When the Words dry up

Bad words, bad, bad words.

Normally I use that sentence in place of a curse word, but this time around, I’m chastising the words that I’ve been chasing around for the past week. 

Some people call it writer’s block, I call it hypergraphia. 

I’m not just prolific, I have a need to write nearly everything down, otherwise it becomes painful. I physically ache when I can’t write when I need to. I’ve learned to offset it over the years, manipulating myself to keep from going completely mad and writing on the walls.

For me, it swings like a bipolar. There are periods of lots and lots of writing, then periods of nothing. At some point over the next couple weeks I’m going to hate anything to do with words. Mainly the written word, but verbal communication will fall drastically as well.

I’ve been trying to push through and finish Death Mask in the mean time. There’s a period of time after, as it’s coming back, that I read everything I can get my hands on. Last year during such a period, I did editing on the Contracted series. 

One of my bosses, years ago, said something that has always stuck with me: use your people to their strengths. Don’t put someone in sales who isn’t great at sales, put them on setup where they can achieve more and are happier.

When it comes to managing yourself, it’s the same thing. Know your strengths and weaknesses, know when you’ve reached your limit and when you need to wear a different hat for a little bit. I could just try and try and try to write. Just do that for the next year and end up maybe completing Death Mask in the next twelve months. 

That would be a chapter every two months for those who may be counting.

Or I can take a break and recharge my batteries. I know the fastest way to swing myself back around is to basically look like someone with no attention span. My favourite way of doing this is to watch something on the television while playing a game and reading a book at the same time. After a day of that the thrum starts up again, but it takes about six days straight for me to start that twitch and to rage quit all the things and go back to writing. 

I didn’t write while in Cuba, but it’s time for a break. I can’t just walk away from all this for a month. For starters, that’s a bad thing to do. It’s also just not possible for me to shut down the indie author in me, not without a bunch of alcohol. I’d rather not do that.

But I don’t want to market and I don’t have a book to edit. 

Do I? 

Oh, I could edit Contract Signed. That’s a thought that could work out. 

I will still have Death Mask with me and available to write. I will even look at it every day and on each commute. This time around I just wanted to huck my phone across the room. I wanted to play a game or something. 

I don’t have a game. Writing a blog post instead, just because I can’t handle that but I feel guilty for not working on it. I had such a great start yesterday before work. Then my day just killed my brain.

In the mean time, as I struggle with finishing a book that should have been done two weeks ago, I’m going to see about a website. Maybe pre-made covers and graphics as well. Maybe even the cover for Death Mask, that needs to be done and I can do it all without doing the words. 

So much for two trilogies in six months. Stupid, broken brain. 

I realize that without that brain being damaged the way it is, I wouldn’t be the author that I am. I get that, I do. And I know there needs to be balance, but I want to write. I have ideas this time, I have the plot written out! 

But my words have failed me. I stare mutely at my blinking cursor and just want to cry because I can see it, I can hear it, but it won’t come out of my head. 

So I have to wait. I have to sit on my stories and hold my own hand even though I want to shout and scream at myself. I know it’s not because I’m lazy, I know it’s not because I’m not ambitious enough or don’t have the time. It’s simply because I’m broken and it’s not the kind of broken that I can piece back together. 

That frustration isn’t going to help me any. 

Sometimes it’s hard to be kind to yourself, because you have plans and want to go places and do things but you just can’t. I’m more forgiving of other people’s mental health than I am of my own. I shouldn’t be surprised by that fact, but I am. 

And I know I need to take care of myself before I look outward on the world and try to make a change in what I see. That’s what I’ll do, but in that conflicted, “I’m upset because I’m crying because I’m angry with you because you worried me,” sort of way.

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