Wednesday, November 08, 2006

making a write mess of things

I think I may have given up writing. Probably not forever, but for now yes. It's like this, you see...
Last week I signed up for NaNoWriMo on the advice of my good friend Reluctant Nomad who, incidentally has become an even better friend 'cos he really did post his carrot cake recipe on his blog.
Anyhoo... it seemed like a great idea. I had a storyline complete with beginning, middle and end, and everything!
So I started writing.
And I was trying to keep up with the blogging too because I feel it's a bit rude when I don't visit the people who are nice enough to visit me.
And I was working late - at my job, that is.
And I was trying to make dinners and do laundry and keep the house clean.
And... by Sunday evening I had written about 4500 words of utter crap, and was feeling really stressed about the whole thing.

So I did what I do best: I threw a tantrum. It was a mini-tantrum, but a tantrum nonetheless. A sort of "I don't know why I'm bothering / this is a pointless waste of time / I'm not going to write anymore so there!" tantrum.

For the rest of the evening, I didn't write. I closed my laptop and read a book in between making dinner.
I didn't write on Monday either.
By Tuesday I realised that, y'know, I'm the one causing myself the stress. I actually feel better having let go of one of the things that I was stressing about.

And therein lies the key - not "giving up" but "letting go". It's something I have never been able to do very well and it has caused me all manner of problems in life. Perhaps this is the beginning of learning how to let stuff go.

I'm sure at some point I will write again and in the meantime, I don't think I'll be leaving Blogland any time soon. But perhaps I just need to take some pressure off myself for a while.

That's my excuse, and I'm sticking to it.


Fence said...

I signed up on impulse too, but have only written 700 words. I just find myself distracted too easily lately.

kyknoord said...

Forcing yourself to write out of some nebulous sense of obligation seems singularly pointless to me. You have the right not to write.

anne said...

Let me repeat something I just read on the NaNoWriMo page: "you rock for even trying."
Keep it a pleasure, not an obligation.

buddess said...

That was something that I was also thinking about. I know that I have a story inside me that is just bursting to come out, but to find the time to sit and write it is just simply impossible. As long as you keep on blogging, I will keep on visiting!!!!

Spookie the Warrior said...

You do that. Go and read and soak in a bubble bath with some wine and take some pictures and a nice quiet walk when you find you have spare time. Don't try to cram something in there - spend it on yourself a little. It's important and I think you need some "Terri Time" at this stage.

Reluctant Nomad said...

Don't do it out of obligation - stick to it if you enjoy it. I know that a writer needs a lot of discipline and discipline isn't always that great fun but don't do it if it's going to stress you out horribly.

I also registered for NaNoWriMo and had planned it all out but didn't get down to writing even one word. It's too late, I think, to start now. I've disappointed myself but, hey, I'm used to that.

Let me know what you think of the cake. :-)

beadinggalinMS said...

I am soo bad I read your whole post, I feel your pain and the relief in letting it go and all I can think of is carrot cake recipe!! Please forgive me?? :)

When the time is right the words will flow from your finger tips.

Ben O. said...

Oh, I did that Nanowrimo thing last year and it totally killed my motivation and set me back months.

No way I'm doing it this year.

Good luck though.


Ben O.

Don't ever leave blogland.

Chitty said...

Even if you "let go" for a little while, the stories will still be inside you. And when the time is right, you can share them with the world.

Dawn said...

Terri - there's a latent writer trapped in every Aries person so I totally know how you feel - as far as letting go, I agree ... I have come to think that when you let go, that is actually when you are most in control because you are making a conscious choice - the paradox of losing it to let go - when we are out of control that is when we are most in control ... maybe? I have this quote on the side of my computer screen - I LET GO OF THE NEED TO BE "ON" ALL THE TIME.
Take care. xox

Terri said...

Fence - Distracted eh? I'd better keep this comment short then :)

Kyknoord - Is that your clever way of working in your word of the day? Now I have to go google 'nebulous'...

Anne - tee hee, I rock :-)

Buddess - Deal!

Spookie - Yes I do. Now I just need to figure out what it is I like to do as opposed to what I do out of habit or obligation. Should be interesting.

Nomad - Cinderella has been noticeably quiet on the cake front. I'm hoping she'll get the urge to bake this weekend. Don't beat yourself up over not doing nanowrimo this year. Maybe we should start our own version of it? "International Novel Writing When And If You Want To". Hm, not so catchy...

Beads - LOL! Did you make the cake then? How was it?

Ben O - Killing motivation sort of defeats the object of the thing, doesn't it? ps I could never leave you guys ;)

Chitty - I'm thinking of doing the same thing with work. You know, not work for a while then when I'm ready I'll work that much better. Having some trouble selling the idea to my boss though.

Dawn - It's very true. I think the reason I feel better than I did is that I made the choice. Took my destiny in my own hands (so to speak, if a little melodramatic!)

Thanks for your support, guys :)

Bosbefok said...

Hey T

Dont Fuss the small stuff :-) You will write when youre good and ready. Im sure you will have something to Write about after this weekend... Cummon the Bokke !
I got to meet some of the Boks today and they said just for you they will score under the sticks on our end of the field !! And they signed a SA flag for us to wave at those that will be watching from afar.... !!

jason evans said...

It's not an excuse. It makes perfect sense. Nanowrimo is an enormous undertaking. I'm not sure anyone without the opportunity to write full time could accomplish it. I know I couldn't.

LiVEwiRe said...

'Letting go' has a much less negative sound to it. Besides, sometimes even things we typically enjoy can cause major stress, it's up to us to determine the pace that is set. And tantrums always help!

angel said...

letting go obviously worked like a charm- judging by your word count...

Dawn said...

Hey terri - just popping in to see how you are doing. Hope all is lekker, my friend. Have a good week.

Terri said...

Bosbefok - Well they did score under the sticks. Pity they didn't do that a few more times eh?

Jason - This, from the man who seems able to multitask in a way that puts women to shame??!

LiVEwIre - Yep, the tantrums are my favourite part, hehe!

Angel - Uh, that would be the word count that hasn't moved in over a week...

Dawn - Hi Doll! I'm still here ;)