So I am looking at my file of "final" revisions for EASY JOURNEYS and noticing that starting every writing session with a fresh duplicate of the last file I worked on means that I now have a list of dates and times at which I actually sat down and worked on this book.

In the past year, I've made sixty duplicates. That's about one session of writing per week. Not a whole freaking lot, in other words. What has happened to the time? Did I spend all of it shopping online and eating bonbons?

And then, as I am beating myself up, I remember that this year, I also finished TWO OTHER BOOKS. And, while finishing these books, and in addition to the sixty sessions I just mentioned, I spent four solid forty-hour weeks working on line-edits to EASY JOURNEYS, a task that takes place on paper before it goes to the screen.

So, revising upward, that's a total of sixty writing "days." How many work days are in a year?

About two hundred.

But, oh yeah, I've got a kid and a husband who travels a lot of for work, which means that my time isn't exactly under my control.

And I've been careful enough to make a backup of my novel every damn time I sit down to work on it, which ought to say something about my seriousness. Maybe one day in every three isn't so terrible, given everything else that's going on. Or maybe the real miracle is that I haven't given up yet.

I wish I could be like Annie Dillard, who writes so well about not writing. But of course this is not what I am doing. I am, in fact, working hard, and I'm making progress. What would happen if I stopped looking for evidence that I'm useless? Would I write more, or would I just read celebrity gossip all day?

Either way, I suspect I'd feel better.