The internet has exploded with opportunities for those of us pouring out heart and soul into beloved characters and imagined worlds. One of my biggest problems with this gateway to all things written, is the distraction potential. Before I realize the danger, I have too many irons in the fire. With millions of chances to rub cyber-shoulders with other word lovers and thousands of contests to show and better your work, how do you choose witch to ignore and which to latch onto with both hands. If anyone out there has the answer, I would love to hear it, because I find the world of wordage to be daunting and hard to navigate. Fun, but distressing.
My current mode of operation is to pick few at a time and see where it goes. I went through the query/pitch contest #pitmad on twitter and participated in #postitforward. #PostItForward helped me to refine my 35-word pitch. Hopefully I will be better prepared for #NestPitch, the contest being held the first of April. I even managed to find a Beta reader for my Novel Finder’s Keepers, while tweeting about queries on twitter. But the number of rejections, no matter how polite, and the multiple edits weigh me down at times.
Feeling the writers depression heavy on my shoulders, I decided to distract my mind with an outside art project. I love all things artistic. It really doesn’t matter what type of art, from music to cake design, from paintings to wood crafting, from beaded necklaces to knitting … And especially writing. I love it all. 😛
But the end of a story leave a kind of undertow, a empty space that needs to be filled or else. I have read as my fellow authors mourn the end of there current story, so I felt partially prepared. Still … I was shocked at the depth of my fall, like an adrenaline crash. I am ashamed to admit that I spent a day or two moving around in a kind of haze, feeling as if I didn’t know where to go, what to do, or who to turn to. I didn’t really want to be around others. I didn’t want to read any of my favorite authors or watch my favorite shows.
I looked at my mother and finally said, “I am stuck in a writer’s depression.” I knew what the problem was, but that didn’t mean I knew how to fix it. I didn’t want to start another story. I didn’t want to send of query letters or read through my novel for the hundredth time. But once I admitted out loud that there was an issue, I was able to stop and think. I needed to create something. I needed to immerse myself in something other than writing and entertainment. Creating a baby outfit from yarn seemed like fun.
It all started with those adorable little shoes. I had never attempted to knit, and I am not that great at following all the jargon. My friend Debbie and her wife are expecting a bouncing baby girl soon, so I jumped in feet first – as I always do 😛 – and managed an outfit perfect for a pre-me. Since that baby is following the normal format, my creation may end up as clothing for her doll babies. Next time I will shot for the 3-6 month old size. lol
Correctly sized or not, my knitting project did the trick. I felt energized, able to start editing and fleshing out my second novel. At times I still feel so new to the world of writing that I imagine phrase like ‘wet behind the ears’ and ‘the paint isn’t dry’ are stamped on my forehead. Not that little things like lack of experience would ever stop me.
The worlds created by the voices in my head have been building for years. Little thoughts that I would jot down and forget. Ideas that I would use to set the landscape of my dreams as I feel asleep, but nothing more. Finding out who I was after my life was turned upside down with Multiple Sclerosis was a hard road. My worlds, my characters, and my imagination saved my life. I had my mother by my side feeding my creativity with art projects that I could work on from the bed that held me hostage for years.
With her help and the constant stimulation of the projects she provided, I slowly became a person again. I found my worlds, my voices, and my creations. With each downward slide from a writers high, I know that I can turn to her and she will push me to create, to live. Everyone should have someone willing to give that push. A family member, a childhood friend, or cyber writing buddy. Find that person willing to push you out of the downward slide from your writing highs. Some willing to push you to create!
Happy wordage everyone