Tuesday, October 9, 2012

Withdrawal and Renewal

After September's pressure to write-to-deadline, I took a week off from writing. Should be enough, right? Yes and no. In preparing to begin a new novel in all its raw and rough glory, I've struggled. A book as complex and large as my last one locked me into editor mode for a number of years. I did take a one month break to do NANOWRIMO a couple of years ago. The internal editor screamed at me the entire time. I persevered, used tons of imaginary duct tape, and finished that fun project. Then I stored it in a file and ungagged the internal editor to get back to work on the first.

One week off led to two. The finished story continued to haunt me, even as I tried to brainstorm for the new one (since I'm merging two old story ideas into one new one.) So my question for you, loyal readers, is this: How do you release your internal editor in order to begin a new project unhindered? Do you have any tips or advice?

While I have finished other stories before, none have undergone the length and breadth of editing this last one did. In some ways, I fear I won't top those efforts with anything new. In some ways, I don't want to leave the world of this other book or the characters. Am I hopeless case?


  1. It's very hard to let go sometimes. That feels like abandoning your babies. It can be easier for me to start work on a short story before moving into full new character/world mode. The last time it took months for me to finally settle into a new full length work.

  2. I've never fully let go of any of my projects. They just wait for me to return to them after I spend time with their sibling. Switching from creative to editing mode can be a hard transition. I can't do both without difficulty. In a way, you have to cleanse your palate. I read or watch TV, something non project related but inspirational. Soon ideas begin to take form (I hope). Anyway, the process is unique to the individual. I wish you luck. May the muse be with you.