Awakening out of Discouragement

I am discouraged.  There, I said it.  I am just feeling bleh and meh and apathetic and frustrated for no reason.

Earlier today, I was walking Leia (who is having some gross gastro-intestinal issues…double entendre intended) and was thinking about my novel.  I have a scene which helps wrap up a sub-plot.  But I am worrying that the sub-plot is being introduced too late and is a bit cliche and its conclusion is a bit too much of a deus ex machina ending…a god-machine ending in which a god (or, in this case, a telephone nurse) comes down and hands out judgment and sends the characters about their lives.

It was just too neat and tidy.

I based the sub-plot on something that happened in my own life.  It was a very long and very hellish day and I don’t remember how I figured out that everything was okay.  But everything really was just fine and I went about my life and….well..I can’t go any further because I really am hoping that everyone is going to read my novel in the future and they will enjoy it and….blah blah blah.

I waited too long to write the scene.  On the walk, I had the scene laid out perfectly.  I knew how I was going to arrive at the crux moment, all the emotional interplays, the dialogue, and sensory details.  And then I came home and sat down and felt nervous.  So I distracted myself with stupid computer games and then other forms of digital nonsense.

Did I write the scene? Nope.

And I regret it because the pacing and the words and the entire moment just kind of evaporated.  The emotions dissolved and when I tired to write the scene, it was nothing more than a toxic mixture of starting and stopping and getting out words but looking at them and feeling like they just suck.

I will confess, this is hard.  Writing after I thought I was done writing is really hard.  I was happy with what I wrote because I had spent twelve years working on this novel and then I finished it once or twice or three times or maybe even four times.  I have written and rewritten and re-rewritten.

I am also going through the agents, trying to find the right match and feeling insecure and like everything is just questionable at best.

Why, hello discouragement.  How are you doing?  I haven’t dealt with you in a while so, take a seat, sit right back.  What do you want to watch?  Don’t mind me.  I think I’m going to sit here and wallow.

It’s easy for me to sink into a point of apathetic stupidity.  To stare at my words and feel a bit futile and idiotic.  And then, someone shakes me by the scruff of my neck and I plunge into writing and live within the curls of letters.

I think I have something.  My beta readers say I do.  My editor is incredibly reassuring.

But I am discouraged today.

Until I opened up the book of 300 writing prompts a student bought for me.  Within is a bookmark, held ten pages in.  And there, in neat penciled handwriting, my student, Rachel, filled in the entry labeled something about an event on a weekly basis that I look forward to.

She wrote about my class.  She wrote about how hard I push them and then how hard I try to make them laugh.  She wrote about love and compassion and acceptance.

The discouragement lifted.  Somewhat.  I am not up to writing today on my novel.  But I have logged in over 600 words here, so I have still done something with words today.

I know that this discouragement is temporary.  I will wake up tomorrow and will put my best foot forward and will try again.  I will write again.  I will finish the scene and will put in what I think is right and will send it through.

I am going to continue putting in the edits my editor recommends and I am going to continue to build in a few new scenes that I have constructed and will place them where they need to go.

And then, I will write up my new query letter.  And send it.

4 thoughts on “Awakening out of Discouragement

  1. Heather, it sounds like you are a writer! Nothing’s ever good enough, and it seems that no one wants to publish your work. Sounds oh so familiar. Have a good night’s sleep and start anew tomorrow. 🙃

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s