I’ve been talking to a lot of authors lately who are fighting the clouds. Inspiration seems to be gone, replaced by a sense of overwhelm. In some cases, it’s a defeatism. I know I talked about some of this with my “Comparison Queen” post of a couple of weeks ago. And I want to get back to that topic. But, since I’ve been approached lately by so many authors dealing with gloomy writing schedules, I wanted to take a moment and talk about these clouds.
I could be all stoic and say that it goes back to why we write. We should write for the love, for the inspiration, for any number of lofty goals, with the money being a nice side benefit. And for many people that’s true. But, when there’s money and business involved, it can add some clouds pretty quickly. It’s important as authors that we can overcome that and continue to pursue our craft. After all, we have readers who might not care a bit about the business side of things, clamoring for our next book.
So here are some tips to battle the clouds:
1. Remember you have options. Even if rights of first refusal are given in contracts, unless it’s so broad as to preclude anything in the genre in which you’re writing (Tip: we only ask for right of first refusal on related works, as do many publishers.), try something else. A different story, a different world, a different genre if necessary. Try something else and broaden your horizons.
2. Remember the business is only part of it. The craft of writing the best story you can is the largest portion of having a career as an author. Keep learning. Keep trying. Most of all, keep crafting and writing!
3. This too shall pass. In the end, the sky can’t stay gloomy for long. And the love you thought long lost might return with a vengeance when different circumstances are applied. Take care of yourself. And know that the clouds will part. It may just take some time.
And in the meantime, keep writing!