Wednesday, August 19, 2015

Wicked Wednesday - be okay with it

(This is the kind of picture you get when I can't find an appropriate quote online!)

Earlier this year, I started writing a new urban fantasy novel. It was a big idea, heavy and thick. But it was slow going. I felt like my mojo was stuck in the mud. I told myself it was because the story was challenging me and that's a good thing.

When summer break started, I had far less time to write. It was harder to find the writing groove. But I still believed I could finish the novel by the end of September. I was motivated. I knew where I was going with it.

Again, the words came slow. I wondered what was wrong with me. Because the story certainly was not at fault.

I decided to put it aside for a week or two. A little break was what I needed. That break grew into three weeks and then six.

Why wasn't I racing to write it? The idea is brilliant. Maybe I wasn't telling the story right. Perhaps I should start all over again. Am I not a good enough writer for this idea? Did I just crash and burn? Will I ever get my mojo back? Panic, fear, sorrow, freaking out, not enough chocolate in the world.

I started to write a new series of novelettes and they're flowing beautifully. So I guess I didn't lose my mojo.

But what about the novel? The idea is still like a shining star to me. I will go back to it. For now, I just need to be okay with putting it aside.

Maybe I will have to start over again and tell the tale differently. Not everything is going to come to me easily. It's part of the learning process. I need to be okay with that too.

And I need to be okay with being okay about it. It doesn't make me a failure. I haven't lost anything.

What are you working on being okay with?

20 comments:

  1. I've had to put certain projects aside, too, for the very same reason. They just weren't ready to be written/drawn yet! (Or, rather, I wasn't ready to write/draw them, haha.) Glad those novelettes resulted in a surge of words for you, though! That's awesome! :)

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  2. It just wasn't working for you at the time. Let it sit and come back later.

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  3. I couldn't get passed that image. I hate clowns! (So sorry.) But I'll simply second Alex. Great advice.

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  4. Heather, thank you. Sometimes pretty shiny ideas need time to cook in our heads. :)

    Alex, I will!

    SA, yes, a lot of folks would run screaming from that clown!

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  5. For me...it is ALL about the character. Do I luuuuuv her...or meh. My best novels have been with characters that have matured...which means series rock.

    That's me

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  6. Been there, done that! I'm currently rewriting a novel that I wanted to write really badly and even got a first draft finished, but it lacked the spark of other stories and I set it aside. For FOUR years. I thought about it the whole time and wanted to get back to it, but I couldn't figure out what was wrong with it. Moral of my story, it's okay to put stuff aside and work on other things because, in reality, your brain is still working on that story in the background, and when you're ready, you'll know what to do.

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  7. Sometimes an idea is so wonderful, but our skills need to catch up to make the most of the story. So keep honing your skills on those novellettes and such until you're ready to tackle the big boss.

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  8. It's crazy, isn't it? How some books write themselves and others make us slough through them? I'm baffled myself by the same issue currently. But you're right. We just have to shrug it off and go with what works. Here's to rolling with the punches!

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  9. I don't think there's anything wrong with you giving yourself time away from that project. Maybe it's exactly what you need. All the best.

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  10. That has happened to me plenty of times. I have several great ideas that ended up as half-finished books because the idea just didn't pan out in writing. I used to think someday I'd come back to the book later when that happened, but nope.

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  11. Maybe you're still mulling. I stall when I'm mulling.

    I had problems getting into the groove this summer too. I wrote something completely different (solarpunk dragons) then set a deadline with my editor. I'm at about 1/2 way, but still have half a book and a revision to get done by Oct. 5. Yeah, I'm starting to panic.

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  12. Yup, sometimes the novel idea is not totally gelled when I start to write it. I have to wait until more details filter in, the right POV or starting point.

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  13. I've started books that I've stopped in the middle. Some I never went back to and others sat for a long time and then they came together. Being okay with it is fine. And I love the picture.
    Susan Says

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  14. This happens to me too. Changing focus to another project is a good idea. :-)

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  15. Mac, I'm getting more into series too.

    Patricia, so true! I know I've had the shiny idea for a while now, but it still hasn't figured out how to be written right.

    M, and it promises to be a big one too!

    Crystal, here, here! :)

    Murees, thank you.

    Stephanie, I have plenty of manuscripts from long ago sitting around too. But ten times as many new ideas!

    Mary, you can do it!

    Catherine, I know what you mean.

    Susan, thanks! :)

    Misha, keeps the muse a hopping!

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  16. I'm trying to be okay with the concept that I might once again not have finished my story by the end of the year. When I missed the self-imposed deadline last December, I was positive I could finish it by this Christmas, but now I'm not so sure.

    And it's okay to put work aside and come back to it later if things aren't working out. Who knows what new ideas you'll come up with in the meantime.

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  17. I often find myself putting projects off in favor of others. It doesn't mean I don't want to work on them, but that I'm not there yet to write the story the way it should be written. Often the world, characters, and/or plot isn't quiet there or I'm dragging my feet on research or I just need to grow further as a writer to tell the story correctly. It's okay to have a project that's coming at a slower pace as well as moving on and coming back to it.

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  18. "Not everything is going to come to me easily. It's part of the learning process."
    Thanks for this reminder.

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  19. Sometimes the more complex stuff needs to brew first. It's like washing dishes- the untensils are quick pick ups and cleans. The heavy pots and pans, on the other hand, they are easiest done when we let them soak a while. Sometimes even overnight. No, procrastination and dirty pots in my sink do not bother me much.

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  20. Ken, you can do it! And yes, I'm having great ideas outside that story too.

    Cherie, I am my own worst boss!

    Michelle, we all need a reminder of that every now and then.

    Elizabeth, I hate scrubbing pans! So yup, I let 'em soak. Great analogy. :)

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