03 February 2013

Anyone Else Ever Been Stuck in Writing Rut?


It's official - I'm stuck in a writing rut.

I'm not sure how it happened, but I think the struggles of 2012 left me worn out for 2013. Lost a job (in fact, both my brother and I lost a job), lost my internet access, lost my computer, and then...I think somewhere along the way, I just lost my motivation.

Things have turned around  - I found a new job in August of last year, finally FINALLY received a working internet connection this past week, got a new computer for my birthday...and my brother has a lot of interviews lined up the next couple of weeks so it looks like that struggle might be over soon too.

...yet here I am...stuck. In a rut. It doesn't help that I've been sick all week.

I'm bored with my fantasy novel, I'm kind of bored with my blog, I'm just...restless and tired of the daily grind.

Without a doubt, there is a strong chance this is more like a "life" rut than a "writing" rut, but I figured I would just start there.

So, have you ever been in a writing rut? What did you do to get out of it?




22 comments:

  1. Sounds like you're still dealing with residual effects from 2012. Don't worry, you'll come around. We always do. Just let it come to you! :)

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  2. Writing is an emotional process. Once you get your emotional footing back, everything else follows suit :)

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  3. Every time I get in a writing rut, I go to the local flea market. No, seriously. There's so much to observe at the flea market. My husband and I would point out different people and do this sort of game:

    My husband would point out an elderly black man and say, "What did he have for breakfast this morning?"

    I'd say, "Sweet corn meal muffin soaked in buttermilk and black coffee with honey."

    I'd point out a six year old kid skipping around a table and playing duck, duck, goose with a variety of DVDs. I'd say, "What was the last thing his mother said to him?"

    My husband would go, "Sit yur ass down, son!"

    Hahahahahah. No really, we play this all the time. It's good exercise for the creative mind.

    Get out of that rut lady! Exercise your mind. It will come back to you. :)

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    1. Hahaha, that sounds fun!! I think it finally got to me because I've been cooped up all weekend and have been sick. Ugh, I definitely need to get out next weekend!

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  4. This will pass. For an exercise in the meantime, maybe you could try writing something completely out of your usual genre. Maybe start out with a few flash fiction pieces?

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    1. I think I will... I just need to change things for myself, for sure!

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  5. Everyone gets in a rut sometimes. I'm going to try a different tact rather than dig your rut deeper. Although I can empathize with you. Before you stop reading...I love you. I'm not angry with you. This is to make you see that you could have it worse than a rut. So read it all. It's a reality check time.

    Shake it off. If you stare at the bleak long enough it will immobilize you. You need a swift kick in the pants . Snap out of it. If you don't nobody can help you.

    I've been there and you have to claw your way back out of that hole. You've got your internet and computer back. Yippee! Now do something with it. Something you are good at like writing! But if you want to sit and stew on the pity pot for longer that's up to you. You'll end up with a nasty red wring on your butt. Now get off it because I know someone else might want to use it.

    Does that help any?

    If I can blog and write with a terminally ill husband, lost my job and can't get another one in the foreseeable future, and can bounce back, sort of, from a stroke which left me paralyzed on the right side. I'm still typing with one hand because the other one doesn't how to work anymore. What's your excuse...I'm bored and nothing pleases me. Lady, get a clue!

    AND NO, I'm still not mad at you.

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    1. OUCH! I do know what you mean, though. And not to join the pity party, but all of 2012 one of my brothers was suicidal and attempted about four times, and another brother was out of work all year. I just don't like blog about my personal life like that.

      Snap out of it? Okay. Sure, why not?

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    2. I know, honey. Easier said than done. Last year was terrible for you like it was for me. The shock therapy was a bust, huh Nicole? But that was 2012 and this is the second month of 2013. Time to shake off last year's calamities to make room for this years. Remember I'm a Murphey and you know what Murphy's law says right?

      You know I wasn't saying that to be right? The little voices in my head said you'd understand.

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    3. Yes, I know. Tragically, my brother won't be cured of Schizophrenia and joblessness haunts my other brother in 2013. But I know what you mean. It's also tough to hear someone "complain" when you're going through a bad time yourself, so I can see why you were frustrated. Yet, I especially had to bite my tongue not to write a retorting post back to justify my feelings, but I realized I didn't want to do that. Tragically, "shock therapy" made me feel like I am better off NOT writing personally on my blog anymore to save myself from these types of comments.

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    4. I did go by your blog by the way after I read your comment - in so sorry for what you are going through. It did sort of put me in my place - and that's just what I needed. Good for you for fighting through and staying motivated. I think I'm just feeling a little melancholy these days and need to get my head on straight. Tha ks for your harsh, but needed words. :)

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  6. Nicole - I get in a rut fairly regularly - and 2012 was a watershed year for me, too. Lost job, lost father, lost focus...etc. etc. BUT here's what I've been doing lately that seems to help a lot. I have tons of ideas for stories and novels. When I can't get traction on one, then I switch to another. At least as far as writing down the idea as fully as I can. It helps with the current project in that it gets my writing blood flowing again and it helps with not losing some truly great ideas. I find if I wait to get started on them by the time I return to the "idea" in my head, half or more of the important part has disappeared.

    Good luck, sista!

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    1. OH thank you! And thank you for being understanding. It's true, I just don't think I'm giving enough life to some of my others stories. Which may make me feel stuck in the one I'm working on. Thank you for the advice! :)

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  7. Nicole I was just saying the very same thing to myself! Sorry about what you went through in 2012. I had a tough 2012 as well but not as bad as yours. My elderly mother got sick towards the end of 2012 (she's much better now) and since then, I've been busy with lining up services for her as she lives alone. To make a long story short, I haven't been able to concentrate much on my writing. I need to finish a bunch of stories that I started and I'm finding that I don't have the necessary motivation and/or I tell myself is it worth it? I did finish one story (keeping fingers crossed) which I'm hoping to submit somewhere so I should pat myself on the back for that . Now I'm getting ready to tackle my novel. I don't even know where to begin. So no, you are not alone!.

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    1. Oh thank you Dora! I'm so sorry about your mom, it's never easy to have a family member sick. My sympathies go out to you!

      I think that's awesome you have something to submit! Maybe that will help! Just putting it out somewhere! Either way, we'll take it one step at a time. We will definitely get through our difficult times! One word at a time. :)

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  8. Take a break. When you come back into writing refreshed, you'll be amazed at how many more ideas you have to write about...and most of them will have come from your time away without your even realizing it.

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    1. I think so! I'm putting too much pressure on one project. I think I need a break...for sure. I hope all is well with your project/novel by the way!

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  9. A key rut-breaker for me is: Write something else, or change your game plan about what I'm writing. My ruts are generally, at least in part, attributable to my not loving what I'm writing. (Of course, other factors play a role too, but if I'm excited about what I'm writing, I can usually get past the other issues.) So I squash the scene I'm working on, re-outline it, or take a break and write something else entirely. I figure, if I push through it and get the words down anyway, I didn't enjoy it--so my audience probably won't enjoy it either.

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    1. I think so too! I think I need a change pretty bad - I just need a fresh look at my writing and a new approach!

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  10. I'm so far behind on reading my "followed" blogs - I'm not even sure I can catch up.... And we won't talk about my blogging (LOL)... I'd say I know what you mean about being in a rut, but I don't consider myself to be a real writer - though I do come up w/ a lot of stories in my head (just never get them on paper)... More than getting into a rut is the problem of having a story idea that just seems to go no where.

    Good Luck with your writing. Once I'm moved & settled I'll be able to get back in the game of blogging and all

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