My Small Victory

It’s been a while since I posted anything, for a number of reasons, but today, I feel moved to share something. Call it a small personal triumph.

I’ll warn you, it’s very small. But it feels big to me, especially in the face of, well, lots of things.

I finished editing a short story.

See, I told you it was small. Short even. 😉

But for me, right now, it’s a big deal. It’s the only thing I’ve managed to accomplish writing-wise since finishing the final edits for The Nine. Up until now, those copy edits were the only thing I’d managed since NaNo. It’s been a rough couple of months for me, on the writing front.

It’s not writers block. I have no end of things I could write. And it’s not that I don’t want to write. That is half the problem. I constantly have the urge to write. It’s more than just feeling guilty that I’m not writing (though that’s also present). The short story I just finished editing? I love that one and I’m thrilled that I’ll be sharing it with the world, so it wasn’t that I hated it or didn’t want to work on it. Or other things. I get excited going through an outline for a project I’ve planned. Really excited. And then I feel the story warming and starting to run in my mind. I think it’ll go well.

Then I try to sit down and work on anything. Even editing. It’s been painful. Suddenly I can’t keep focused. I go looking for things to distract me. Not consciously, but I recognize the pattern as I look back. It’s not been pretty.

I’ve been working on revising this 5k word short story since January 20th. Believe me when I tell you this is not remotely normal for me. That’s like a day’s work for me usually. Two tops, if I have a lot going on. Instead, there were days I couldn’t face it, others where I could get through maybe half a page before I had to quit. The last few days have been better, which is why I was able to finish. But it’s been a painful marathon and I’m not yet certain I didn’t make the story worse.

And the need to walk away, the difficulty facing the editing I was doing? It really has been about everything. All I’ve been capable of is making notes on story ideas. I enjoy doing that, but it doesn’t replace writing for me.

See why I’m celebrating this completed edit as a victory?

I’m hoping to begin the road to another victory soon. I hope to start the rewrite of the prequel to the Mirrors of Bershan trilogy. I’m going to stop calling it Second Thoughts, partly because I’ve come to hate the title, partly because it no longer fits. The story has grown and evolved. It isn’t what it was, or not purely what it was. This means it needs a new title, but I haven’t been able to think of one yet. It’ll come to me, probably once I’m writing the new first draft.

I need to get back to writing. I have stories to tell. Lots of them. I want to tell them. I want to share them. That means I have to write them. I need to find that groove again.

I hope I can.

About Julie

I'm a writer and photographer. I always have something with me to take notes for ideas or writing projects I'm thinking about or have on the go. I also like to go around with my camera and take pictures of anything that strikes me as beautiful or evocative. I'm perpetually working on one story or another, while waiting for enough distance to judge the last one (or more). I'm always working on several projects at once, developing the next book, even as I'm editing the last. Beyond that, there's always plenty of scraps and twists of ideas rolling around in my head, eventually turning themselves into full blown stories.
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7 Responses to My Small Victory

  1. Pete Denton says:

    I’ve been in a similar place since NaNo last July. I can’t stop thinking about the stories, but don’t seem to have the mental sharpness to do anything about it. I’m sure this is just the start again for you. Good luck 🙂

  2. R. K. MacPherson says:

    Creativity needs time to recharge. I finished the revisions to Assassins, but haven’t finished page two on Apotheosis. I’m not even going to try until May. It’s okay to let your mind take a break. You write at a Spaceballsian ludicrous speed, which is all well and good, but can take a toll.

    Sounds like you’re about ready to finish your break and get back to it. Don’t apologize. Rejoice.

    Most people never finish writing one book.

    • Julie says:

      Thank you for adding some perspective. I often lose that. *hugs*

      Also, I LOVE that description of my writing speed. Best ever. All the points to you. 😀

  3. jmmcdowell says:

    I think R. K. MacPherson nailed it. You have done an incredible amount of writing these last few years. Imagine if you’d been working at that intense of a level in some other part of your life. For example, if you’d exercised to that degree, you might have suffered a knee injury from overwork. And I bet that if you’d been focused on a big task at work, you might have recognized the burn-out factor immediately.

    It sounds like your brain has had a chance to refresh, and you’ll be getting back into that groove before you know it!

    • Julie says:

      Thank you. And you’re probably right, that I would have recognized the problem for what it was a lot sooner if it had been day job stuff. I hope this is the beginning of getting back in that groove. 🙂

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