Wouldn’t it be great if writing was like a normal 9 to 5. You go to work. You get done what needs to get done. And then you go home. But writing isn’t like that – it’s not like that at all. Writing (for me) is based on whim and emotions and environment and a hundred other tiny factors. It’s unpredictable. And no matter how hard I try to stick to a schedule – inevitably if I’m just not “feeling it”, it either won’t get done or the work will suffer.
This happened to me recently with my 6th book in The Protectors Saga. I wrote it and finished it, but there was something was off about it. My heart wasn’t in it. I pushed through because I felt I NEEDED to finish it. I felt obligated as a writer to put it out there. But then, in the editing process, I realized the story had suffered because of it. I had lost touch with the characters. I was missing the magic I had put into my other books. I couldn’t publish
So I walked away from it. I walked away from writing for a little bit. And it worked! I came back slowly, finishing up another book I had been working on for about a year. And I loved writing it. I loved writing again. And then I dove back into The Protectors (my baby that I love and adore and would never want to be anything but wonderful). I’ve begun re-writing parts and am back to feeling connected to my characters, immersed in the world, and excited about where the story is going.
I know as writers we can feel obligated to always have to be writing. But sometimes it’s okay to step away as well. Sometimes we put too much stress on ourselves. We put too many expectations on ourselves. It can hinder our work and block our creativity. If you need to stop for a time – stop. Don’t judge yourself. Try not to be too hard on yourself. You can always come back to it. I stepped away and came back strong. You will too!