Wednesday, April 27, 2011

Good Days and Bad Days

Anyone who has been writing for more than a day knows that sometimes writing is wonderful and sometimes it's not. Sometimes it's easy and sometimes it's not. Sometimes it's fun and sometimes it's not.

The bad days can come at the slightest provocation: a discouraging critique, a rejection, a negative review. Even going through the motions of surviving the social media circus can throw an entire writing day off kilter.

For me, yesterday was one of the bad days. By trying to do everything, I was effectively doing nothing, and to complicate matters, real life got in the way as well. I woke up fully intending to dive into chapter six of Unmade, but by the end of the day I hadn't written a single word.

Are any of you ever paralyzed by days like that? Sometimes during this time of year I'm seized by writing mania, and I can't stop working without feeling like the whole world will end. So when I get a day like yesterday and I don't write anything at all, the guilt starts clawing its way down my throat to my belly.

Those are the times when I really need to remember why I'm writing in the first place. For every negative there are a half dozen positives: the joy of discovery, the feel of accomplishment, the thrill of improving bit by bit; the characters who teach us about ourselves, the worlds that spark our creativity, the plots that draw us deeper and deeper; meeting someone else who loves to write, hearing back from someone who loved our work, connecting to people through words in ways were weren't able to before. All that and more.

Today was a good writing day. Today I wrote a lot of words (and some of them were even good). Today I'm thinking about all the reasons I keep pressing on.

How are you today? Are you caught up in the excitement of writing or are you in that moment when you need to remember why you keep coming back, day after day? Whichever place you're in, take a moment to celebrate the reasons you love to write.


  1. I'm doing well, thank you. :) No writing for me today as I had to work. If I'd had the day off though, I'd have probably done some reading. I've got the bug! :D

    What keeps me writing is the pleasure I get from actualizing the crazy stuff I've got knocking around in my head. It's incredibly satisfying - addicting, really.

  2. That's a very good reason to write! What are you reading?

  3. It is so true about good days and bad days coming from such small events! Especially if you're not totally grounded to begin with. I'll be honest, Audrey. I had one bad day where I posted something (a comment on your blog, I think) and maybe a facebook post? Anyway, I posted something and you didn't respond, and I somehow convinced myself you were mad at me and shunning me. Which is RIDICULOUS because I hadn't done anything and you hadn't actually given me any reason to think that. But for some reason I did. And it affected my writing mood, something totally in my head that I just made up!

    I'm only telling you this because I think it's funny.

  4. Ooooooh my goodness, you and I are way too alike! Not that that specifically has ever happened, but whenever you're really busy and don't have time to chat on Skype I'm always secretly afraid that you just don't want to talk to me. Are we neurotic or what? For the record, I have never been mad at you. I think you are awesome.

  5. Ahahahaha! Ohmigosh, that makes me feel so much better! So I'm not alone. XD Too funny!

    Also for the record, our conversations are fabulous--they are always enjoyable and inspiring and always motivate me to write! When I am in a slump, my first instinct is to wish to talk to you. I think you're terrific. <3

    And this is really quite funny...

  6. Uh oh, now I'm conflicted. Half of me wants you not to be in any slumps ever so that you'll finish Blair's story more quickly and let me read it. The other half wants you to be in a slump more often so you'll want to talk to me more. Can't have both. *pout*

  7. You guys are too cute. Hugs. It's funny that you brought the whole neurosis thing up, Ico, because I get the same way. You are so totally not alone. ;)

    Audrey, I'm reading an e-book of the steamy, paranormal romance variety. Of course. *eyeroll* I'm meaning to start one of Sharon Shinn's pretty soon though. It's been sitting on my table for quite some time now. You've probably read it - "Troubled Waters."

  8. Actually, I haven't gotten my hands on that yet. I really want to read it though. That and "Gateway."