Monday, June 14, 2010

Writing in 140: Finding Desire to Write

What do you do when it seems as if you've lost the desire to write?

Every writer, at some point of the writing journey, will ask this question. The writing seems to flow like water from a faucet and then one day, it doesn't. Then days later, there's still no mojo.

What to do?
  1. Read. A really good book makes me remember why I love to write and often makes me want to write.
  2. Live life. You have to spend time living life in order to write about lives.
  3. Study self. Go back and read some of your writing. Perhaps doing so will ignite the urge to write.
  4. Don't worry. This is normal. Use the time to recharge yourself in other ways.
What do YOU do?

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Writing in 140 is my attempt to say something somewhat relevant about writing in 140 words or less.


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Shon Bacon is an author, editor, and educator. She has published both creatively and academically, and her debut solo novel, Death at the Double Inkwell is now available for purchase. Shon also interviews women writers on her popular blog ChickLitGurrl: high on LATTES & WRITING. You can learn more about Shon's writings at her official website, and you can get information about her editorial services at CLG Entertainment. Currently, Shon is busy editing, promoting her debut project, writing screenplays, and pursuing her Ph.D. in Technical Communication and Rhetoric at Texas Tech University.

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15 comments :

  1. I decided quite a while ago that writing isn't just putting pen to paper or fingers to keyboards. It is mulling and letting that part of the creative garden go fallow for a time. It is puzzling a plot point by NOT thinking about it, by walking and letting life happen to you. It might even be sleeping and dreaming or making love or feeding the chickens. Hard to say.

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  2. I was recently casting around for my next writing project after spending seven years with the same cast of characters. I had no small amount of anxiety over this. I had six different novel ideas but nothing really calling to me.

    What worked for me: I spoke about my writing--who I am, why I write, what my interests are--with a NEW writing friend, who needed a deeper historical perspective to "get" me--and I reminded myself about my own passions. Shortly thereafter I had a very vivid dream. I wrote it down and suddenly, after 10 years of writing women's fiction, I was into a YA novel told through the POV of a 16-year-old boy!

    And Shon: I can't write in 140 words. I think this comment was longer than your post!! lol

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  3. I talk with my daughter who smacks me upside the head (figuratively, of course).
    I walk and sit on my sun porch. The porch faces a busy street full of ideas and the park always comes through.
    There is no stopping, only pausing.

    Maribeth
    Giggles and Guns

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  4. I agree, Jan. A lot of my "writing" occurs in my mind before I ever put words to page. Some find me odd because of that, but it's all about the process it takes for you to write. Just because words aren't flowing onto the page doesn't mean your mind isn't focused on wanting to develop a story.

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  5. That is an EXCELLENT idea, Kathryn. I love that. Just thinking on it, I guess we can get stuck in ruts by not taking the step outside of our ordinary box(es). Talking to that new writing gave you the opportunity to find a new character and story, which is VERY cool.

    And I'm LOL at you because who knows how long this Writing in 140 will last. I can get very longwinded sometimes!

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  6. Maribeth, I sometimes go to high-traffic areas like department stores, bookstores, cafes, etc. just to see people in action and some character or conflict always presented itself.

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  7. When I've lost the desire to write, it's usually from laziness, or reluctance to write a scene I don't know what to do with. I solve it by forcing myself to write one sentence. One sentence, I tell myself, and then I can't say I haven't written anything today. Writing that one sentence is usually enough to get me in the writing mindset, and I just go ahead and add some more sentences while I'm at it.

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  8. I'm lucky, because I flip-flop between my writing and my art. It's rather nice to drink from two pools.

    Dani

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  9. I'm really weird in that I've never been a musically inclined person and yet I find that the best way to kick start my inspiration to write again is to watch a lot of music clips - preferably with song themes that fit the novel. What's even better than that is to attend a concert or watch trailers in a cinema.

    Otherwise, I just read a lot, take a break, play some videogames, or otherwise immerse myself in other media until something clicks. After all, nothing inspires you to write more than having a pressing scene to write about.

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  10. I like to write drabble to incite my interest again.

    Steamy Darcy

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  11. As long as I think, I write. That's why I have my blog.
    em-musing.blogspot.com/
    Writing my novels though takes more craft. And that sometimes feels like work and I need to find patience.

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  12. I beta read, blog about writing, join a critique group, edit my previous work, promote (query or promote current books) take a class and write anyway.

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  13. Cool to read what you all do to keep that desire going. Shannon mentioned music, and it made me think of how integral music is to my life and how it's often the background to anything I write. And most times, as I'm trying to get myself in the mood to write, I listen to music and think of my story to get jazzed up.

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  14. THANK YOU!! I was just moaning about this myself a couple of weeks ago. There are days when I feel like I'm talking but no one is listening, when it comes to my writing. And you just gave me some great advice without knowing you meant it for me. Bless you.

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  15. I go back to the Notebooks (dozens of them, badly organized) and flip through skimming and reading notes and stuff I've written over the years... inevitably gets me interested in a character or something and opens the door in my head, connects me back to that section of my brain and gets it working again.

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The Blood-Red Pencil is a blog focusing on editing and writing advice. Some of our contributors are editors, some are authors, and some are writing sheep. Yes, sheep.

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