You know what really sucks? Writer’s block. Which, yeah, is common knowledge, but when it hits hard, it hits really hard.
I’ve been trying extra hard to write something fiction-related recently, but I just can’t seem to stick with an idea that I’m passionate enough to write about. I start one story, try to write through the looming feelings of apathy toward the story, and then stop writing it altogether, knowing that I won’t be able to develop it into something that I could be truly proud of. It’s not even a self-esteem thing where I don’t believe I can turn the story into something great, it’s just that I don’t have the drive to turn that particular idea into a full-fledged story.
I often come up with ideas that I know could be a good story, but it’s just not the story that I want to tell, and I feel like that’s why I lose steam on certain ideas. I’ve had stories that I loved writing because I fell in love with the idea, the characters that were born from said idea, and the way everything came together while I was constructing it. From there, I was able to put more of my heart into making it something I’d even want to read, myself. Lately, however, my brain has been giving me ideas where it’s like “well, I guess that would be really entertaining?” That just ain’t acceptable.
When I start to feel this way about my stories, I start to get INCREDIBLY self-conscious, and start to SERIOUSLY doubt myself as a writer. I’ve told myself for so many years that writing is what I want to do for the rest of my life, and I still believe that, to this day. I get so flustered knowing this because I keep thinking that, if I truly want to be a good writer, surely I should have more passion about my ideas than what I’ve been showing, right? I mean, I maybe have one or two short stories that are actually edited to a point where maybe I could try to get them published, but other than that, it’s not like I’ve actually fully completed a giant writing project (except for a novella that I wrote a few years back, but still have a TON of stuff to edit in it.)
Oh great, writing about this is making me even more anxious about it! Splendid!
But I feel like maybe it’s because I’m trying to pigeon-hole myself into this idea that I have to write short stories first before I write longer novellas/novels again, because that’s the progression I took while I was in school. This can’t possibly make any sense to me now because, while I was in school, I dreaded writing short stories. There’s so much story you have to put in such a small space, and it makes me feel so confined. Granted, I know I could write a decent short story if I had to, but I don’t have the passion to write them as much as I have it to write longer pieces. As the semesters went on, my fiction writing professors encouraged us to work on novellas if we wanted to, and I felt way more motivated about writing those. Something I enjoy about writing is spending enough time with my characters to see them develop over time, and with short stories, it’s not that it isn’t possible to do that, it’s just that there isn’t as much time to do it.
Regardless, I know I have to push myself to find an idea, but not too hard, because forcing the ideas could lead to being unmotivated about it. Even if the idea comes from me just writing a bunch of gibberish onto a blank word document until something happens, then gosh darn it, I should just do it. Writing stories is the one thing that gives me the highest satisfaction, and though it pains me that I’ve been distant from it for so long, I have to jump into it with the same drive I had when I did it more actively, or else I’d already be setting myself up to fail.
Because I’m very determined to keep up a good schedule for fiction writing, I’ll be posting a lot of sneak peeks from some writing prompts that I find online on my Patreon page. I’d love to have you as a pledge over there, and I’ll be sure to make it worth your while by letting you in on what projects I have going on, as well as posting a ton of behind the scenes content! Your support, no matter how much, would help me get closer and closer to my goals as a writer/content creator!
If you’ve ever felt something similar to this about the projects that you work on, let me know in the comments! I’d love to hear some inspiring stories about how you overcame it, or how you’re still trying to overcome it!