I've reached a point in one of my projects where I can't seem to put pen to paper (figuratively, since I write everything on a computer). Not for lack of an idea. Conversely, it's too big of an idea.
I am one to normally sit down and write with a very general concept and almost no planning outside of a central plot point. Even then, I don't always stick to the plan.
Since I have never written any story which exceeds 10,000 words, I am really struggling to organize my ideas into a cohesive narrative. There are episodes which revolve around the central idea, but all of them seem to be interchangeable with no structured order to them.
Any one of the choices I could make would get me started writing, but I have to also contend with the possibility that making a wrong choice might make me disenchanted with the writing and stop with the project altogether.
I have had at least one idea go down the tubes due to poor execution. This idea is too special, too valuable to ruin it. I need to find a way to power though the struggles and growing pains.
I probably need to just write at the end of the day. I need to come to terms with the idea that whole blocks of text, subplots, and characters might need to be balled up and tossed into the trash before I get it right.
I took a very long break over the summer to take stock of a few things. That's the short version to explain my absence.
There aren't a lot of juicy details, I just found I was putting in a lot of effort without seeing results. Twitter was consuming too much of my free time. I was scheduling promotions on Amazon, writing reviews and reading the work of others.
All that work got me nothing, essentially. Perhaps a few page views here, but little else. It didn't translate into sales. It didn't foster enough goodwill to get me anywhere. I was left feeling more than a little disappointed.
Most of all, it wasn't all that fun. Writing is fun. Working to sell yourself as a writer is not fun. It's brutal, tedious work. All of the joy had been sucked out of the actual writing.
I spent the summer on me. Kicked my Twitter habit almost completely. There are good folks there, don't get me wrong. But most, good or otherwise, are really after the same exposure I was seeking. Since I wasn't helping them or myself, I got out.
I didn't look at my Amazon sales for months. It's too depressing. Still is, that hasn't changed, but I am no longer obsessed with it. I think I might have made one whole dollar this summer. Oh well.
Most importantly, I started writing again. I was no longer worried about making money, getting published or any of those things. The words suddenly came back. I enjoy it again.
I don't know when I'll be back, I probably will try to be a little more consistent again, but I won't be fretting over getting stuff done here, there and everywhere. Just not worth it.