2018: A year of story problems

So here is the actual deal. This year has sucked in a lot of ways. I think I’m ready to admit it.

There have been some serious bright spots too. I will not deny that I had many good times this year, but the suckage, it did cometh. one of the biggest points of contention for me this year was that I could not seem to complete any new novels. I had WIPs in hoards and I love them all so much.

But they did not love me back.

So that, along with certain lifey things, is why you haven’t seen much from me this year. I haven’t had many revelations. I haven’t been neck deep in a new project, which is when my creativity is flowing and I’m also inspired to write here the most.

It wasn’t a total loss. I can honestly say I’ve improved my craft and really gotten some fantastic edits done this year. But that creative process… oh I miss it. Every time I would get warm on a story, a big plot or character problem would set up a huge wall and I haven’t been able to work around them.

A few examples:

  1. A character I love that readers don’t like. I can’t figure out why they don’t. They can’t figure out why they don’t. So the manuscript sits.
  2. Can YA characters smoke a lot of pot without life changing consequences? I have been looking for a solid answer on this one for a while.
  3. How do I end a story that has stacked one shock onto another? Especially when I have no shock to finish it with?
  4. Seriously, why the hell do all my teenager characters smoke so much pot?
  5. Did I make these characters fall in love too soon?

And that’s it. With everything I’ve written, I’m plagued with questions that stop my story in it’s tracks. Powering through is like pushing a big ass boulder down a narrow road. It’s still in the road. There’s still no way around it, but at least you moved it ten feet?

Whats the point of this post? Well, two things. One, to really truly explain why i haven’t posted here. I’ve had the best intentions this year but it just hasn’t happened. I don’t want to post trash or drivel i just spat out to meet a deadline. I want to post things I think can be helpful and I’ve had very little.

Two, I wanted to assure other writers who might be hitting a dry patch like me that it is okay. I need to remind myself of this too. It’s been a hard year for a lot of people and that isn’t always conducive to good creating. What it is good for is buckling down, getting edits done, learning technique, reading  and reading and reading some more and planning strategy. And those things are important.

So I am taking a break. I dunno what it will entail, but I’m taking it, because trying to push that boulder is frustrating work.

And because I have a sneaking suspicion when I tell my brain to stop thinking about my stories, it’s going to rebel and offer me the perfect solutions to my problems.