June, it seems, had this niggling habit of bringing a hiatus to my writing. Now, with the onset of July, I find myself reminiscing – wondering why that is. It could be chalked to a great many things.
- It’s one of our busiest times of year – school gets out, branding and AI start on the ranch, plus everyone and their dog launches into a flurry of summer activity.
- Special occasions cluster in June – this year we had two weddings, homeschool social outings and a family camping trip.
- Frazzled brain recovery – It’s the month in which I must retrain “Homeschool Teacher Mom” to revert back into “Plain old Mom”. For two whole months I can let go of (most) homeschool thoughts, and just focus on being a wife and mother.
Here I must elaborate. This frazzled state takes on several stages:
- Euphorea – “Praise God! School is done. Summer is here!”
- Fizzle– “Just let me veg in front of the computer, drinking cappuccino and playing computer games for a week.”
- Reality – “You mean I’ve still got a house to clean and kids to feed?”
- Confusion – “Wait, what? June is over?”
- Epiphany – I should whip myself into shape and make this summer count for my family and myself.”
- Discipline – “Ok, I’ll get up and work now.”
The observant among you may already have noticed that it took longer than a month to undergo this transformation. But the real question is, what does all this rambling blather amount to? What is she trying to say? And how did “the real question” suddenly turn into three?
Alright, gosh darn it! I’ll tell you!
It’s called: BURNOUT!
Particularly: Writer’s Burnout
My brain is fried every which way to Sunday. And I’m not even sure if I used that cliche right. Really, I don’t even give a flip.
And the cliche police can take a flying leap for all I care! The grammar police too! Take that SUCKAAAAAH!!!!!
Honestly, it makes me sick to look at my manuscript anymore. I’m so tired of editing. So tired of trying to make things “just so”. So tired of the fact that I’m actually irritated by the realization of a excessive “so” use in this paragraph. Don’t even get me started on the fragments.
When you’ve spent as much time editing, writing and rewriting as I have, the inner editor becomes sensitive to EVERYTHING. Nothing is sacred. Nothing is good enough. Everything “Sucketh royally”.
The desire to write has all but flown out the proverbial window.
I’m overwhelmed, overwrought, overstretched….
Yet somehow, not overcome.
Isn’t that strange? Instead of throwing in the towel, I find myself forced to sit back and reevaluate. Sure, it’s discouraging that I’ve let an entire month go by without so much as a page written in any manuscript. And it’s not for lack of trying either. I cannot tell you how many times I’ve opened up a document, began reading through it with the intent to write, then ended up closing it and doing something else.
Upon reflection, it occurred to me that it was high time I took a break to refuel creativity and get reorganized. So most of June, when not immersed in other things, I read. I’m currently in the midst of four different books! Yes, my husband believes I have a problem.
I, on the other hand, found peace with this issue long ago. My only concern is why it took him fourteen years to realize said problem.
Now, with creativity refueling in process, I’m left with the dilemma of how to get organized. Where do I start? Everything in my life feels like such a jumbled mess. When it comes right down to it, I can only think of two major issues standing in the way.
- There’s no succinct game plan laid out to tackle.
- My seclusion makes me feel like I’ve no one who genuinely cares about my writing and wouldn’t be bored to tears discussing it with me.
The game plan issue is the easiest to tackle. I can throw together a To-Do list in no time flat. I’m the List Master!
Actually tackling the list, though? Well, let’s just say that for a procrastinating, melancholy, phlegmatic, that’s gonna be one tough foe to beat.
The seclusion thing is a tougher nut to crack. Partially, it can’t be helped. Our physical location naturally lends itself to seclusion. To be perfectly blunt, I live forty miles from the nearest town. Most of my family and friends would rather I make the effort to come in and socialize than have to drive all the way out here to talk to little old me.
Yes, there is a bit of a mopy undertone to that sentiment. Sorry, I can’t help it.
Secondly, most of the people I know who are actually passionate about writing fiction and enjoy discussing it, live even further away. So conversation with them is often limited to social media, email and text. Don’t get me wrong. I love that this option is available to me and have received invaluable feedback from some wonderful people. The internet is a God sent! I just can’t help wishing that I had individuals with whom I could talk face-to-face about writing. And if the conversation could carry on for more than five minutes without glazed eyes or lectures that would be great.
So, long story short, I need advice. I need confidants and people to keep me accountable and encouraged.
I need to hear from you!
On this blog!
So post your thoughts below. Ready, set…