I need help or encouragement (Extreme Writer's Block)

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HollowHabit
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I need help or encouragement (Extreme Writer's Block)

Postby HollowHabit » Tue Feb 25, 2014 10:04 am

Hello,

I am in the midst of planning my first novel, a fantasy adventure for older children to young teens. I am writing this book for a friend who lives far away, and first conceived the idea 3 years ago, although I only finally started planning it last summer. The planning was going great, I had built a lot of excitement up within myself and was shocked that I had actually come this far, as writing a book would be an incredible adventure and achievement in my mundane life.

I have created many notes, categorised them into folders, practiced my writing through other (smaller) projects and so forth. However, a few months ago my work came to a terrible halt. I realise that I have become disheartened and demotivated due to the fact that this friend lives far away, a childhood friend that I very rarely see yet long to be close to again, like when we were kids. I feel like I am no good to them, that there is no point in trying to write this book. Bare in mind, I don't care whether this novel sold 1 copy or 1 billion. My main reason to create it is for my friend and to know that I have the capacity to do something as incredible as writing a novel.

I told myself it was writer's block but it's become much more than that. I don't find as much inspiration in the things that would paint my mind with such colourful imagination just mere months ago. Should I carry on trying to break through this barrier of hopelessness, or am I right to want to throw it all away?

Thank you

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Elibet1
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Re: I need help or encouragement (Extreme Writer's Block)

Postby Elibet1 » Tue Feb 25, 2014 12:21 pm

Hello HH, :D welcome to the WD forums.

If you don't mind me asking a question, why does it matter that your friend is so far away? If you are writing it as a gift for them it shouldn't matter how far away they are.

Two things snagged my attention: What happened 3 years ago that started the ball rolling? AND What happened a few months ago that brought it all to a halt? Now, I don't want to know the answers to these questions they are simply asked in the hope of helping you understand why you've stopped working on something that is obviously very important to you and for someone you care deeply about.

I say you could use some pretend time. Whenever my sister and I go out for tea, lunch, dinner, or drinks we like to pretend that we are somewhere else. Like for instance we are stopped at a motorway cafe after a long drive. We ask the question, okay where would we like to be today? And then we pretend we are actually at a roadside cafe in Paris, Rome, or take your pick, and I kid you not, it is amazing how you can change your whole mood.

You might want to try imagining that your friend is actually living right next door. Feel the excitement of that. How would that play out as far as your work-in-progress is involved?

Hope I've helped and not hindered. All the best with your project, Elizabeth :)

HollowHabit
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Re: I need help or encouragement (Extreme Writer's Block)

Postby HollowHabit » Wed Feb 26, 2014 11:26 am

Hello Elizabeth, and thank you for your reply!

I guess the reason it matters is because, although I don't like to admit it, I miss this friend and feel like if they were closer to me things would be better and I would perhaps feel like I could do anything (cliche and cheesy I know, but I don't know how else to explain it :roll: ).

I like the idea of using pretend time. As it is a fantasy novel, I often immerse myself in movies, music and books where I can get lost in another world. However, maybe I can bring these fantasy worlds to reality by mixing them with events and locations I visit in my daily life. I feel a hundred more times inspired after simply writing a post on here, especially seeing a reply so thank you! I feel more motivated to get back to my project and nurture it the way I did during the summer.

However, one major problem still exists. Back in summer, it was all so clear in my head, and although I have a long list of notes that I've been adding to even in my 'writer's block' period, I feel like I can not piece it all together as I could back then. Revisiting all of my character profiles, backgrounds, fictional locations etc seems so daunting. Much of these were unfinished notes, and I feel like if I go back to them now, I won't know what to do with them. As for the long list of notes, it feels like it is too long and too much for me to go back through and try to put together like a jigsaw puzzle. I hate to say it but part of me can't be bothered.

Is there any further advice that may help with this?

Again, thank you for any replies.

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AibreanShowers
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Re: I need help or encouragement (Extreme Writer's Block)

Postby AibreanShowers » Wed Feb 26, 2014 11:42 am

Hollow, hi and welcome :)

Chuck the notes. Start fresh. I love puzzles and it is my bane. I will play with the pieces forever and never get any writing accomplished. I've had to do this and you might like the end result even better. Good luck to you :)

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Elibet1
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Re: I need help or encouragement (Extreme Writer's Block)

Postby Elibet1 » Wed Feb 26, 2014 10:41 pm

I agree with AS, chuck the notes and long lists. They have helped you plan your story and come to know your characters. All of that info is still inside your head somewhere. So put the notes and lists in a drawer or box and start writing. It doesn't matter how good the story is from the outset. All you are doing is getting the ball rolling. And should you need to check something out along the way you can always consult those notes.

Just start writing. For instance, what might your first sentence say?

All the best,
Elizabeth

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jlpwindy
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Re: I need help or encouragement (Extreme Writer's Block)

Postby jlpwindy » Tue Apr 15, 2014 8:00 pm

Dear in need of encouragement
Please don't give up on your book idea. The creative process ebbs and flows, sometimes we have it sometimes we don't. However, its also effected by the amount of stress, jobs, outside activities, and other demands of life. I started a novel in college and it ended up in the file cabinet for years. last year I took the first two chapters with me to a writers conference and showed it to an editor. She love it and said I should finish it and get in published. Sometimes our great ideas for books need a little time to brew. Keep at it and don't give up, it may yet develop into something wonderful.

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L4_LFC
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Re: I need help or encouragement (Extreme Writer's Block)

Postby L4_LFC » Tue Apr 15, 2014 9:32 pm

Welcome. I personally find it easiest to lay in bed in the mornings and daydream about my story. It's amazing, the ideas that come to you when you are relaxed and there is no pressure of a blank screen in front of you. The less pressure you put on yourself, the better. Just tackle one thing at a time. Think to yourself, how will the story begin, or how will my character change throughout the book?

Can you Skype with your friend? It's free and you can have face-to-face time with her.

Also, you need to write for you, not someone else. I can't imagine feeling forced to write because someone else was counting on me and waiting to read my book. Too much pressure.

TerryRodgers
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Re: I need help or encouragement (Extreme Writer's Block)

Postby TerryRodgers » Thu Apr 17, 2014 6:30 am

Do you have internet connectivity at home? Is it faster than dialup? Do you have a computer with a video camera? Same three questions about your friend. If the answers are yes than you are only a few clicks away from your friend. Immediately put Skype on your computer. Get your friend to do it too and bingo face to face as often as you want.

I speak to my father once a week and we're 4,000 miles away. I can do it from my laptop, my home office computer, my iPad, and my Samsung galaxy. :D


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