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As good as a rest

June 10th, 2010

I’m nearly at the point in my novel where I said I would stop for a break. But now that I’m so close to that point, I’m really really crawling, and finding it hard to get into it.

Putting the pen down

Image courtesy of Markus Rödder.

Now it could be that I’m just tired if the thing. It could be that I don’t have enough material in my head. It could be that since I decided the point where I was going to stop, my brain has taken the cue and gone into early shut down.

It could be all three.

In any case it seems pointless to bash my head against a brick wall for now, and while I’m kind of in the middle of a section, it’s probably a better place to stop anyway. Besides, if I don’t write anything else until this novel’s finished my portfolio will look rather starved.

So, decision made, I’m settling down to thrash out a short story I’ve had gestating in my mind for a while and now feels ready for birth. I’m really going to go for it! Hack away ’till done. Edit ’till done. Boom! It feels refreshing just thinking about it!

Then, rather than dive straight back into the novel, I thought I’d do a little bit of world-building. I’m thinking specifically of the characters. These guys aren’t exactly writing themselves here, and I don’t think I’ve got to know them yet. Rather than wait for the second draft, I’ll get a better understanding now, and apply that going forward.

I’ll update with a post about exactly how I did that when I get round to it.

For now, I’m hoping that a change really is as good as a rest, and the shift in scenery will see my writing instincts wake up again.

What do you do when you feel yourself flagging?

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  1. Craig O’Connor
    June 20th, 2010 at 21:40 | #1

    When I feel myself flagging, I used to move onto something else (ah the good old multi-projecting days…) but now when i feel myself flagging I just stop. And probably play videogames.

    While it may be a little chaotic (and is dangerous if you’re notorious for not finishing things, like me) working on multiple projects can be very rewarding. it also keeps you writing. Back in the day, so to speak, I used to feel like “Ah, I’m not really in a wasp whisperer mindset right now, I’m in more of a Finity mindset.” so I’d move on from one piece to another. Or as you say, sometimes you can thrash out a short story while you’re between mindsets so to speak, just to take the edge off.

    Stopping writing altogether though, thats a bad idea, as we all know!

    • July 3rd, 2010 at 07:20 | #2

      Yes, I think two projects is enough. And not two novels! Writing one is hard enough!

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