I don’t know what the deal is. I write (or maybe it’s better said “work on writing stuff”) every day, but I just can’t seem to get out of a slump. I constantly feel like I’m not seeing enough progress, and no matter what I’m working on, it seems like I want to be working on something else.
I hate to even suggest this, but I wonder if I’m getting bored with my current writing routine. I work on stuff for 2-3 hours a day. Right now, at least half of that time is spend on the blog, the podcast, and Theme of Absence.
The other half is spend either re-reading and resubmitting short stories, working on the new novel, or attempting to start a new short story.
And that last one is where I start running into problems.
It goes something like this: I get super excited about an idea for a new short story and write 500-1000 words like it’s nothing and then go to bed. The next day, I can barely even make it through the next 100 hundred words and promptly file it away to the WIP folder and forget that the whole thing every happened.
I’m also having a tough time with the new novel. When I find problems with my plot and realize they need to be fixed I’m like…ick. And my stomach churns at the mere thought of opening up my WIP folder and glancing over anything I started in previous years. It’s weird; it’s like I have all these ideas in my head, but as soon as I have to start cleaning up and existing (finished or unfinished) piece, I get either bored for frustrated and give up.
You know what though? I think that just by typing this I’m starting to see the underlying problem. I like to write, not because I like writing, but because I like creating. It’s kind of like Dungeons & Dragons. Building the world and coming up with the very basic stuff is often more fun than playing the actual game.
I think the solution to this particular type of writer’s block is to actively put aside time for creating. I know that a fixed schedule doesn’t work for a lot of creative people, but for me, I do better time management when I’m on a schedule.
So here’s what I’m going to try: If I have two hours to write (for example), I’ll schedule one hour for “creating.” That could include starting something new, writing the next chapter of a novel, a character profile, putting an ending on something else, or just some general brainstorming. What’s important is that I get that “creating part” out of my system and then I’ll be free to work on the hard stuff, which could include editing existing stuff and working one the blog.
It’s worth a try. Who knows? Maybe writing a little bit “for real” before working on the business stuff might help me start feeling like a real writer again.
We’ll try this for a couple of weeks and see what happens.
How’s your writing mojo lately? Are you having trouble staying motivated, or stuck bouncing from project to project? Leave a comment and let us know!