Why Writing Can Sometimes Make You Feel Like A Lost Child #MondayBlogs #Writer #Writing

#wr

There are days when my writing sends warm tingling feelings shooting up my spine, sets off fireworks inside my chest and makes me walk a little taller. These days are rare, but when they do happen, I am a different person.

There are also days when my writing makes me feel small, anxious and alone, like a lost child. I thought the lost child comparison would make a good blog post.

Here are my reasons, which I hope some of you can identify with:

  • Once you take a break, step away, shelve or maybe publish a draft novel, which you have been attached to for months or, in some cases, years. This is very similar to letting go of your mum or dad’s hand. All of a sudden you are on your own and this can feel pretty scary. What do you do now and which way do you turn?
  • Some days being on social media can feel like you are sat by the side of the road, wearing your favourite Wonder Woman fancy dress outfit, watching everyone hurrying along to their book launches and meetings to secure publishing deals. You, on the other hand, have only recently stopped crying about your third draft, which has more crater sized holes in it than the moon and your missing favourite pen, which disappeared down the side of the sofa three days ago and has still not been found.
  • Getting stuck on a third draft, which has sucked the life out of you for six months and is proving too much for your little writer brain to cope with. You fight the urge to curl up in a ball and cry out for your parents, like you did when you were little.
  • Trying to decide which direction to take your writing in can feel similar to being a lost child. All the roads ahead seem strange and unfamiliar. Which way should you go? Will you ever find your way home again? As an unpublished author you are on your own and there is no editor or agent to confide in about whether you should switch genres or change your writing style.
  • When a close creative friend decides to give up writing. I have experienced this and it can make you feel like you are little again and no longer holding someone’s hand. All of a sudden you find yourself on your own. There’s no one to reach out to and you start to wonder whether you will ever recreate what you had with your writing friend.

If you are reading this and feeling like a lost child with your writing today, I am sending you a huge virtual hug with this post. I know how it feels and I have been there countless times.

In fact I am feeling like a small, lost child right now. I don’t think my third draft works and I feel a bit lost. Also my Wonder Woman outfit is looking a bit jaded.

What I do know is that help will appear, although it won’t be in the form of what I expect (magical literary elves turning up to rewrite my third draft). Help will come through social media, reading a helpful book, blog post or article, listening to a writing podcast, writing in a creative journal, reading another writer’s tweets or telling myself this feeling will pass.

This is what you all must take away from my post, the lost child feeling will pass.

Just keep writing and wearing your Wonder Woman outfit x

Photo: Upsplash

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I am a blonde writer of romantic comedy fiction.

21 thoughts on “Why Writing Can Sometimes Make You Feel Like A Lost Child #MondayBlogs #Writer #Writing

  1. Hugs back at you!!! When I feel overwhelmed (as I often do) it’s because I’m thinking about the next TEN steps (or more) I have to take on my journey instead of focusing on JUST today’s step. When I think too far ahead into the future, everything feels bleak. “HOW will I do this?” is practically my mantra. There are so many unknown variables. It keeps me from moving forward.

    It helps me if I keep today’s step small and manageable. For example: If I know I need to clean my kitchen, I won’t even know where to begin if I look at the room as a whole. It’s too many steps to think about! But if I think, “Okay, I just need to load up the dishwasher,” I can DO that in the time it takes for my coffee to brew. This is manageable. Then I can do the next step, clear ALL the extra stuff off the counters and put the things back into their “homes.” SMALL steps.

    Writing, I’m SLOWLY discovering, is similar. I have to keep the steps small and manageable. This, unfortunately, means I had to learn about outlining. I chaff at outlining, but it’s the only way I’ve found to break up the parts of the story into manageable pieces. I have plot points that need to happen around at certain page numbers, but I am flexible about this. I really like “Save the Cat” by Blake Snyder for help with outlining. It’s a book about outlining screenplays, but it gave me a lot of information about story structure which I found useful.

    With my outline (with approximate page counts) written, I just need to move the story along to its next marker: the catalyst, or the “all is lost” moment, or whatever marker is next. The “beats” of the story. For me, this has been super helpful! I also set up a new document file for each chapter because the temptation is WAY too strong to start editing previous chapters rather than work on the one in front of me. This way, I’m NOT writing a novel, I’m JUST writing ONE chapter.

    Good luck to you and happy writing!!!!
    xo Juli

  2. Thank you for this excellent post. It’s much appreciated, and I do hope that very soon your Wonder Woman outfit will be sparkling and the words will be flowing again.

  3. Oh my gosh pouting in a Wonder Woman costume is such a mood. Youโ€™re so right about bad feelings passing. Itโ€™s best to embrace them, know theyโ€™re temporary, and then let go so good things and feelings can come your way.

  4. Love this! Youโ€™ve totally nailed it here โ€“ it can be so frustrating when bad feelings get you down & everything seems an uphill struggle. I’ve found that if you write about what YOU love, keep it manageable and don’t try and rush it, it’ll make the writing way easier. Readers know sincerity when they see it, and theyโ€™ll enjoy your genuine enthusiasm for a story YOU feel passionate about. Don’t give up! Good luck with the writing. Youโ€™re doing great! ๐Ÿ˜€

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