Writing is tough lately…

Gosh, but I exhaust myself trying to write. I wanted to write 5,000 words today. I’ve written less than 200, and this is not an isolated incident. It has become the norm, for whatever reason. Rather than learning new skills and incorporating them into my repertoire for fiction I just keep getting bogged down in details.

Ever since I went to the amazing Write By the Lake Workshop and took writer Lori Devoti’s scene workshop I’ve written more and more slowly. I don’t blame Lori or the class. In fact, the class did me and my writing a lot of good. The problem I think is a mental block I’ve developed. I’ve become a planner, rather than a writer.

I’ve been saving awesome ideas for novels for so long… and college has definitely made it harder to actually write books while supplying me with dozens of new ideas for them. I can’t seem to keep to a writing schedule, or edit as thoroughly as I should.

I don’t keep looking for quick fixes, and I keep writing outlines and worldbuilding. I don’t think there is a quick fix for this, and worldbuilding and outlines only help if I’m up to the task of actually writing. I just keep stewing in this nonsense, reading writing advice, listening to writing advice, doing anything but writing.

I need to get writing, but I think I’m feeling too much pressure at the ol’ word processor. I’m just stuck in that regard. I feel like I can’t throw stuff away because its too hard to replace it. I’m mired in old projects.

I’m sick and tired of all the work I’ve put into this weighing me down. It’s like I’ve gotten worse at actually writing words the better I’ve gotten at telling stories. I’m not sure why that is, but I’m sure I need a cure. Maybe I need to be more creative in text?

By that last question I mean that perhaps I need to enjoy writing the actual stuff more by indulging more in improving my skills at the sentence or paragraph level? I think it might help, so maybe its down to exercises. I’d welcome any suggestions, but I feel stifled by the people I’ve been living around. I don’t really blame them for this. I’ve been writing for 7.5 years and have been talking about it the whole time. Nobody can sustain interest in someone else’s job when its gets that consistent I’d bet. They’ll play their own games while I play mine. But I seem to be missing the point of my own game lately.

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4 thoughts on “Writing is tough lately…

  1. 5000 words! Holy crap. Write 500 words a day for a year. Five hundred words is roughly one page. In a year you’ll have a 356 page, or 357 if it’s a leap year.

    • 500 words is actually closer to 2 pages in standard manuscript format.

      While I respect the attitude of slow and steady I personally like to make progress more quickly. When I have the time I’d prefer to put in 3-4 hours to write 5000 instead of working for half an hour to write 500.

      • For one of the fortunate ones. You can write fast. For many of us putting in our four hours of butt-in-the-chair time the yield is much lower. There is a Dickens for every Flaubert, I guess. Good luck with the book.

      • Fair enough. I hope I didn’t come off too strongly in my reply. I’ve always been a fast writer, and sometimes I forget how much that varies.

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