In case you haven't noticed, I haven't written any posts here in a long time. Nor have I been working on my books consistently.
Well, it's a combination of a few of things. I felt burnt out, I'd been suffering from a terrible comparison phase, and have been stressed due to pressure from those around me. Not bad pressure, mind you. Genuine people wanting to read more of . . . well, anything I can write.
I didn't want to let anyone down.
But because of that, I've let myself down.
I spent so much time writing for others
that I forgot to write for myself.
In not wanting to fail,
I've inevitably been living in failure.
In comparing myself to others, however, I've found my truth.
And that took a couple years, sadly. Mentally, stepping away has been great for my clarity. Not great for my creativity or for productivity, but I now know why I write.
After noticing what other authors do, talking to them, and researching . . . I found peace in accepting I don't write as fast or as consistently as others. According to many (not all), “they” publish three to six books a year because to them this is a business. Don't get me wrong, I agree that it is. But that aspect isn't as important to me as it is for them. They do it for money. I do it for the love of storytelling—not that you can't love both. And I'm not judging, this is straight-up confession through chats between me and a few different authors.
They don't concern themselves with word count, grammar, feedback, or reviews. They follow a formula that sells and go for it. And honestly? I envy them. I wish I could let go of the need for perfectionism.
But pride is important to me. My 6th-grade teacher told us something that has always stuck with me. She said to make sure we are always proud of anything and everything we put our names on.
Personally, I think that's great advice. But I also know I have to accept that sometimes good enough is good enough.
Sometimes it's just fear whispering lies in my head
. . . and it whispers them loud.
We don't all have the same responsibilities, the same goals, or the same standards, but we're all absolutely RIGHT. We're right because only we know our lives, and it's okay if I'm too much of a control freak to prefer that a book with my name on it had been written and rewritten a hundred times. Just like it's okay for others to know right away when their books are finished and to support themselves financially that way.
This may all seem obvious, and on some level of course I've always known it. The difficult part is accepting it.
And that's where I *think* I am. How? From taking a break from all the writing and through introspection. Here's hoping I can put it all to good use and get my work out there this year.
Yes, writing every day is great advice.
So is taking a break.
By S. Katherine Anthony
S.K. Anthony (Shanny) is a writer, a reader, and make-stuff-up-er who lives in New York. She is an award-winning author and a bestseller on Amazon. When she isn’t busy with her toddler twins, S.K. finds herself being transported into the world of imagination. Well, either that or running away from spiders . . . she is convinced they are out to get her!