Monday, May 9, 2016

Taking a Break when Writing

It's later than I usually stay up on a week day, and especially a Monday at that. But I just had to share my small victory for tonight. 
I took a break from writing yesterday (Sunday). After realizing on Saturday evening that there were some flaws with the magic system in Clara and Claire I spent a lot of time thinking. So much time that I didn't feel very accomplished on Saturday night. What should have been a 6-8 hour period of free writing time was maybe 2-3 at best because of my concerns. I spent most of my time scribbling ideas and questions into my notebook. And I have to admit it made me feel defeated in a way. A book where everyone in it has magic can't exactly make it if it has an issue with how the people use magic. 
So come Sunday night I took a break. I didn't even look back into my journal. I spent the night relaxing and catching up on sleep to start another week.
And then tonight I decided to jump back into the action. It's been a long day, but I decided I had nothing to lose. And honestly when I know I've skipped a night of writing I feel guilty and want to write again. So I did. And I did it all without my notebook full of questions and ideas about the magic system. Instead I went to Pinterest for inspiration. A lot of my inspiration comes from there --the images help me piece together my own ideas in my head. And once I fueled up on inspiration I dove back into writing again. I finished the chapter that I couldn't finish Saturday night and reached 30k words in total for the rewrite. And 30k out of 82k I can't complain about --keep in mind these numbers are approximate; the first draft was 82,719 but it's easy to just round it to 82k.
So even though right now it's almost midnight and I'm still awake, I just had to share while I'm in the moment. Now that I'm done writing for the moment I wanted to share this because I've seen a lot of writers admitting their defeats lately. And to some this might seem like a small victory, but writing is made up of a bunch of small victories. Being able to jump back into writing tonight like nothing changed reconfirmed yet again that this novel means so much to me. And that this story is important; my characters are dying to tell it and aren't afraid to fill my head with their voices. Each time I get further in the rewrite I'm that much more excited to share this book once it releases. 
I think these breaks in writing are important. They're not something I always enjoy, but afterwards it allows me to return to my writing with a open mind. It stops me from being overwhelmed and clouded with too many ideas or questions. It helps me stop analyzing my work so much that it takes the fun out of it. Tonight I just wrote with inspiration and changed up the scene and feeling of the chapter along with it.

Since it's late, I'm going to post my writing progress on social media and head to bed. In the meantime, let me know how you take breaks when you're writing. Leave a comment and I'll get back to you!
Lindsey Richardson


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