6/1/18

You're NOT a Writer


I always struggle to start a new story, maybe it's because my brain is still caught up in my last work, or maybe I just have commitment issues when it comes to continuing a new WIP.


This year, however, I have found myself struggling even more than usual to find the motivation to sit down and just write.

My brain felt fried. I assumed it was due to some stress I was dealing with, so I let myself slack off on writing, only to find that when I sat back down again to write that I had nothing.

I sat down at my desk, put in my earbuds, turned on some music at low volume, opened Word, and then just stared at that blinking cursor.
Minutes turned into hours. Hours turned into days, and days turned into weeks. Occasionally, I would get an idea and finally type a sentence or two onto my screen, but still, it was going so painfully slow.

After a while, I realized I was waiting, which sounds and is ridiculous.

Waiting for what? My fairy godmother to appear in my room, wave her wand and sing "bippity-boppity-boo, your writing woes are through"?

Truth is, I was waiting for inspiration, and inspiration wasn't coming. I fell into a trap that so many have fallen into before me.

After realizing this, I forced myself to write.

And I liked it. I didn't realize how much I missed just writing. I had forgotten how getting completely lost in your story felt.

But it wasn't and still isn't easy. Some days I have to force myself to actually write all over again. Some days I feel like I'm not getting anywhere with my WIP. Some days I want to delete every single word.

But other days, I love my story. Other days I want nothing else but to write and slip into my own world where anything is possible. Some days the magical possibilities of my WIP make me forget all about the trouble of forcing myself to write. And I realize how lucky I am to like writing, and how much I adore writing.

So for all of y'all reading this, if your Word file looks like this every time you open it:

Just know that you can do it. Put your fingers on your keyboard and write your heart and soul out.

In the words of Dan Poynter, "If you wait for inspiration to write you're not a writer, you're a waiter."

Have you ever found yourself being a waiter instead of a writer? 

Happy Writing, 

46 comments:

  1. I've been feeling this way lately, I'm afraid. After flying through two massive, beloved novels, I've started a new one that is not anywhere near as precious to my heart, and it's hard. I've written less than 5,000 words in ten days, and that's a hard feeling when that was my daily pace on those other two stories. But. I'm learning that you don't always have to write at a superhuman speed. And I'm learning to be okay with that. :) I'm glad you're able to get back into writing--it's hard, but oh so worth it.

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    1. I know the feeling! Give it time and effort and it will come around. <3

      Thank you, I'm super glad too, it's so worth it.

      Delete
  2. I needed this today, Gray, thanks so much for putting it into words <3

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  3. Wow, this is so inspiring. Thank you for writing this, Gray. Lately I’ve been struggling with continuing my story, and I’ve just been waiting for inspiration to strike me. But you’re right, we are lucky to like writing.

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    1. Thank you for reading!
      I'm often in the same spot, but I've found that making myself write at least a hundred words in one sitting a day helps motivate me overall.

      We are so so lucky to be writing, words are so wonderful and powerful.

      Delete
  4. Man, that's my writing life right now. :\ I just need to push myself to put pen to paper— even if it's just a stream of consciousness. It may come out as complete trash but even that can be inspiring.

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    1. Yes, it isn't a pleasant feeling, but thankfully one can overcome it! It's amazing how many ideas you get in the middle of writing.

      Delete
  5. It's so true. Sometimes you've just got to force yourself to start in on it. I know the feeling. I'm kind of having to do that right now. =P
    You've got this girl!

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    1. Yep. :P

      Thank you! You've got it too!! <3

      Delete
  6. So tue and something I needed to hear because I've been a waiter for too long. Time to get serious and write. Love this so much! <3

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  7. Yes, this is just way too true ;D Writing is... just writing, whether you feel it or not. And for that reason I don't believe in Writer's Block... rather I don't allow myself to acknowledge it and give in to it.

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    1. That's so wise not to believe in Writer's Block, the more I think about it, the more I'm inclined to agree on it's nonexistence.

      Delete
    2. You'd be joining a minority ;) But as we both know... that doesn't mean one is wrong just because there are few of them ;D

      Delete
    3. By now I'm kind of getting use to that. XD
      Very true.

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  8. I've been doing this a lot! Just staring at the cursor.
    This helped though.

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  9. I'm still in the editing process of mine......

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  10. So inspiring! I have found myself to be a waiter, but being a writer is so much more rewarding and thrilling!

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    1. Thank you! I'm often in the same boat, but being a writer certainly is more thrilling.

      Delete
  11. I'm glad you found your love of writing again! Sometimes it's hard to push past roadblocks, but it's definitely worth it! Keep going strong!

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  12. That's an awesome post Gray. XD. I love the cursor gif. XD and yes! I agree with everything you said.

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  13. This may not help for fiction, but one of my previous (awesome) writing teachers taught me how to get rid of the blinking cursor of death!

    Open a NEW document (NOT your WIP, essay, term paper or anything important), and just write EVERYTHING that comes into your brain, even if it's like...ice skating dogs. Whatever is in your brain, just spit it out on that paper and get it out of your head. Do this for as long as is necessary, and then close that document and open your WIP, essay, term paper, etc. Your brain (theoretically) will have cleared up a bit and it might be a little easier to get your thoughts down more clearly.

    Hope that helps!

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    1. That is really helpful! Thank you!!

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  14. I've been up against a wall when it comes to writing, as well. Thank you so much for the encouragement. <3

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  15. Yes to this post! Often I have to force myself to write, but I find when I do, magic happens and I very quickly get excited about my story again. :)

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    1. I'm glad you liked it!
      YES, I love writing magic, it's so amazing.

      Delete
  16. Oh my gosh. Thank you. I always was so scared to admit that I can't write. I'm almost always a waiter. Thank you for having the courage to share :)

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    1. I've been scared to admit it before as well, it's funny how we often keep our struggles quiet and never realize everyone else struggles with it as well. ^_^

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  17. I too do a lot of waiting. My mind blanks a lot, so often I'm scanning Pinterest and listening to music trying to figure out what words or emotions I want. Also, my plotter streak tends to get in the way and I wind up with oodles of notes that need to be gathered into one spot...grrr.

    Wonderful post, Gray!

    Catherine

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    1. Ah, same! I hope you can work though it. <3

      Thank you!!

      Delete
  18. Thank you for this post! I'm kind of in a slow zone for writing right now... thanks for sharing how you worked through this.
    I can't believe May has gone by so fast! Hope you have a awesome June! :D
    -Brooklyne
    bensshowersofblessings.blogspot.com

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    1. Thank you for reading! I hope you get out of your slump soon.

      I know right? It's mind-blowing!

      Delete
  19. Totally described me. I've been forcing myself to write as part of the 100 for 100 on Go Teen Writers and it has helped so much! I'm FINALLY writing again!! And remembering how much I love it!! <3

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    1. I'm so glad that's helping you! I've heard of the 100 for 100, and it sounds like a great motivator. ^_^

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  20. That title though xD

    Yeah, I can relate to this. I want to try some writing this month. I know that if I write something down, I would like it.

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    1. It was suppose to be a head-turner. XD

      Same here!

      Delete
  21. its very inspiring !!! i really need the inspiration , i feel a little stuck with my writing these days!!! <3 Thank you !!!! Good Job!!!!

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    1. Thank you! I hope you get out of your writer's rut soon!! <3

      Delete
  22. Ahhh, I’ve totally felt this way before. I’ll open up my word document and nothing comes to me. It stinks... But you’re totally right. Sometimes it takes forcing yourself to write the words, and I’ve had to do that a lot, especially getting back into writing this year, because I feel like I was in a slump. Thanks for sharing, this was inspiring!
    ~ riley aline

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    1. Yes, it's such an awful feeling!
      But forcing yourself is super helpful. ^_^

      Thank you for reading!

      Delete

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