- I stopped blogging. This wasn’t intentional, I just did. I was tired, I was stressed, one thing led to another...yadayadayada.
- I started comparing myself to other ‘good’ writers.
- I started feeling that I’m not a good writer.
I think that counts as ‘a few’ things.
So I had a bit of a creative meltdown. But then I had an epiphany:
STOP TRYING TO PLEASE OTHER PEOPLE.
What I mean is I’d begun to try and write stories that other people would like. It had become my primary focus: writing to impress my friends/my colleagues/my tutor/potential publishers etc. I ended up tying myself in knots about how it wasn’t going to be good enough for them and I lost the joy of writing. I sat at the screen, unable to type through fear of writing ‘rubbish’. A form of writer’s-block, I guess.
Having realised this, the very same day I sat down to work on something, and just wrote to please me. I wrote what I wanted to write, switching off that harshest of critics – the one in my head – who tells me my work is no good. Sure, my attempts might not be as good as those of my idols, or others in a similar field (I discovered one Jane Flett the other day, and was perturbed by the similarities) but, who cares? I like writing. Besides, that’s what editors are for, right?
Whatever you want to do in life, do it because you want to, not because someone else might like it. That’d be selling out, and no one likes a sell-out.
Except maybe concert hall managers.