So yesterday’s post told you how I had started feeling I was no longer a writer and, basically, going through a long dark night of the soul filled with social networking and the need to pop coloured bubbles. Now I shall tell you why it happened, and, more importantly, the conclusion.
Why? Basically I fell out of love with writing because I fell out of love with my work in progress, my ‘magnum opus’, the novel that had become the entire focus of my writing life – and sometimes the rest of my life too – for the past five years. And because I felt I was going nowhere with the gargantuan epic – the story of one man’s life, I had become disheartened and full of self doubt at my own skill. I was also getting poorer because no money was flowing in.
Writers should write for the love of it, not for money. But if that’s the only way you get your income, then by God, it matters! You can’t fill cupboards just with love. So I suppose there was also a bit of panic adding to the mix. Looking at it all from a practical, living in the real world angle, Despenser had become, to use a lot of unwriterly cliches, a millstone around my neck, a white elephant, an albatross, a ball and chain around the ankle of my creativity.*
So, I have decided, for the time being, to place Despenser on the back burner.**
Yes, that’s right. My former one and only passion is going to have to be relegated from having top priority for a while.
BUT… Despenser fans, do not panic. I am not abandoning it. It will still be written (It has to be!!). It’s just that it and I need a little space to work things out. In the meantime I plan to write just like I used to – for the fun of it. For example, while I was still working on Despenser, I took a little time aside to revamp my old MA thesis novella – now known as The Devil To Pay. I enjoyed writing every word, the energy flowed, and it got written very quickly. That’s what I need right now: to smash out some rip-roaring stories that require no research (or very little). I need to fall in love all over again. And hopefully I will be able to publish them and earn some money!
It is also a trick, a cunning plan. By no longer feeling under pressure to get Despenser done, and by leaving it waiting on the side, I may feel encouraged every now and again to have a little look, and maybe a little write. Maybe. But no pressure, mind. It may then, soon, one day, regain its former allure and tempt me back with a new vision, a better storyline, crackling energy. Actually, no ‘may’ about it, I am sure it will. But until then I need to refresh my creative spirit and make some damn money.
So that’s about the long and short of it. Since I made my decision, I already feel my creativity starting to flow again and I’m enjoying putting together some ‘what ifs’. In fact, I’m excited, I’m hopeful, I’m no longer scared to write… and that’s just how it should be.
* I think it was the responsibility of ‘getting it right’ and then feeling that I wasn’t worthy of the job. I know, I know!
** I will still, however, be researching and doing blog posts for Lady Despenser’s Scribery – just more for fun than anything else.