Thursday, September 15, 2011

Overcoming the Dreaded Rut

Everyone in the industry tells you that as soon as you start the query process, you should already be working on your next project. There are several reasons for this:
  1. In the miraculous, unlikely, shocking, happy event that an agent takes interest/signs you, you become a more appealing candidate because you have another project in the queue. You're not the dreaded, "poor thing, he only had one book in him," cautionary tale.
  2. You have something to distract you pour your creative energy into so that you don't compulsively hit "refresh" in your email browser as you anxiously wait for agent responses.
This make imminent sense. Tremendous sense. So much sense that I should, in fact, be doing it.

Right now.

Seriously! NOW! Get going, self!

And yet, I'm not. Mostly because of that whole "creative energy" thing. Or frankly, lack thereof.

Creative energy is hugely lacking right now. It's been bled dry by that whole endless editing process over the last year and a half. Editing, I've learned, is where creativity goes to die.

Creativity needs space and time and silence. Or at least that's what I need to be creative. I cannot be creative without a break, after a year and a half of daily editing a 276-page tome--the nitty gritty contents of which I have become far, far too familiar.

My merciless slave-driving unforgiving critique partner seems to think the way forward is to write anyway. He has challenged me to push through this rut and write anyway--something I have never done before, always choosing instead to listen to the fluctuations of my own internal energy/creativity rhythms.

So I'm going to give it a try his way. What the heck, right? If he's wrong, I can also throw fistfuls of mac n' cheese at his face.

What about you?? Do you wax and wane or plow right through, regardless?

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