I was recently asked by my agent to give an estimate of when I might be able to get her a revised final copy of the complete manuscript she's currently shopping around for me. I really wish I could tell her.
Not because I don't have a clue how long it takes me to type in (I'm one of those freakish throwbacks who writes first drafts in longhand) and revise half a manuscript, but because my "life" is currently up in the air. The fella is waiting to hear on a job offer that will potentially have us moving halfway--no, about 3/4 of the way across Texas. We currently live in the Panhandle (that's the square, not-very-panhandle-looking part that sticks up at the top, for those of you who aren't familiar with the nomenclature), one of the more westerly parts of the state. The new job, if it happens, will take us to the Texas Gulf Coast. (Yeah, I know, they have hurricanes. We have tornados. Not a lot of difference, IMO.) But until I know whether I will be packing up my household goods and moving them over the summer, I don't really know how long it will take me to get this ms. revised and sent off to the agent, because I don't know how much time I'll have.
Summer is already filled with three conferences (an all-genre one in June, RWA's conference in July, and a science fiction/fantasy con in August), plus the mandatory visits from the grandboys, so I'm already working around those as is. If we add a move (and the insanity-making elements of selling and buying a house) to that--well... But I do keep thinking how much fun it will be to introduce my landlocked grandsons to the beach. I don't want them, like my nephews once did--mistaking a golf course sand-and-water hazard for the beach...
(My middle sister lives in Idaho, and when our kids were little and her family came to visit the Texas branch of the family, we got a golf course condo in Rockport, on the Aransas Pass (No "k" in Aransas, and it's pronounced ah-RAN-sahs), because we thought it would be safer with a horde of pre-schoolers. There was a pond behind the condo, surrounded with sand, and when we all arrived, the nephews spotted that pond, and went running out to it screaming "The beach! The beach!" They were duly impressed when they saw the "real" beach.)
I do know in general how long it takes me to write a book of a given length. And I know how long it takes me to get it revised and ready to ship out. Of course, given the fact that my books tend to grow when I'm writing them, it can sometimes take a little longer than I expect to reach the end. The writing business is insane as it is. When you add life to it... the insanity compounds.
Has life tripped you up lately? We'll listen, if you want to share.