Last weekend, I almost gave up on writing altogether.
And I really don’t mean that dramatically–I mean, I actually had the thought, “Maybe I’m not meant to be a writer. Maybe I can’t do this.”
Because I was contemplating starting over again, or starting a completely different story, or giving up for a while. Maybe forever. I came SO close to quitting, and I want to put that down in writing because I desperately want to be able to look back at this moment and smile. Because in this dream of a future, I don’t quit, and I keep going, and I finish it. And whatever happens after that…
The number and breadth of my doubts is beyond words, or at least beyond interesting words. The simple reality is I was self-sabotaging, because I didn’t have the confidence that the mess which is my draft could ever be anything worth reading by anyone, especially me. 30 pages in, and I hit a wall. I would sit and stare at the document and tear my hair out and my mind was a black void of nothing. Every word was pain.
And then I decided to go back and rewrite a scene, even when I knew I shouldn’t. But at this point, there was nothing more to lose. So I did, and somehow that made the current scene work a little better, and I kept going. I got past that wall. I kept writing.
I will hit more walls. I’ve hit one just about every other page since, little walls that take anything between a deep breath and an hour laying on my bed listening to music to scale and get past. Bigger walls are on their way, I can feel it, but I have to keep pushing forward. I have to keep writing.
I wish my dialogue breathed with life and character. I wish my descriptions rendered my world in gorgeous detail. I wish my pacing kept readers suspended between gasping tension and sumptuous pleasure.
But they don’t. But they will. 🙂 (In an imaginary universe in which I suddenly become an amazing writer, but hey, writers imagine things.)
Maybe I’ll click into a flow of words that will carry me through the next few hundred pages. And maybe angels will descend and give me a million dollars and a purple tiger named Winifred. Either way, I will keep writing.