Last week, I went to visit my mom. It's normally two left turns, a right turn and two more lefts, taking about forty minutes depending on what cars you get stuck behind.
This time, because of the construction in town, I decided to go out of town the opposite way. By taking the back roads, I could connect with my normal route and be on my way without seeing a lot of orange cones.
Unfortunately, when I arrived at the turn, I saw two big construction signs closing the road, dirt instead of pavement and a variety of Caterpillar yellow machines. I skipped my turn and continued until I met my alternative route. This route would take me through the bottleneck areas of two towns (and another construction area) during rush hour. I didn't want to be stuck in traffic with three kids in the car. Sure, they were sleeping at the moment, but that wouldn't last, especially if the vehicle stopped.
Then I remembered another route I could take. I could switch highways an go to the exit right near my mom's house. Score!
After switching highways, I remembered that some of the exits in that area were closed due to construction, but I didn't think they all were. When I got a mile down the highway, a sign informed me that they were indeed all closed.
I took an earlier exit, figuring I could then take another road to cut over to the other side of one of the cities I wanted to avoid. It wouldn't be too bad. But when I turned the corner, you guessed it. Big orange signs, dirt and bulldozers. I turned around and took another route through the area of the missing exits and bridge, more orange signs and construction equipment. By this time, the kids were awake and excited about the loaders and dump trucks. Eventually, we got to my mom's and it really only took an hour.
This is how my writing career feels. I figure out a plan or a strategy and I hit a road block or the playing field changes. Sometimes, the way seems clear, but it doesn't work for me when I get there. I am hoping that my writing trip turns out like my day of detours and I finally get where I want to be or a place equally good.
(I did make it home without any detours, although there was a brush fire near an intersection shortly after I passed through. I didn't start it, I promise.)