More years ago now than I care to mention I started writing a book, the idea for which struck me out of the blue. Prior to that I had written long rambling 'short' stories that went nowhere and my wife (who was my only reader) didn't like. I started hammering out my new book and my sole reader suddenly loved it. Then our son was born, my writing became sporadic, and suddenly he is almost 6 and my book is still not done. I work full time, where I travel overseas 15 weeks a year, and am studying for a professional qualification, but I for the last two years I am making a major effort and finding time to write somewhere in the gaps. God, it is slow going though with so little time and feeling utterly wiped out most days before I can even open the laptop. I hate missing out on time with my family though and could tell the missus was getting a bit fed up with never seeing me. My work had turned into a sprawling behemoth by that point and I decided there was little point trying to find a publisher for it as a first novel. So had already mentally earmarked a more first novel friendly project to begin on its completion. I then wrote a short story as she hadnt seen any of my work for years, and I wanted to prove to her that I could write, and wasnt just wasting my time sitting in our room alone. I told her about this and she advised me not to give up on my book, but I went ahead and wrote the story and she loved it. Being me, my 'short' story turned into 35,0000 words. It was open ended and she encouraged me to halt the book for a while and write the next part of the story. I could then turn it all into a short novel which would be more likely to find a market than my sprawline behemoth. Well this has turned into another effing long book itself. I am beginning to wonder if there will ever be any payoff. I can't stop writing, I just can't. If I dont finish a final draft of some sort of book by the time I am 40 (in eight months) I am going to hate myself. But good grief, the journey is hard when you don't know if there will ever be a payoff. Anyone else feel like this?