Wednesday, October 2, 2019

IWSG & Writing for the Fun of It


Hello, friends! Today is the October meeting of The Insecure Writer's Support Group. The group was founded by our Ninja Captain Alex J. Cavanaugh. To view list members and this month's co-hosts, or to sign up and join the group, visit the IWSG page here.

Now that we are in the last quarter of the year I can officially say that 2019 has been the least productive year I've had since I started on this blogging and writing journey nine years ago. Some of that has been due to circumstances out of my control but, if I'm being honest with myself, most is due to my own lethargy and the apathy I've felt towards writing for far too long now.

Somehow over the past few years I've become so obsessed with needing to publish something new that I've managed to take all the joy and fun out of writing. Any time I'd start writing something I'd immediately start thinking that I'd never be able to get it published or find an agent or publish it myself. As a result I have more scattered notes and half-finished chapters and pages with no more than two sentences than I can count. And as a result writing has become something that feels more like a chore than something I love to do.

So for the rest of 2019 the only goal I am setting for myself is to figure out how to enjoy writing again. This all started because I loved playing with words and characters and bringing the stories that had always danced around my head to the page. I want to find that joy and fun again, even if it means the only person who sees what I write is me.

This quote by Margaret Atwood is my motto for the rest of this year.


Before I wrap this up I also wanted to give a quick shout-out to my long-time blogger buddy Deanie Humphrys-Dunne. Deanie has an adorable new children's book out called A Tractor Named Wilbur and I had the pleasure of reading an advanced copy. The book is wonderful and if you have any little ones in your life I'm sure they would love it.


How cute is Wilbur? For all the info on the book, visit Deanie's site here.

I hope this new month finds you all well and I wish everyone a very happy October!


37 comments:

  1. Wilbur looks really cheerful and I hope he delights many children 🤗

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    1. Thank you for the kind comments on Wilbur and to Julie for featuring his book. My sister made Wilbur so cute. He's getting compliments. :)

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  2. Congratulations to Deanie!
    When the joy is gone, so is the writing. Hope you find it again.

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  3. I found that for me, when I focused again on the craft itself, on what I love about stories, the joy came back.

    You've got this, Julie. No doubt. :)

    Love that Atwood quote!

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  4. I couldn’t write for five years after my husband died. I’m starting to enjoy it again by not pressuring myself to get published. I may just write for myself. Hope you figure it out too.

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  5. Thanks is a fantastic writing goal. Love the Margaret Atwood quote :)

    Cheers - Ellen

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  6. Writing for yourself first is the key, Julie. :)

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  7. I hit that exact same wall. I was allowing the publishing worries suck the love right out of me. I missed the days when I knew nothing of the publishing world and the story was nothing more than my place to escape from reality. I still care about the other stuff, but it's no longer the sole focus. I even started a story on Wattpad and plan to turn it into a free eBook to remind myself it can't be about the money. It has to be about the stories.

    I hope you find your writing spirit invigorated.

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  8. Julie, many times I'm having those exact same thoughts and feelings. I haven't written anything NEW this year. I'm working on a story I wrote years ago that needed reworking and editing. It's that new first draft that I also can't seem to manage. My muse has abandoned me. Let's hope we can again find the joy and empowerment to love writing.

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    1. I"m sure your story will be captivating, Cathrina. It's important to have fun with writing, so it doesn't seem like your job.

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  9. When writing becomes a chore, the joy kinda gets sucked out of it. I hope you find that joy again, kiddo. In the meantime? Get inspired by reading!

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  10. I have struggled with that same feeling for a few years now. I think writing for ourselves really works best. Let's go scrawl our names in the sand, in the snow, and in the mud until the words become fun again!
    Congrats to Deanie!

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  11. We are on the same page. I needed to find the joy in writing as well and broke away from what I do normally do. I've started a story that is way out there. I'm having fun, but it may end up going nowhere.

    Somehow I'm good with that. :-)

    Anna from elements of emaginette

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  12. I love that thought-about writing for the same person children do. Of course!

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  13. I don't know if 2019 was my least productive year, but it's certainly close to it. I, too, think I need to rediscover the joy of writing. Writing for ourselves sounds like a good place to start.

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  14. Wilbur is cute!

    I totally understand where you're coming from. I haven't published yet but I get hung up starting the new WIP with those same thoughts. I'm hoping NaNoWriMo will help break that cycle.

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  15. Julie, I resonate with what you said about writing not being as enjoyable as it once was, as well as 2019 not being as productive in writing or blogging. Maybe it's hard to sustain that passion for long? I did finally start a new novel but I'm taking it very slowly, and if I don't feel like writing, then I'm trying not to let guilt seep in when I do something else. Hope you find more enjoyment in the future!

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  16. 2019 for me has been one of my most productive writing years. I've written a lot. Julie, just remove the anxiety regarding the publishing aspect of your writing and enjoy your words.

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  17. I got down on myself about my writing a few months ago. It felt like I was wasting my time, all the hours and hours poured into projects that might never see the light of day, it felt really hard to get motivated and it scared me somewhat. Gradually, the love returned and I am enjoying it all again. I hope you too can find the writing joy again.

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  18. Your struggle resonated with me. I've been pushing myself these last few months to finish my WIP (I'm on I-lost-count round of edits), so writing is feeling more like work than it has before. I need to find the right balance between pushing myself to get stuff done and sucking all the fun out of it.

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  19. Once I realized that getting published became unimportant to me, Writing was more enjoyable.

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  20. Hi,
    Sometimes we have to step away for a month or two and stop making ourselves do something that we are emotionally rejecting. After we stop, we can begin to work on what is really bothering us. I have put my manuscript down for three months or longer until I confronted the fears within me. So take the time to be kind to yourself and find your joy again. That's very important.

    Shalom aleichem,
    Pat G @ EverythingMustChange

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  21. This has been a very unproductive year for me as well. I like your goal of just enjoying writing again. Seems silly to be doing something if you're not enjoying it!

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  22. This has definitely been my most productive year, although I don't yet have any finished product yet to show for it. HOpefully I finish my first draft by the end of the year.

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  23. Me and you both have to figure out how to make this writing thing play again. God do I miss that. Happy IWSG Day!

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  24. Writing something just for ourselves frees the imagination. Last year I wrote something a bit different than what I normally would do. It may have taken me almost all year to write, but I was having so much fun with it that it may lead to other things. I hope you find the joy again soon!

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  25. Wilber is adorable! Congratulations to Deanie!

    You described what I went through this past year too. I started several different books but couldn't get one to quite "stick" because none resonated with my core. Then an idea popped in my head and BAM I was off and running. I hope you find your groove soon!

    Elsie

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  26. I agree. The pressure to publish, the process of querying, and the daunting, never-ending task of marketing all put a damper on my writing at times. I'm trying to capture the joy myself, yet it is so hard to imagine putting months and years of effort into something that won't find an audience.

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  27. I've had a similar year. I'm just starting to feel that wonderful creative tingle again and I'm reveling in it. Here's to a wonderful October!

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  28. Wilbur is simply adorable!
    Enjoy your fall season.

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  29. Thank you, Michelle. We completely revised his story so we could make it as series. But I give lots of credit to my sister, Holly, for making Wilbur so cute.

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  30. I'm glad to hear you're setting a priority like this. Writing should be a joy, not a grind--well most of the time.

    Congrats to Deanie on her new and very cute book.

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  31. Lethargy and apathy. That pretty much describes how I've felt for several months. Good luck finding the joy in writing again. That's so important.

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  32. Yes hello October! Bring on the cooler weather and the holidays!

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  33. I know this all too well. The pressure of needing to write and publish the last book of my series stalled me out completely on writing that book...and anything else for a long time.

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  34. It's a funny, but important question - why right? I simply like it, and that's good enough for me :)

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Thank you for your comments!