Every November I participate in NaNoWriMo. It’s a tough month filled with a lot of writing and sitting in chairs all for the chance just to say I did it, I won.
It’s no wonder that right after NaNoWriMo a lot of people take a long break. We get burnt out. That’s 50k words worth of story completed and our minds are jelly.
But that’s not the only burn out an artist can suffer from.
I’ve been working on Mermaids Curse since October. Yes, that’s nine months with one project. I’ve completed a little over 81k words on it, rewritten over half of it already, and also thrown away about half as much as I’ve kept. That’s well over 100,000 words in the same project. It makes you sick of looking at it after a while.
Burn out can happen when you’ve spent too much time on the same project. When your pushing yourself too hard or when you aren’t taking care of the rest of yourself correctly.
For me, when I am really feeling it I will take a day or two to read something. I don’t get nearly enough time to read anymore. I often will switch projects for a day or two so that I’m still writing but not over working on the same project.
I know right now I feel like there is no end in sight for my dang novel and that makes writing and editing take that much longer. It’s that feeling of defeat that always gets in the way. Oddly enough, when I published ‘Footprints’ a couple months ago that gave me a burst of speed that carried me through the edits of half the book. But I haven’t published anything since then and I know that is part of the reason I’m having issues. Unfortunately I don’t have anything to publish so that isn’t an easy fix, but I’m not giving up.
The ultimate cure for burn out is just finishing the project and moving on to the next one. I know I’ll be so excited when I’m finally finished with Mermaids Curse.
So… This was my break and now I’m off to write some more.
It sounds like you’re suffering from the same thing as Garrett. He said he had the no-publish blues so started “Nightblade” to make sure he always had something to publish.
Would that work better, maybe? After Mermaid’s Curse, write a serial so you’re always publishing every so often, but it builds to a large volume?
Ya I thought of that and I think I do but I don’t work as fast as he does nor have I ever written a serial so I’m not sure but I need to figure something out. Usually I just work on things at once
I tried working on multiple projects this year. It didn’t work for me. I was thinking more that you could write a serial instead of novels, if the novels are burning you out and stopping you writing.
They’re almost short stories, only they’re all in row 🙂
I use to work on multiple things at a time all the time. Would write tons of words a day every day, no problem. My trouble was finishing things, so I’ve put the emphasis on finishing more then just writing. Finishing a novel causes burn out. So… ya… Half a dozen of one, six of the other.