Managing Writer Fatigue

There are points during the year when writing fatigue kicks in. Deciding how to react to it, whether it’s time to push on through a deadline like during NaNoWriMo or to take a break from the relentless pace I’ve set myself on, is important both for my own balance and for my stories.

I’ve found the last two weeks to be really challenging with my writing. I know there are major factors in that, not the least of which was getting the puppy acclimated and then dealing with the emotions of one year of living with the pandemic. There were also minor factors at work and all of them arrived at the keyboard with me whenever I sat down to write. Last week I pushed through it some days and managed to get a few more chapters written in MS:L, but stepped away from the writing other days to focus on more administrative work for my projects. Those were days where I cleaned up my note-taking systems or reorganized areas of my office that needed attention. Once I’d finished all of those projects and found that I was still struggling to write, I realized I needed to really take a step back and evaluate my year. That was a relief because I knew the work I put it in to do this once again would give me the space I needed to achieve goals in the next month, but it was also slightly disheartening. I was finding myself realigning goals and timelines AGAIN and it was hard not to be frustrated with that.

The stamina it takes to shuffle and reorganize and rethink timelines and goals in this work is just mind-boggling. Every time I think I have a hold on what will work and how to best use my time, something changes. I’m finding with MS:L that the subjects I’d researched and the information I am working off of are really just scratching the surface of these subjects. In order to write deeper and more meaningful stories, I need to give myself the time to dig deeper before I write. It’s hard though when I know that my ultimate top goal is to see a story published and in order for that to happen the most important thing for me to do is write. Balancing all of these things, the research that needs to be done, the siren call to dig deeper and the fear of losing myself down rabbit holes, the frantic desire to get the story out of me and onto the page, all of it can sometimes get so big and demanding the fatigue of it all brings my productivity to a near complete stop. For me, for this coming week, I’m going to take it easy. I’m going to set a goal to write one chapter of my story, to work on a few queries, and give myself grace as I look at the months ahead.

Please remember that you are more than enough.

Happy Writing!

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