Folks, after all the effort it took to get the book written, edited, revised, edited again (and again, three more times) then prepared for print, proofread, revised, and finally ready to publish–my mind has gone blank.
The words, it seems, have fled me.
It’s probably an oh-boy-my-book-is-published phenomenon. The project is finally out of my hands, after so many years. Completion, I’ve learned, is a strange thing.
A Study of Ash & Smoke launched last Monday. I still had quite a few marketing or book-related things to do during the week, then, last Friday, this inexplicable exhaustion hit me. I’ve been in a daze since.
My concentration span has gone, as has motivation to get anything done.
Which brings us to today. It’s a blog day, and I’ve got nothing.
Now, many blogging coaches will tell you to keep too personal posts far from your author blog. I’m disregarding that advice today.
My primary goal is honesty, but there’s a secondary goal that has become increasingly more important to me. I know so many authors about to be published for the first time, and if only one of them learns something or is able to prepare better for what they might experience when they reach this point, personal posts are worth it.
After finishing my first trilogy, all those years ago, I experienced something similar. I’d poured so much of myself into those books that I came to a bit of a standstill when they were done and (foolishly) published.
Sure, I’d finished writing the last book in the same week Dragon Age: Inquisition released, so I lost a good chunk of time to that. But I recall feeling exactly as I do now.
Like, what the hell am I supposed to do now?
The answer is simple: keep working. I get it, you get it, we all get it. Yet, there’s this rebellious part of me that refuses to continue with anything new now, and I think that’s okay.
There’s a lot of advice floating around online, and the brunt of that advice would tell me to take a break. A month or two away from it all, to reconnect with the inner writer, find oneself again, cultivate new ideas, or whatever else.
Unfortunately, I can’t take a break now, as I have one of those scheduled for three weeks in June/July when the in-laws are coming to visit. And, since I lost a good chunk of time earlier this year to the flu (damn weak immigrant immune system!) I’m already behind when it comes to the writing goals I’d set.
So, I’ll give myself a few days to deal with this completion issue, then it’s on to the next book.
I think we must all learn to be a little kinder to ourselves. Do I feel guilty when I’m not writing? Of course I do! I want few things more than I want to be a writer.
Still, it’s important to refill the well once in a while. And that’s what I plan to do this week.
Besides, reading is an important part of being a writer. So, I’m not taking time off at all. I’m honing my writing skills. 😛