I'm a fast writer. Or, at least, I used to be.
I don't say that to brag, because fast doesn't equal good or better or anything other than the fact that the speed with which I write my manuscripts is pretty quick. I also edit and revise fast. And I read fast, too. Cue random tangent down memory lane: In fact, when I was in middle school, my summer break was filled with books. I would go to the library and check out a stack of books so high I could barely lift them. Then I'd go through them so fast, I was often back the same week to return them and find new ones. I'd read at least one, sometimes two or three books a day. I also was on swim and dive team and had friends and other stuff, so I wasn't just locked in my room reading 24/7. I was just... fast.
So. Why am I telling you this?
Because these last few weeks... I have hit a wall. And I am the dead opposite of fast. My new WIP started off normal. I busted out about 40 pages in a few days, maybe five or six. It was back in February or March, so I don't remember. Then I got this OTHER idea and I ran with that one instead. I wrote that book, edited and revised and edited and revised, all the while toying with my previous idea here and there.
Well, now the second book is done and out of my hands. So I'm back to working on the first one. Right now I'm on page 53. That's 13 pages in about, oh, a month. PEOPLE. What is wrong with me??
Granted, I've been taking kind of a philosophical journey of sorts. (See Renee for more details on what that means.) But still. I should be doing better than 13 pages in this amount of time.
What do you do when you're stuck? Or when the words just won't flow?
I think a lot of it is stemming from insecurity. I'm really worried that I'm just not good enough--that maybe I never will be. And it's putting a major block on my ability to create. But I sit down and force myself to keep going. I want this to be a career, so I treat it like it is one already. I put in the time, no matter how easy or hard it is. But recently, it's been downright painful. To only eek out a few paragraphs in an hour? It makes me want to throw my computer against a wall. Or my head. Or something. But instead I take a deep breath and go to bed and tell myself, "Tomorrow it'll come back. Tomorrow will be a better day."
I'm still telling myself that, hoping it'll be true one of these days. Once inspiration hits, I can knock a first draft out in a couple of weeks, or a month. I know I CAN do it. If inspiration like that hits again, like it usually (eventually) does. But if not? I will just keep on writing my page a day and eventually, I'll have another manuscript completed.
Do you ever have a hard time letting the words come out? Do you ever question your ability as an author?