Somewhere over the course of the past year, writing was pushed to the back burner. Whenever I had time to write, I normally did something else, anything else, including cleaning (which should have been a big warning sign).
Writing used to be a priority. More than that, it used to be a driving force in my life. What I did in the day was determined by the amount of writing I'd already gotten done. Finishing drafts of books, editing, revising, all of that, got done with a vengeance.
I honestly don't know. Maybe it was the cycle of rejection letters, the constant sending out of projects only to get nothing in return, and the slogging through draft after draft without any sort of return. That's enough to discourage most people.
Yesterday, on the way home from work, I started thinking about it. I do a lot of thinking while in the car, with my iPod on shuffle. It clears the mind. That's when I realized that I hadn't really done any forward writing on personal projects lately. I'd done a lot of planning. I'd done a lot of outlining. I'd yet to actually write any prose, though. It dawned on me. I had a long way to go before I'd even have a finished rough draft, and then I'd have a lot of revisions and edits to do, and after that, I'd have a long slog trying to sell it. It was a lot of work. An abysmal amount of work.
That amount of work scared me.
It didn't used to. I used to keep a book with me, made for accountants, where I'd write in each slot how much writing work I'd done during the day. I'd keep track of it all, and make sure that I was making good progress. Every day, I'd write for at least an hour, usually closer to three or four. If I missed a day, I'd double the next day. It wasn't a burden, either. It was a joy. I was excited for it.
Something needs to change. I'm not sure what, exactly, will help me rekindle my writing spirit. But, I do have a line-up of things I want to attempt in order to get me excited again.
- Set aside a specific time of day for writing. This used to be every morning, just after getting my first cup of coffee. I'll likely try this time first.
- Log my writing. It's easy enough to say "oh, I got some stuff done" and not really know how much or how useful it was. I need to start logging my writing again, like clocking into work.
- Reread the books which inspired me. Growing up, there were books that, after reading them, I wanted to tell my own stories. I'll crack these books open again, and see if I can't remember why I wanted to be a writer in the first place.
- Stop making excuses. Yeah. This one is the hard one. I'm procrastinating right now just by writing this, but it's helping.
It's just four things. A simple little list. It's a list that I've got to do. Somehow, I swear, I'm going to find my love for writing again.
~Tiffany "Kysis" Tackett