I’ve been away from the internet for more than a week dealing with a family emergency. That emergency has been rife with sorrow, exhaustion, and frustration. But I’m home for a week before I’ll be going back to Ohio again for round two.
In all that time away I didn’t have a chance to write a single word. For a writer, not being able to write is torture. It wasn’t just not being able to write, it was having that part of my brain completely pushed back to the periphery while I dealt with more pressing things.
On the 9 hour drive back home though, my writer brain kicked back in again. I came up with a pretty cool idea for the third book in my Sci-Fi series (the first two books have been drafted but I’ve been focusing on my Historical Romances and haven’t revised them at all yet) along with a few other tweaks for some of my Romances. It was so incredibly relaxing to have that part of me kick back into gear.
So here I am home again … and I’m not entirely sure how to get the engines going again.
Writing is proving itself to be like an athletic skill. My best friend is a dancer and she’s told me that when she gets out of practice she gets stiff and inflexible again and needs to work very hard for a long time to get back into the right kind of shape. Writing is being like that for me right now.
It’s not that I’ve lost my skill, mind you. I still think it’s there, as evidenced by my imaginings on the PA Turnpike yesterday. But as I sat in the mechanics shop having my car tuned up this morning I reread a novel I started writing in January, Love in a Man’s World (which started out as my stab at comedic gay erotica but turned into an emotionally compelling dystopian future story set in a world where men outnumber women 10-1) with that old feeling of “wow, how am I going to write this well ever again?”
Do you ever feel that way? Have you ever taken a significant amount of time off from writing, voluntarily or involuntarily, then tried to come back to it and found yourself overwhelmed?
That’s where I am right now. Compounding the problem is that as much as I would like to continue with the very last bit of editing my latest Romance, Our Little Secrets, I know that I will be heading out to Ohio again at the end of the week and once again I won’t have time to even think about writing.
So here are my questions to you, oh writer-y friends…. How do you get back into the swing of writing when you’ve had to take some time off? And what should I spend this week working on, Our Little Secrets, Love in a Man’s World, something else (like The Courageous Heart, the third book in my Medieval trilogy that I started in February but put down again), or should I give myself a break entirely?