Taking a Break is Okay

A writing career can throw lots of frustrating phases in to your life. Writing a book takes time, patience and perseverance. Publishing – whether you choose the traditional or self publishing route – can test the most patient and calm ones amongst us. And of course, a one book wonder is a rare phenomenon, so the process goes on and on, repeatedly. Imagine all the anxiety and then imagine writers like myself who struggle with anxiety. It’s easy to give up. It can take very little provocation to say, “To hell with this; I’m done being a writer.”

I’m not ashamed to admit that I’ve been there multiple times in the last few years. For example, when a person claiming to be a literary agent promised me a contract and then disappeared. Or when I saw every author and their mother posting about their millions of pages read by Kindle readers. I wondered if I was the worst writer in the world. I also thought that there was no point writing if nobody cares about my stories. So I was too upset to write or read or to even enter the bookstore. But every time I’ve wanted to quit,I’ve bounced back stronger because just two days away from my world reminds me that I cannot live without books: writing them and reading them, and day dreaming about them. And honestly, If not doing something makes you feel so terrible and weird,you MUST do it.

So these days when I feel like crap and suffer from negative feelings about my writing quality, sales or style, I let myself take a break. Some long walks. A reading spree. Those help. I read good books and feel the motivation returning. I have stories to tell and my ideal world is full of books. And cats and dogs, of course.

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