Tuesday, November 17, 2009

Lost in Inertia

For the past few months my blogging activity has been sporadic and my google reader has been set to 1000+ but is more accurately over 5,000 which makes me want to roll up into a fetal position and suck my thumb. I've not been really making rounds to my blogging buddies because it's been feeling a bit overwhelming. Too many posts to read. Too many people to see. Too many things to do. I should just overcome it and attack my google reader but inertia has set in.

So I've been pondering this, wondering what's going on. Used to be the highlight of my week was making the rounds and reading everyone's blog entries. And I know it isn't that I don't care anymore. I'm still intensely interested and I'll find myself clicking over for a quick read here and there. But I'm not commenting a lot, feeling like I don't have much to say. I'm just not as active as before and I don't know if it is laziness or something else.

The more I thought about it, the more I came to a realization that I'm feeling a bit lost. In part it's because I've been trapped in revision purgatory for a year, with this continual feeling of 1 step forward and 2 steps back. I just haven't had anything good to report in so very long. Yes I'll blog about something funny every once in awhile but making the rounds is a conversation. And my conversation has been one note. I can't even say I'm almost done or I hope to be done soon, because I've thought I've been done before and found that I wasn't.

So this is where I'm at. Not bad, but not great. Feeling trapped and wondering if I'll ever get free. Anyone else feel like this? Lost and a bit helpless? And it doesn't help that we are coming up on to the busy holiday season and the busy final season at school. Usually around this time I feel like I'm treading water and I know I'll be busy til the New Year. But until I can finally say I'm done revising and the MS goes back out on submission, I think I'm going to continue to feel trapped in limbo.

But it wasn't all bad. This revision process has been the greatest learning experience of my life. Working with my agent, my wonderful freelance editor, and my crit buddies, I've grown so much as a writer. My MS keeps getting better and better with each revision. I still love it. I can't even say I'm sick of it. I love it cause I basically created the kind of story that I want to read. Mythic, historic, magical, violent, brutal, tender, tragic and uplifting. I'm hoping that one day others will read it and love it too, but until that day, I just have to keep working.

Oldest had to work on her story for her 5th grade writing class the other day and she said to me, "Mom, revising is the hardest part of writing." I said, "You're absolutely right, but revising is where you take your lump of coal and polish out your beautiful diamond." I've been seeing my diamond shining through the coal. I still have a layer of black to polish through, but I know I'll make it. I just have to.

27 comments:

JaneyV said...

Oh Ello I know just how you feel. I've been like it for months. Thing is it was getting me down until I thought "ENOUGH! Do every day what you gotta do and quit thinking all the time about what you didn't do." Things got a whole lot better after that. Words flowed again. I still don't blog so much but I don't worry about it. Peaks and troughs, peaks and troughs. They happen and still somehow we all move on.

Looking forward to reading your diamond.

jjdebenedictis said...

*huggles you*

I stopped talking on my blog for a good long while also, and the reason why was pretty much the same as yours--I was slogging through a piece of writing and felt I didn't have anything to say.

Maybe I felt a little depressed, maybe I didn't want to have to admit I had zero to report; I dunno. Whatever it was, I had no words left over for blogging.

Good news? You'll get over it naturally. Just keep plugging away at what's important--writing--and definitely come to us when you need sympathy or a pep talk. We know what it's like.

*huggles more*

strugglingwriter said...

Not much new with me, really, so you can probably delete all the ones in your reader from my blog. Still struggling and dealing with tiny humans that wake me up at 5:30 AM and pee on me.

I'm sure when you finally get through the revision process you will have something brilliant.

moonrat said...

poor ellen. i know what you mean. in a different way.

Kelly said...

You will, Ellen! I think a big blast of a fart will dust a little of that black coal dust off the diamond and then revise the rest.
;)
I've been revising for a few months now too. Gotta do it, it's hard sometimes, but gotta do it.

Merry Monteleone said...

I've been the same way with the blogging, reading more than I comment and not posting near enough.

We'll all still be here when you do get back to it, besides, the book is waaaay more important. Many hugs, Ell. If I was an editor, I'd snap you up in a heartbeat... unfortunately the most I can tell you is that I think you're brilliant.

Kim Kasch said...

Right there with you my good ole blogging buddy :)

It's not EZ putting the nose to the grindstone but it's even worse and even hurts a little to have to keep it there.

JKB said...

HUGS

I know just how you feel.

You're gonna get through this, and your book will be the Excaliber Diamond of diamonds. I know it.

Keep on keepin' on. We're here when you get back.

Mary Witzl said...

I feel exactly the same way. Still have plenty to write about and tons of comments to make, but sometimes the whole thing gets to be just too much.

And boy oh boy, I have me a couple of chunks of coal, all in varying degrees of diamondification. (What, that isn't actually a word? Well now it is.)

Charles Gramlich said...

I've been doing it but I've been finding it harder to blog lately, particularly to come up with blog posts. I'm just not feeling very creative at the moment and I think my well is drained. It sounds much the same for you, with all your creativity poured into your revisions. This too shall pass, though. I'm convinced of it.

out of the wordwork said...

Hugs, Ello.I've definitely been there.

Sometimes the overwhelmingness of it all is just too much. Do what you can, when you can. The most important thing, always, is the writing of the book. And it sounds like you still love that book. That is diamonds and gold put together.
Nelsa

Whirlochre said...

It's as if Spock himself had melded our minds and tossed the conjoined blobble over to Bones to kick about the enterprise.

I am desperate to write something new, but stuck beating the final mallet thwacks at something horribly old. And yes, in my diary, the word limbo looms large, and blogging (it seems) is an insufficiently stimulating diversion at the moment.

Maybe I need to go and bite someone. Or a horse.

Yes!

I must go and bite a horse!

Lana Gramlich said...

I think we all go through those kind of phases. I have another blog-friend in the throes of blogapathy as we speak. Every so often, I think we all need a break from the routine.

laughingwolf said...

and so you will, el... as for commenting, no real need to til you're ready again :)

Vivian said...

Yup. I'm right there with you. There's nothing like revision.

Hang in there.

Aniket said...

I wanted to say that DaMan should kick your @$$ and make you do the rounds. But then seeing how nice and polite others are being I thought I'll be nice too:

There, There. Ello.
You can have your time off and write an awesome novel in the process.

If you are feeling down we can sing for you:
"Soft kitty, warm kitty, little ball of fur....." :D

Christina Farley said...

I'm hearing you girl! Not easy but it will be sooo worth it. Your character is rocking and will take the world by storm.

I need to email chat with you sometime on my latest WIP. I think you're going to like!

writtenwyrdd said...

i know what you mean by feelign stalled. I like keeping up with the blogosphere but how much time can you spare to all the things that make you go Oooh! Shiny!

I feel a slight despair because my writing is so slow to progress, but I'm trying to keep at it and peck away at it. Letting the many fascinating contact in the blogosphere lie fallow is a sad side effect.

But do what you can, when you can. It's all you can do. And so long as you share the funny things your kids say, you'll always have an audience on your blog! ;)

Angela Williams Duea said...

It's so hard to have energy and creativity for other things when you're polishing, polishing, polishing. But that's just part of our writers' lifecycle, isn't it? I wish you joy and energy in whatever you're working on now.

angelawd: the writer gets the last word

Akasha Savage said...

I know exactly where you're coming from Ello. I am on the fourth draft of my novel; rewriting and rewriting is such hard work and knocks the stuffing out of me. It doesn't help that the only time I really get to write is in the evening when I'm already knackered from a hard day teaching at school. I'm sure the bags under my eyes have turned into suitcases!
I. for one, can't wait to read your polished diamond of a book.
:)

Rebecca Knight said...

I'm with Whirlochre--it's like you wrote this post after reading my mind :). I'm in Revision Purgutory, too.

Keep polishing, and know that we're behind you all the way! We're excited to read your diamond when it's out for the world to see. You rock!

prashant said...

you can probably delete all the ones in your reader from my blog.


Work from home India

Joy Wizziwa said...

Oldest is so right...and you are on your way!! I can feel it!! Seriously...I can. ;)

Barrie said...

Life can definitely get overwhelming. Especially life with blogging! Another thought: if, even with all the heavy-duty revisions, you're not sick of your story, then it must be fantastic!

Bernita said...

Keep the Faith, Ello!

Steve Malley said...

You may be made of sterner stuff than me-- my reader gets over one or two hundred and I tend to visit each person's most recent and 'mark all as read'.

I've been trapped in much the same headspace this year. Way it goes sometimes, I suppose...

Kiki Hamilton said...

Keep the faith, Ello! You are SO close to the finish line on this story and soon your diamond will sparkle for all the world to see.

I can see Seven Kingdoms there on the shelf - can you?

Hugs to you.

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