Friday, 14 February 2014

Working Hard or Hardly Working?

In so many ways I feel like I'm beginning again with my writing career this year. Having had no new releases last year was a departure for me - since AFTERLIFE was published in 2009, I think I've had at least one release every year. Short stories, novellas, and novels. In 2013 I had novels re-released, but I didn't have anything new out. And a year...a year feels like a very long time in writing. Especially if you spend a lot of that year not actually writing.

I'm working on a still-untitled Shannon novella and I feel like I'm re-learning my craft. Not the writing parts - I think that's pretty intrinsic by now, as I've been writing since I was about five or six years old! But the part of the craft that's about dedication and perseverance. The part that gets you a finished product, not just a first chapter and a few half-baked ideas.

I'm frustrated because I feel like I'm making no progress and that what I'm writing isn't interesting, and that makes me want to quit and work on something else. But I did that all last year. I think I need to remember a few things about the writing process.

1. It doesn't have to be perfect first time round. You can edit it. Nothing you write is fixed in stone.
2. It doesn't have to be a perfect piece even when it's finished and edited. There's nothing wrong with writing something just for fun, for your own personal enjoyment.
3. I've got nothing to prove to anyone. I'm already a published author. I've won awards. I've had great reviews for my books. I don't need to play catch-up with anyone but myself.

And with that in mind, I really, really need to crack on and find a title for this novella...

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