Yesterday, I realized that I hadn't made any real progress on this book for several months now. About the same time, I received an email from a so-called self publishing service, with advice on how to finish a book really fast. The essential idea was to isolate oneself from as many distractions as possible by holing up in a cheap hotel, subsisting on deliveries of pizza and Chinese food, and to do nothing but write. There were other good suggestions such as how to make an outline with 300 3x5 cards sorted out on the floor, and how to boost self discipline by forcing oneself to write 2000 words before breakfast.
But the essential lesson for me was that I was trying to spread myself too thin. I used to be able to multi-task a little, but I'm getting too old for that. So, I am going to try to isolate myself a little more during this month of July. That means that I'm going to suspend my two other blogs and make posts here shorter. I may also shirk my share of household chores by ordering Chinese and pizza instead of cooking and shopping.
I guess Henry, my ancestor, had similar problems. When he was young he wrote lots of beautiful long letters, but they got fewer and farther between as he grew older and became immersed in a responsible job.
If you have any suggestions, please comment.