Nov 22, 2010

NaNo . . . NOT SO MUCH!

Oh, sure!  I signed up and had all kinds of ideas and goals set for myself. I even spent three days at a fantastic writer's retreat in Park City Utah with a bunch of my writing buddies and when I came home . . . NOTHING!!! Everything I managed to hammer out while at the retreat was deleted, rejected, trashed and forgotten. In other words, it was crap.

So, it's been three weeks since NaNoWriMo started and I have a grand total of 5488 words. I just can't seem to concentrate. I've tried free writing, editing other work and even skipping around from one project to another and still NOTHING!!  I'm so frustrated. I've had bouts of writer's block before but never this long and to this extent.

What's wrong with me????

I guess I could blame it on my muse, but she's really taken enough abuse this year. I really feel like something inside me is broken. I just can't figure out what it is. I wish there was a creative, brain doctor who could diagnose me, give me a happy writing pill and send me on my way. Wouldn't that be nice?

Anyone out there suffering from the same disease?  

Any ideas how I can "FIX ME" or at least figure out what the problem is?


  1. I'm so sorry you're dealing with this, Christine.

    I have to wonder. . .do you think that maybe this is trying to tell you something, that maybe it's time to take an actual, intentional break from writing and focus on something else for a bit? I've heard of this happening to people, then they get recharged after a while.

    Sometimes there are other things going on that need the attention that would otherwise go to writing. It could be as simple as letting the creative part of your brain rest for a while. I know mine revolts if I try to overwork it.

    Good luck!

  2. Well, if you include the words in this blog, your total went up by 218 words. :) (Trying to find the bright side)

  3. Okay, Mr. Morgan's words made me laugh out loud, but that isn't the point here, is it. *focusing* Sometimes I read Julia Cameron's books, sometimes I do things that will fill my well--read a book, visit a museum or place I love, listen to music, etc. Sometimes it helps to talk to someone about my story. It gets me excited about the characters and what is heppening to them. I will often have an "Oh my gosh I love that idea" moment that gets me going again.

    Either way, I think you need your well filled. When it's empty, there isn't anything to pull from.

    Hope there is something here that might help. Know that there isn't anything wrong with you. All writers face things like this at one time or another. You are not alone.

  4. You and me both, girl. Do what I'm doing. Take a break. Seriously. Without guilt. Scrapbook, read, play the games you love, or just watch tv. But let it rest and refuel yourself. There is NOTHING wrong with taking a sabbatical for a bit. Especially after what we've gone through. We're depressed and you know what? That's okay. Do what you need to to feel better. Then start up at the beginning of the year with new goals and new resolve. That's what I'm going to do.

  5. You're 5000+ words further along than I am. I signed up and had an outline and all that, but when the time came, I found an excuse not to participate in NaNo (I told myself I was prioritizing, that I needed to edit and submit the other one first). But you'll get there! You probably just need a fun, relaxing time with family and friends over Thanksgiving and you'll be back at it and finding no time to Christmas shop because you'll be writing!

  6. I'm having the same problem. In my case, I think it is just because I am too busy. When I do find a moment to write, it's the last thing I want to do because I am too tired. Take a break if you need it. I often find if I do something creative that is entirely unrelated to writing, it gets those stories flowing again.

  7. I'm sorry! (((HUGS)))

    Personally, I haven't gone back and read what I wrote at the retreat because I'm pretty sure it's crap, too. But I promised myself that THIS TIME, I was going to write the entire book, beginning to end, an entire rough draft, without allowing myself to worry about whether it was good or not, without going back and re-writing or re-thinking or editing or anything. If the whole thing sucks when I'm done, then I can scrap it all and start over. But I'm not allowing myself to make judgment calls on whether it's original enough or good enough or well-written enough or even if it's what I want to say or not until I'm done with the first draft.

    I don't think any writing we do is wasted, even if it eventually goes the way of all the earth, because it's good practice. Maybe you just need to write without judging the quality of your writing until you're done with the book.

    Anyway, it's an idea. I have no idea if it'll work for you, I just thought I'd throw it out there because it's worked for me so far this month.

    I know how you feel, though. I've definitely BTDT. I hope you find something that brings you peace of mind, either through taking a break from writing or through breaking through that block.