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Holbrook
March 2nd, 2006, 05:49 AM
Have you ever lost this?

I donít mean writerís block or getting stuck during a work in progress, I mean you seriously canít be bothered to even make the effort to begin writing anything?

That is where I am at the moment.

It has happened before when I have completed a large project, I just get to the state when trying to write is akin to having my teeth pulled out by attaching them to a piece of string tied to a door, and slamming said door!. It always happens while I am bound up in the near hopeless task of trying to ďsellĒ the work I have just finished. With short stories this is not so bad. The affect has only lasted a few weeks, but when it is a novel like the last one, that has taken me 18 months to complete, the effect seems to drag on and on.

I suppose it must work its course. This I have found in the past is when I have received enough rejections to crush any hope I have of selling the work. It is then I drag myself up by my boot straps and start again. The thing that is worrying me how many times can I do this?

I have often said I am not pushing for a career in writing. I am not. I know I could never make a living out of it. I am not that good, but I have a small dream of making one novel sale mainstream. The problem is as time goes by that dream is shrinking and the logical, practicable side of my personality is saying more and more, ďOk time to call it quits it has been a fun ride, but time to move on, dabble a bit when you want but get off the submitting merry-go-round, it only does your head in!Ē

Anyone else get into this state of mind?

Dawnstorm
March 2nd, 2006, 07:28 AM
I get what I call word-weariness. Reading is hard. Writing is hard. Speaking is especially hard. (Listening, strangely, isn't impared as much.) In real life, I tend to communicate mostly in body-language, in such bouts (nodding etc.). Online I post a lot less; and I tend to post in sentence fragments (and may get altogether incomprehensible).

Turning to non-verbal modes of expression helps me, in such cases (music, mostly - I seem to be an "ear-person").

kater
March 2nd, 2006, 08:03 AM
Have you ever lost this?

I donít mean writerís block or getting stuck during a work in progress, I mean you seriously canít be bothered to even make the effort to begin writing anything?

That is where I am at the moment.



It's kind of where I've always been. I guess I've said this a bit but it is really, really hard for me to consistently write anything. I find other things to do, or just look at the screen. I've had a few bouts of good writing over the last few years, but they've been the exception rather than the rule.

JamesL
March 2nd, 2006, 08:45 AM
It's kind of where I've always been. I guess I've said this a bit but it is really, really hard for me to consistently write anything. I find other things to do, or just look at the screen. I've had a few bouts of good writing over the last few years, but they've been the exception rather than the rule.

This is exactly the same for me. I've never lost the desire to write 'cos I never really had it in the first place. Well, that's not strictly true - when I was 16/17 I had the writing bug and I wrote pages and pages and chapters and chapters and couldn't get enough of it. It was so easy. And sure what I was writing was pretty crap but the point was I was writing, and I was enjoying it.

These days...I just don't have the same drive. Haven't had for several years. I get the odd burst of inspiration and as a result manage to produce the odd short story. Other than that I just tend to wallow about, thinking up loads of cool ideas for the "novel that some day I am going to write."

Yeah right. The problem is, as Kater has already said, distractions. Writing is hard and there are too many things I would rather be doing - playing video games, watching films, reading a book, chatting on messenger...the list is endless. And so I wind up in the situation where I am now - where I believe I have the ability and I really have a lot of confidence in myself, but just completely lack the drive. It's always "soon I'll start writing" and "hmmm, I'll just wait a few more days before I start, just to flesh out the characters more" and so on and so on.

It's strange really. I think I'm good at writing, and I do genuinely enjoy it...but just can't bring myself to write nearly as often as I should.

Guess I'm just lazy. :(

onions
March 2nd, 2006, 09:46 AM
Holbrook, it seems like you're adressing two things
- the utter lack of will to write anything
- the shrinking of dreams

It sounds like when you get discouraged (by rejection letters), you lose the will to start writing anything new. Is that right?
The phase when you're trying to sell something maybe isn't the right time to begin something new. Maybe you need this phase of not writing. It may be annoying but necessary. Like Dawnstorm says, maybe you need to focus on everything else except words to recover your joy in writing.
Because that's what writing should be, shouldn't it? A joy. Else, why would we go into the considerable effort?

But I suppose you're a bit afraid that it's the discouragement that's stifling your creativity, and that you don't know whether you'll be able to recover it once you give in to not writing?
I think this might mean not working on forcing your creativity - but working on what your plans for the future actually are. What do you want to do? What do you need to get you there on the purely practical side of things, and how will you achieve this? Why are your dreams narrowing down? How will you deal with the rejections that are sure to come?

I don't know if that was much help. It's just my gut reaction to what you've written.

Anyway, good luck. :)

MrBF1V3
March 2nd, 2006, 10:54 AM
Holbrook-I always seem to experience a let down when I finish a project. By "let down" I mean anything from feeling a bit blue to a full blown psychotic depression. Interestingly enough, it is during that time when I look for critiques and other feedback. --what was I thinking?

And yes, I get tired of writing sometimes. I wonder off and do something else. Writing isn't my only creative outlet.

B5

Michael B
March 2nd, 2006, 01:43 PM
Have you ever lost this?

I donít mean writerís block or getting stuck during a work in progress, I mean you seriously canít be bothered to even make the effort to begin writing anything?
Under such circumstances I start trying to plan a story. It doesn't matter if it doesn't get any further than ideas, it is the thought that counts. Or should I say thoughts. Some of my best ideas have come from nowhere and pushed me back to writing.

Dazzlinkat
March 2nd, 2006, 02:23 PM
I think you need some downtime from writing. Do non-writing things, maybe a project you haven't finished .... need to clean the garage or attic or some such thing? ANY project that, when finished, you'll feel good about it getting done. Especially if its one that doesn't send rejections. And, doing those things always makes me yearn to get away from them :D and the writing bug comes back.

pcarney
March 2nd, 2006, 02:48 PM
I've gone through several stretches where I have not written at all- sometimes months long. Its not that I'm 'fed up' with it, I have other things going on in my life that I let push aside my writing. So it's not even writer's block. Eventually, I find myself back at the damned computer at 10 at night, cramping up my fingers over a keyboard. Its unavoidable.

I know you referenced rejection letters in your original post- and let me tell, there's something worse. There's a 'writer' who has yet to complete a story, let alone send it out for rejection. Hell, at least you've gotten to the point where you can try!!

simon woodhouse
March 2nd, 2006, 02:57 PM
Part of me sympathises with you, but another part of me wants to tell you to buck yourself up and get on with it.

Reading your post makes me glad I've never lost my desire to write. I've been floored by rejections, but I've always managed to pick myself up, and this surprises me because I'm not a very self-confident person.

I'm not sure taking a break from writing would be a good idea, as you may never go back to it. Really, I think you need to knuckle down and get on with it. Just keep going. If writing were easy, everyone would be doing it.

As far as finding a publisher goes, I try to look at that as being totally separate from the writing process. The writing I do for myself, the submitting, well I'm not sure why I do that. I suppose there's a bit of ego in there, I want someone to tell me what I've written is good.