietnam war. I put them on and they were far too large for my head, but not my spirit. Thrown into the forest with that Mad Bomber on, I would've either froze to death or made my way to survival. I am totally interested in survival at this point.

I can't believe I just compared Blogging to surviving in a hat that does not fit just yet...I need to refill my analogy/simile/metaphor jar.

Bish Denham said...

I don't wear as many hats as I'm capable of. Most recently I've been wearing a research hat for a story I'm working on and because spring is approaching a weeding hat.

Susan Erickson said...

I have so may hats that my neck is tired from carrying them all around. They are all so varied, yet all so connected. I'm a pretty good multi hatter....

Chantal said...

I never really stopped to think, but, absolutely I wear several hats sometimes--then sometimes I don't. Right now, I'm just writing. Critting is not allowed currently. Then there's the social networking--because that has become tre-importante. And then there's the blogging, which I really should start doing...hmmm...what else should be on my list...

Jess of All Trades said...

Not as many hats as usual...artist, writer, half-time blogger, retail employee, sister-hat, and (funnily enough) someone's potential-girl-friend hat ( :D )

Mostly I actually just want to know what conference you're doing in April. Because there is a conference near me in April. But maybe there's more. I'm sure. But that would be completely awesome.

Shut the door, pitch the phone, and do some happy writing time!

Also take two minutes and click through this: http://affluentartist.com/let-your-beast-out/

I posted it on FB too. It's wicked awesome :D

Stina Lindenblatt said...

I know what you mean, Elana. I'm trying to work on my outline for my newest novel but it ain't easy. I've been blogging more than I'd planned. And that means visiting other blogs too (good thing they're good--but there's so many). Because I'm involved in two writer workshops (one doesn't start quite yet), there's critting involved there. Fortunately the assignments are short and the writers are really good. Oh and gasp, I've become addicted to Twitter. Found out about some really cool contests that way.

No wonder I haven't had time to work on my outline. Today. I'm going to go unplugged plus I'll hide Catching Fire so there'll be no temptation to read that instead. ;)

Kristie Cook said...

Thinking about all the hats I wear gives me a headache...or maybe it's just the weight of them all. My dayjob alone requires many hats. Then there is personal and, right now, writing is a very small one. But like you, I have many others to wear during my normal writing time...marketing, social networking, researching, planning, designing, formatting, blah, blah, blah.

Good luck at your conference! I know you'll do great. What conference and what are you presenting? We all want to know, of course. =)

lbdiamond said...

Yup, wearing many hats is a part of life, I think. The important thing is to find balance. Don't wear out your hats!

Psst, some people can't wear hats. I think you look good in all the hats you described! *hugs*

PS, the writing hat is my favorite, too. It goes with everything. :)

foldingfields said...

Couldn't you just wear your writer shoes? Yeah, you can only wear one hat at a time, but there are many other accessories that go with it. Obviously too many would be a bit gaudy, but it would make for an interesting character.

Kristi said...

This morning I'm wearing my 'excited writer hat' -- I found out late last night that I'm a semi-finalist in the Sourcebooks Fire contest! I also finished revisions this week so actually it's a 'super excited writer hat.' Almost time for the Query Hat.

Elana - have a great conference. Your presentation will rock and I wish I could see it! :)

Christina Lee said...

AND you have a full-time day job away from your home!
At least mine is IN my home. Let's see there's newspaper column writing and blog writing, both of which take me away from "writing", along with social media. Oh and jewlery orders too. Sigh. There are just not enough hours in a day!!!!

Kerri C at CK Farm said...

I am a women of few hats at the moment. My mom hat is pretty colorful. Then there is my writing hat, the sombrero. My farm hat, a plain cap.

I have been in sombrero mode the past couple of days :)

Then we all have to put on our court jester hat so we can have a juggling fest!

Bethanne said...

right now, I'm wearing my commenter hat.

Erica said...

Great post - yeah, I think my personal hat is taking up most of the head room I have... I'd like to put my writing one back on as well - right now it's the revising hat ;o)

Suzette Saxton said...

I love hats! Mostly, I switch between the mommy hat and the writing hat, my two favorite jobs.

Can't wait for the conference!

Lydia Kang said...

Umm, you forgot "psychologist." Thanks for being such a supportive fellow writer!

Tamika: said...

I wish I looked better in hats. I think my face is too narrow or something. They always look awkward on me.

Mommy hat. Wife hat. Church hat. Writing hat. Blogging hat. Sadly in no particular order.

Stephanie McGee said...

I miss my writer/editor hat, too. Lately it's been shelved beside my reader hat and my healthy hat.

The hats I've been wearing most are my employee hat and student hat.

Mary Aalgaard said...

I've lost my fiction writer hat. Perhaps it's in the clutter that dominates my office. Anyone have a declutter hat? I need to borrow it.

Anne Riley said...

Hmmm. I'm wearing my teacher hat, which is a bit uncomfortable and not nearly as fun as my writer hat.

VR Barkowski said...

Just finished cleaning the house and threw away my domestic housewife hat. It didn't fit very well. Wait 'til my husband finds out. He really liked that one.

Stephanie Thornton said...

I'm wearing my Writer, Reviser, and Querier hat. The last one pinches.

In a couple days I get to exchange them all for Mouse Ears and a Sombrero. Vacation here I come!

Carol Kilgore said...

Usually I wear several hats at once. I don't like all of them. Usually the writer hat is the first one on and the last one off.

Shannon O'Donnell said...

Hats...hats...hats...

* Mommy/wife hat
* teacher hat
* school district in-service trainer hat
* state curriculum reviser hat
* district writing specialist hat
* writing assessment trainer and scorer hat

Sadly, I've been wearing all of these hats recently. :-)

Laura Pauling said...

Time management. (That's the revised version of my comment.)

Tere Kirkland said...

I've dusted off my writer hat lately, though my personal life hat has been getting more wear.

So much for having one project ready to query in April!

Kat Harris said...

Right now, I'm wearing the "Geez, it's-time-to-clean-out-my-inbox hat."

Alyssa said...

I've got the sister/daughter hat which I always love. It's the hats that keep me from wearing my writing hat that I don't care for. With my student hat, I enjoy my writing classes, but all the other classes make me nuts. I keep thinking, "This is taking up my writing time!" Just like cleaning my room or doing laundry hats - where's my seven figure advance so I can pass those hats off!

Rebecca Knight said...

Right now I have my Querying Pith Helmet on, but I'd really like to put back on my fuzzy Writer Beret soon :). I have a new WIP that is calling to me!

Good luck with your conference, Elana!! You have to come back with photos and stories!

Rebecca Knight said...

Maybe I should be like Jo from Little Women and swap the beret for a Writing Turbun? Food for thought... ;)

Shari said...

Today -- mom hat, daughter hat and reviser hat.

Natalie Aguirre said...

I'm wearing my attorney, too much volunteering but want to be involved in my daughter's school, social networking, and critiquer hat which is cutting down on my writing hat. I'm happiest too when I include the writing hat.

Angie said...

I love hats! Except when I have too many to wear. Like now. It makes me feel like I can't give enough to any one thing. But all I can do is give it my best, and that will be enough.

Jessica said...

Definitely not as many as you. LOL I'm not an accessory type of girl though so I have my writer hat on, critiquer hat at my side, and my social networking hat. :-)
I hope you find your writing one soon! That thing's expensive. *grin*

Carolyn V. said...

Wow, that's a ton of hats Elana!

I have a lot too. Some hats come and go, never to be put on again. Right now I'm wearing the "watching kids/blogging/wanting chocolate" hat. I wear that one a lot. =)

Danyelle said...

My hat is shiny and has an uncanny resemblance to a colander. :p One size fits all, and it's a great topic for conversation. O:)

Krista said...

I think my husband is wondering where I put my cooking hat (shh, it's in the pots and pans cupboard... he will NEVER find it there).
My favorite hats are my writing hat and my fun mom hat. And my best friend/sister hat. Those are great hats.
I hope you get a breather to wear your favorite hats soon. The hats that make you feel good in your skin.

Tricia J. O'Brien said...

My poor writer's hat is gathering dust. I've been Blogger, Crit Partner, Beta Reader, Pitch Writer, but not Manuscript Writer/Rewriter. That's no good.
I wonder if it would help me to literally put some hats near my desk with the labels on them, so I am forced to don the most important one most of the time! I need to make it super cool and most appealing, huh?

Kimberly Franklin said...

I love my writing hat too. I miss it. I've been wearing my work too much lately and it doesn't match any of. my outfits!

Karen Lange said...

I'm currently wearing more hats than I can count and if I'm not careful, all that hat weight will give me a headache. Which means it's time for reassessing what I really need to do.

I prefer the Writer hat; it's my favorite, but need to wear the Online Writing Instructor hat for a bit yet. Thanks for sharing this. You woke me up in a couple of areas:)

Bethany Mattingly said...

I miss my writer hat too! I've been wearing my "DO THE HOMEWORK BEFORE IT TOPPLES OVER AND CRUSHES YOU" hat. Let me tell ya, it isn't nearly as enjoyable. :(

Amanda B. said...

I think I sat on my writer-pitching-novel-to-publisher hat last night!

G said...

Dropped the blogger hat to concentrate on the writer hat.

sarahjayne smythe said...

I wear too many hats. Wife, mother, teacher, friend, coach, presenter, technology guru, writer, student, blah, blah, blah. The one hat I'm currently being crushed under is teacher. It's getting a bit brutal, and I'm not doing nearly as much writing as I want to do.

beth said...

Personally, I think I've put my writer's hat on backwards.

Lisa Nowak said...

I have a whole flippin' hat factory. Right now my landscaping hat is trying to knock my writing hat off my head, but the writing hat is fighting back, using the agent thing as a trump card to gain more time. :)

Jemi Fraser said...

Yikes! We do wear a lot of hats!

Mine? Writer, blogger, tweeter, reviser, and writer this week - for writing at least :)

DL Hammons said...

Sometimes I wonder who's wearing who!

Kelly said...

Unfortunately my writing hat's been in the wash for a few weeks. Gotta slap it back on!
I've been wearing the mom/wife hat the most, then blogging hat, commenting hat, volunteer hat, and class hat.

giddymomof6 said...

You rock!!! Can I just say that, please? I can? Whew! Okay, because you so do!!!

And me, erm--I'm prego right now, with my 7th kid... I can't remember all my hats, and I don't think I want to! LOL! They're way more boring than yours!!!

PS hope submissions are going well...

Kate Karyus Quinn said...

Well for the past month I was wearing the "I'm too sick to do anything" hat. It's not a great hat. Now that I'm feeling better I'm wearing the, "ugh, I can't believe I didn't do anything for a whole month" hat. Hmm... my hats are very wordy.

SB said...

I am jealous of the writer hat. My focus is too scattered. too many hats to run down. but lately, since my mat leave runs out too soon, i wear my mommy hat most often right now...i may try and glue it on...so i don't have to replace it with teacher hat -- sigh.
SB


not too serious i hope

Bethany Wiggins said...

The most important hat you could wear is the friend hat. You use your time sooo well. Thank you!

Amy Holder said...

My problem is that my writer hat magically transforms to less productive hats too often.

Kimberley Griffiths Little said...

That's where I've been for more than two solid weeks, almost 18 hour days with kiddos and family stuff plus all the publicity stuff and website and postcard design and school visits and Power Points and book trailer design and shooting my own images and photo shopping and, and, and . . . It's CRAZY!!!

You wrote last night: "I mean, your bio is better than my whole life."

That totally cracked me up, Elana! And you better not cower in the corner - you're a SPEAKER!!! At a major national conference!!! Yahoo!

Not that I want to make you nervous or anything . . .

Lisa and Laura said...

Dude, you've got a lot of hats. And can we just say that you look hot in all of them? Because you totally do.

Terresa said...

I have a mom hat, a Primary President hat, a sister hat, wife hat, daughter hat. I have a friend hat & granola baking hat.

And a writer hat & librarian hat to boot.

I haven't written enough this week, either, and I'm totally feeling it right now. Pass the literary therapy, plz!!

L.T. Elliot said...

I've been wearing my critiquer/editing hat lately and I want my writer hat back too. Got a spare?

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Solvang Sherrie said...

I've got too many hats. But taking the class is making me focus on the writing hat more. So off I go to write :)

Donna Hole said...

Day job hat takes priority over all; and its not a writers hat, but it eats about 70 percent of my time. Critiquer, beta reader, blogger, commenter. Nope, no writer/reviser/queryier in there.

I hope you find that writer's hat soon Elana.

Kris said...

Lately I'm thinking about all the mini-hats inside the larger hats. Like, inside my writer hat is freelancer, grant writer (for work), writer of YA fiction, blogger, emailer, facebooker, critiquer, and more. Plus all the other hats I wear - Mom, wife, friend, sister, daughter, etc.
Sheesh. I'm tired. Oh yeah, reader, too. :)

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