One story at a time

Yeah, so…this is happening. It’s the first of many steps in Operation: Do Something.

After starting and abandoning a handful of ill-fated projects over the past year, I really started to think that I just wasn’t cut out for this whole writing thing. It was a bit jarring to realize that, at that point, writing made me genuinely unhappy. Not writing–or, perhaps more accurately, thinking about how I should be writing when I wasn’t–was making me ridiculously anxious, but when I forced myself to write…ugh. I hated the results. I couldn’t even come up with blog posts that I didn’t completely despise. To be blunt, it was a clusterfuck of epic proportions.

I was caught in a loop of self doubt and procrastination, and it completely destroyed what little productivity I had. So, I made a promise to myself: if I gave myself time to do nothing, and felt no compulsion whatsoever to start working on any sort of creative writing project, then I’d consider it a sign that I should approach writing as a hobbyist (at best), and not a prospective professional. I’d have to start thinking of a Plan B, when it came to long-term goals. But if I felt even the slightest tinge of inspiration, an itching in my fingers to fill up blank sheets of paper with words upon words, I had to commit to writing in earnest. No excuses, no slacking, no nonsense. Just writing.

I’ll let you take a wild guess what happened there.

Story a Day seems like the best way to ease myself back into the writing groove. I tried it a few years ago with stellar results, but I didn’t capitalize on the momentum I’d built up over that month and in the end I was right back where I started–inspired but lazy, full of ideas but too scared of failure to even attempt executing them. The small slump grew into a big mess…and now, here I am. I think starting small, with short pieces written on a timeline that doesn’t really allow for a lot of wallowing and deliberating and over-planning and second-guessing and self-doubt, will (hopefully) ease the rust from my gears one day at a time, until my prose becomes relatively fluid again. And in the meantime, I can work on developing my super-secret-totally-awesome novel concept, which involves a hell of a lot of research.

Writing starts today. I may post some of the stories here in June, after they’ve been cleaned up a bit.

I can’t lie…I’m both excited and scared shitless about what comes next for me. Hopefully, it’ll be something good. I’m willing to put in the work to get it.

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