Monday, October 3, 2016

Self-Imposed Exile From Writing

After listening to Elizabeth Gilbert's podcast (Big Magic) with Neil Gaiman, I decided her advice for a writer to take a month off was what I needed.

My brain had been feeling very addled, confused about what I wanted to focus on, unable to focus on a single project, at a loss for a project I've spent a lot of time on that I was feeling  done with, not wanting to write at all, etc, etc, etc.

I didn't take a full month.  It ended up being about three weeks- shortly after my last post, I guess (the author she was helping out didn't make it a month either).  During that time, I had a lot of the same thoughts going through my head and I even had myself doubting if I even wanted to write anymore, feeling like it had run its course in my life.

But I knew that it wasn't really a wanting to quit, just a frustration over my work.  I have too many stories floating around in my head that I want to put onto paper.

That was part of the problem.  Too many stories I want to write, and they gnaw at my soul, begging, demanding to be released. I've got picture books, early to middle grade chapter books, books for adults ranging from epic fantasy to a historical fiction/romance, and poetry as well.  Within those genres are so many ideas.  Even writing this down I'me feeling overwhelmed.  I have a trusty journal that I jot ideas and stuff in, but I feel even that journal is ready to explode.

Journal in question (sorry it's upside down,
but not enough to correct it).
God, another thing to do just popped in my head, so here it comes.  Tonight at my daughter's keeper practice, I'm going to bring that journal and take out all my ideas from it and put it in a separate journal as that journal has writing, class notes, finances for self-published books, etc in it.  I need a set idea journal.  I need to write it all down; organize it with sticky tabs.  Sorry, if I didn't write it now, I'd forget it in 2 minutes.

So, what did I do today?  I took the story that I love, and have spent time on, had critiqued by critique groups, 12x12, and even paid an editor for help, and, after submitting it to about 35-40 agents, and getting one ask for a rewrite (but heard nothing after the rewrite), I decided it was time to submit it to magazines.  I submitted it to one, but will research more.  I also made massive revisions on the first two chapters of an early chapter book and turned it into one chapter that was more age appropriate; I'd had it geared more for middle grade.

Geez- my brain is back on the previous paragraph (just thought I'd let you all know).

So, that's it- I think.  Happy Writing!!!

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