Sunday, July 3, 2011

Writing Lull

I almost called this post Writers' Block.  However, I know better than to do that, for two reasons:

A.  I am a strong believer that there really is no such thing as Writer's Block. 
B.  Joe will yell at me if I use it.  XP

The truth is, it really is just a lull.  Thus why I would be a terrible author: I would never be able to work with deadlines, because I have to be in a mood to write. 

I went to the lake today to watch some fireworks and we were out there for about four hours, during which time I was supposed to get SOMETHING done, whether I typed it on my iPad or wrote it out in my notebook.  How far did I get?  About three sentences from Chapter 30.  *mumblegrumble*

This leads me to an important topic, though; something that I've learned in the time I've been writing:

Do not force yourself to write!

Obviously, for some of you authors that are working with a deadline you don't have much of a choice sometimes.  You need to get your work in, so you need to make yourself write it and take care of it during the editing.  However, for those of you that don't have a set deadline, please, please follow the rule.

The truth of the matter is, nine out of ten times, when you force your writing, it comes out sounding forced.  I've read over friends' pieces to critique for them and I've noticed changes in style where things are less flowy and they sound more like a textbook style of writing.  I'll point this out to them and they'll say "Oh, yeah, I wasn't having an easy time writing that.  I had to force myself."  I've found it with my own work as well: it just doesn't come out the same if you're trying to force the words out of you.

I know a lot of you like to stick with the idea that you should write every single day and there's nothing really wrong with that perspective.  But my own advice is: if it's having trouble coming out, then let it stay in until it's ready.  Your writing is a little baby in your belly: it will come out when it's ready.  You don't try to force it out on due date.

So, that's my writing tip for the day: do not force your writing!

I keep trying, I really do.  I'll get a few sentences in and then I'll say "This just isn't working..."  I won't even save what I wrote unless there's something that I know is good.  Other wise, I scrap it and I wait a while before I try again.

Anyway, there's that.  I don't feel like typing anymore, so I'm going to stop there.  Night, everyone.

~Maddi J.


  1. Also, my little personal note on my Tumblr account: I do a lot of complaining on this one. Or at least I will be.

  2. =] great post, and yes I would've shouted xD

    I love your tip and totally agree, do not force it! And also, this counts as writing so you're still writing!!

  3. rofl. Yes, Joseph, technically this does count as writing; but this is a very different kind of writing. XP

  4. I agree to. I always end up scraping my forced writing (or editing it beyond recognition).

    I used to have the same problem too, I would have to be in the mood to write. My novel was progressing very slowly so I decided to write every day. Even if it was only a sentance. I found the more I wrote daily the the less I had thoseoff days.

    Other things I do on an off days: do a light edit on what I already have. And do writing prompts to warm up my creativity.

  5. @Krista: Yes, most definitely. I've always found that editing not only gets me back in the swing of my book, but it also puts me in a writing mood. It's a godsend.

    And yes, trying to write every day is your best option. You shouldn't just ASSUME that you're not in a writing mood and at least try writing a bit.

    Thank you for commenting and also for following. ^.^

  6. I agree that forcing yourself to write doesn't always work, BUT, I would caution you not to wait TOO long before trying to get back in again.

    I'm part of the write every day school, so there are certainly days I don't feel like writing but I do it anyway. Does it come out the same? Definitely not, BUT can it be fixed later? Absolutely. The trick is just remembering to fix it later...

    ANYWAY! I think if you need to take a break, definitely do it, but if you still aren't in the mood to write after a week, you may want to consider sitting down and trying to get some in there anyway. Sometimes it takes pushing out a few terrible sentences to get back into the flow.

    Happy fourth! :)

  7. @Ava: definitely. Like I said in my last comment: it's best to try every day to write. Personally, my writing lulls are usually relatively short-lived, especially when I'm working on a story that I'm really enjoying (which is all of them XP). I never wait long before trying to write again. That wouldn't work for me at all.

    Happy fourth to you, too. And thanks for the comment.