I have been working away at the edit and I’m finding it harder and harder to soldier on. These edits are taking f o r e v e r and it’s not hard to know why – I’ve lost my oomph. I’ve been working on Enslaved for over five months and I can’t see the forest for the trees. I’m getting lost in the details, in the minutia of words and sentences, and I can’t stand back to see the story these sentences comprise. I’m not so much stuck for ideas as stuck for inspiration, that is, I know what I have to write but I’m stumped if I can express it on a page. This state of affairs is extremely frustrating and I just can’t see any way out of it.
Unfortunately, the only way I have found to cure this is to just force yourself to work. Stare at that blank page until you go all cross-eyed and feel sure a headache is coming on. Force yourself to hold your fingers over your keyboard, write words that you know you will change, just get back into the flow of it.
So what to do about the lack of inspiration? Unfortunately, writing is work and just like any work, it’s hard. You have your bad days and I think the main thing is not to beat yourself up if the words aren’t flowing. This happens to everyone and the best thing to do is soldier through it. It’s so hard and it’s demoralizing and you just want to tear your hair out but there’s nothing for it. We must soldier on.
So I will take my bat and ball and stumble to the crease once more. Enslaved must be finished and I’m just the person to tackle it.
By the way, if anyone has any suggestions as to other methods of curing this, I’d love to hear them.
– originally written for the newsletter of Society of Women Writers South Australia Inc.