Don’t you just hate not writing?
Especially during November. Even if you’re not doing NaNoWriMo, it’s impossible not to feel the galactic pressure that thousands of writers around the world are writing more than you are.
That kind of makes you feel like crap.
I’m doing NaNoWriMo, and within the first week, I fell behind by three days. Three days might not sound like a lot, but oh my goodness gracious, at 1,667 words a day, that’s a lot of words to catch up on.
So, last week I told my friend I’d give him $50 if I wasn’t caught up by midnight tonight.
I’ve been incrementally catching up all week, hitting huge word counts each day. Then I got sick and missed two days.
Funny how lack of sleep affects your health.
Yesterday I wrote about 5,400 words. I did it in three huge writing blocks, one in the early morning, and two in the evening.
I only need to write 2,200 words today before midnight to be completely caught up, so I’m pretty sure I’m safe.
But seriously. There are some days I’m eager to write, and others where I suddenly become amazing at household chores because I’ll do ANYTHING that’s not writing.
I know if I don’t write, some reasons are legit, most are total bullshit. Sometimes I blame “creative blockage,” “I just need a little bit of space from my characters,” or “writer’s block.”
When in reality, it’s usually just fear or laziness and I’m justifying it with logic to make myself feel a lot better about myself. Saying, “I’m not going to follow my dream of finishing this novel because I hate writing right now,” can be difficult to say to myself.
So, I came up with a list of actual reasons writers don’t write.
All the “creative juices aren’t flowing” bullshit out of the way:
- You’re scared that when you start typing, what comes out will be the written equivalent of a pubescent voice crack
- Your computer has internet access… and it turns out there’s a lot of websites on the internet
- Making you a modern day Marco Polo
- You had a long day at work and you’re brain is exhausted… for a month and a half straight
- You’re scared you’ll prove to yourself that you’re not able to finish a novel, so you fizzle out to save yourself the seemingly inevitable pain of failure
- You just had a large meal. Now you need to digest
- You have a certifiable case of FOMO
- And all your friends are having fun. Right now. Without you
- Your main character reminds you too much of yourself
- So now you hate him/her
- You’re too busy on the phone with your therapist because your main character exposed so much about yourself
- You’re in the middle of plotting your next best-seller
- Netflix just released that one childhood movie you haven’t thought about in a decade. But now you MUST WATCH IT
- You decided you hate writing
- You feel untalented and outshined
- So you’re scared to put yourself out there, even to yourself
- Finding a consistent time to write would take like 25 minutes to plan. And that’s way too long
- You started a new diet and exercise routine that really eats up your time and energy (pun intended)
- Your regular writing spot is either taken or not an option today. Well, there goes today’s word count
- You haven’t outlined your novel so you have no idea where you’re going next
- You decided to pick up a book in the same genre as the one you’re writing, and you realize that they’re 100 million times better than you
- You’re bored with your story, and that scares you, so you’d prefer to ignore it and hope the feeling goes away
- You’re too lazy to keep up with the daily word count
- You picked up a new hobby, basket weaving, and it’s taking up the majority of your time — because it’s easier to do and you don’t hate yourself when you see the finished product
If you’ve not discovered this already, writing is an incredibly self-exposing task. You’re forced to face your fears and insecurities. And if you aren’t facing them, chances are you’re hiding.
Your writing, and your life, will be much better once you face your inner demons.
Question of the day: Why don’t you write? (For me it’s either Youtube or Netflix. I freaking love funny videos, it’s unhealthy)