Has anyone else ever hit a stagnation point?
Seriously, I am not sure what else to call it. It's not really writer's block, as I have ideas and ways forward on how to implement them. It's not really a lack of desire; I look at this stack of stuff I want to finish, for no other reason that I really enjoy writing and want to do it. It's not even a lack of time. I've been a job as stressful as the one I am in now (less hours at work then but I have no at home work or chores to do now) and still found time to squeeze in ten or twenty hours of writing in a week. But right now, no matter what I try to do, I am having a seriously hard time of it. Even my blog post count and submission rates have really suffered. And on top of that, what I do write is so pathetic I feel like I have actually regressed. I re-read my last blog post before this one and did nothing except wince.
So what the hell happened to me?
Well, I can say that for one thing, it feels a bit like exercise. If you are running five days a week, it's not hard to maintain a certain level of performance. Stop running for six months, put on twenty pounds, then try to pick up where you left off. It's hard – too hard, in fact, unless you start slow. I'm kind of there, as I have not done any real serious writing in almost two months. So getting started is harder.
Also, I recognize that my free time is coming in more numerous but smaller chunks right now. Per the exercise example above, unless I am writing all the time, it is hard for me to veer back into that mindset quickly for a short period, unless I am doing it more often. I have been writing a non-speculative fiction book (a first for me), but it is more journal-style, where the entries are shorter. Trying to pick back up on Pilgrimage has been tough, even though I have completely re-read the entire thing since I have been here. I should be painfully aching to continue and instead it's just a minor cramp.
Frustration is certainly a big part of it, too. It's that self-fulfilling prophecy thing: you expect to do poorly, then do, prophecy fulfilled, and set the expectations next time even lower. Ad nauseum.
Is this just a wangst session? (Wangst is a great portmanteau.) Am I looking for solutions? Do I just need to buck up, quit crying and be a man?
I'll get myself sorted out. Until then, just bear with my scattershot posting and ridiculously low production. Who knows, I might come out of the other side of this with some great stories. Or I might come out curled in a fetal position, while my ego says, "You worm. I'm outta here." Either way, it should be fun for you casual viewers.