1. JetBlackGT
    Offline

    JetBlackGT Contributing Member

    Joined:
    Mar 17, 2013
    Messages:
    465
    Likes Received:
    158
    Location:
    Coeur d'Alene, Idaho, United States

    Depression upon completion?

    Discussion in 'General Writing' started by JetBlackGT, Apr 17, 2014.

    Does anyone else get deeply depressed just after finishing a manuscript, for the final time?

    When I complete my finish-edit and upload the manuscript, I am briefly elated. Followed, within hours, by a deep depression that lasts only a few days.

    I *think* it is a result of losing this thing that has been a huge part of my life, for months and months. Even though it was good and I have other writing to do, there is this huge, echoing hole...

    I write slowly and sort of plod along doing the drudge work of establishing scenes and whatnot but I just feel emotionally crushed flat.

    Tomorrow morning I will send the final copy of book 3 to Amazon and although I am about to start the most exciting part of book 4, I fully expect to be... wallowing.

    Just me?
     
    jannert likes this.
  2. thirdwind
    Offline

    thirdwind Contributing Member Contest Administrator Reviewer Contributor

    Joined:
    Jul 17, 2008
    Messages:
    7,351
    Likes Received:
    2,891
    Location:
    Boston
    This reminds me of an article I read not too long ago. It said that people were more likely to feel depressed after their favorite TV shows had come to an end. I imagine something similar is happening in your case. Something you've been a part of for a long time has finally come to an end.

    For me, it's a bit different. Finishing something is actually overwhelming because I know that I'll have to repeat the process of writing and editing again for the next project. This is what gets me down the most.
     
    jannert and JetBlackGT like this.
  3. MLM
    Offline

    MLM Banned for trolling

    Joined:
    Nov 30, 2013
    Messages:
    548
    Likes Received:
    171
    Location:
    Kansas City
    No, never.
     
    JetBlackGT likes this.
  4. GingerCoffee
    Offline

    GingerCoffee Web Surfer Girl Contributor

    Joined:
    Mar 3, 2013
    Messages:
    17,602
    Likes Received:
    5,875
    Location:
    Ralph's side of the island.
    Not there yet but I expect to immediately immerse myself in book two as soon as book one is done.
     
    JetBlackGT likes this.
  5. jannert
    Offline

    jannert Contributing Member Supporter Contributor

    Joined:
    Mar 7, 2013
    Messages:
    7,778
    Likes Received:
    7,288
    Location:
    Scotland
    That's interesting, @JetBlackGT.

    Inever thought of it, but you could be right. Maybe this is where people who write lots and lots of stories are ahead of the game. I suspect it's easier to let go of a story you've only worked on for a couple of weeks, versus one you've spent years in crafting.

    I've still not finished my final edit to my first novel, which I started back in 1996. It's nearly there. I have started working on my second, but I'm cheating. It's a sequel. I think I'll be very very glad to get the first one away, but I'll still have the characters to work with again. So it's not so hard at all. But if I had to leave them ALL behind? Oh dear. I think I'd feel just like you do!

    I think @thirdwind hit the nail on the head, by comparing it to the loss of a favourite TV show. Only magnified by a factor of 10? Or maybe it's like watching your child get married to the 'right' person. You know you've done well, and feel satisfaction for having brought them to this point in their lives—but also sadness, knowing nothing will ever be the same for you again.

    Writing is Life, isn't it?
     
    peachalulu and JetBlackGT like this.
  6. T.Trian
    Offline

    T.Trian Overly Pompous Bastard Staff Supporter Contributor

    Joined:
    Mar 12, 2013
    Messages:
    2,246
    Likes Received:
    1,449
    Location:
    Mushroom Land
    @KaTrian and I write lots of stories (right now we have 13 unfinished first drafts on the back burner), but while we've worked on our current WIP on and off for... 4-5 years, on for the past 2-3 or so, while I know from experience I'll feel a bit melancholy when we finally drench it in fixative, there are two things that erase most of it:

    1. The story continues in the next books, and even if it didn't
    2. We're just itching to get to write the stories that are currently on hold. It'll be pure awesome to finally get to write one of them after such a long time of focusing on just this WIP, it'll be a breath of fresh air.
    Don't get me wrong, we love working on the current WIP, but, corny as it sounds, to us our stories feel like we assume children feel to their parents; it's really difficult to pick favorites, so it'll just be nice to pay attention to another one after so long.

    I do remember the terrible emptiness I felt after we finished our very first story. It was supposed to be a one off and I was caught totally off-guard by how much I missed the characters and the world we had created (silly me, I thought the 3rd draft was the finished product). Then we realized we didn't have to stop writing, so we started a new story and 6 years later, here we are, with 17 completed first drafts plus the 13 that are still unfinished.

    Now that I counted them all, those numbers look... a little troubling, especially considering all 17 are 100-200k mammoths. o_O Then again, some haven't been touched since we wrote them, so most of them are of such poor quality that reading them will be painfully embarrassing (one of them will never see daylight) when we finally do get around to work on them.
     
    peachalulu and JetBlackGT like this.
  7. FrankieWuh
    Offline

    FrankieWuh Active Member

    Joined:
    Feb 6, 2014
    Messages:
    191
    Likes Received:
    107
    Location:
    Deepest Darkest UK
    I'm like GingerCoffee in this respect. I never get this feeling because I'm usually thinking about the next book when I'm putting the finishing touches to the first. At the moment I'm writing two books at once, drafting them between each other. And I expect to start the first draft of the next book before the final draft of the current one.

    I never get depressed, but I do get a bit creatively tired. So I take a break every couple of years to write a novella or two, something that's less demanding.
     
    JetBlackGT likes this.
  8. JetBlackGT
    Offline

    JetBlackGT Contributing Member

    Joined:
    Mar 17, 2013
    Messages:
    465
    Likes Received:
    158
    Location:
    Coeur d'Alene, Idaho, United States
    Keep in mind that my following books pick up right where the last book left off. Still shockingly depressed :-(

    I am almost always finishing writing the next book when editing the last is done. So every three to four months I run into this problem.

    Empty-Nest feels about right Jannert! It is all I can think. When I published the first book, I worried about how similar it felt to what parents must feel when their children are elsewhere. Is my baby being taken care of? Loved? Are they getting hurt? Who is watching over them? And, in the case of books; who is judging my babies?
     
    T.Trian likes this.
  9. JetBlackGT
    Offline

    JetBlackGT Contributing Member

    Joined:
    Mar 17, 2013
    Messages:
    465
    Likes Received:
    158
    Location:
    Coeur d'Alene, Idaho, United States
    Finished the updates and submitted the final manuscript to Amazon. I already have that weird, off-balance feel but perhaps just being aware of the depression, ahead of time, will be enough to stave it off or ameliorate its effects. :)

    If I disappear for a few days or reply to forum posts in a grumpy way like "You are all big stupid-heads!", I'll apologize later.
     
  10. Bryan Romer
    Offline

    Bryan Romer Contributing Member Contributor

    Joined:
    Jan 26, 2014
    Messages:
    891
    Likes Received:
    381
    No, I can't say I have. As soon as I complete the current WIP I start the next or go on to the next which I have already started.
     
  11. Renee J
    Offline

    Renee J Contributing Member

    Joined:
    Oct 7, 2013
    Messages:
    463
    Likes Received:
    214
    Location:
    Reston, VA
    I haven't finished a book yet, so I don't know.
     
    JetBlackGT likes this.
  12. peachalulu
    Offline

    peachalulu Contributing Member Reviewer Contributor

    Joined:
    May 20, 2012
    Messages:
    3,821
    Likes Received:
    2,379
    Location:
    occasionally Oz , mainly Canada
    Sometimes yes.
    There's like this momentary high, that lasts for a few days - of great work! You did it!
    And then this crash of now what?, and no more Not Pink, no more Dexter, no more Charlie ( Dex & Charlie are characters from my first novel. ) Knowing I won't be associating with the characters ( as crazy as that sounds ), in their little world is kinda
    depressing. Sort of like moving away from good friends.

    Of course that never lasts long either as I'm soon creating more characters and more worlds and getting all excited about them.
     
    GingerCoffee and JetBlackGT like this.
  13. jazzabel
    Offline

    jazzabel Contributing Member Contributor

    Joined:
    Jan 5, 2012
    Messages:
    4,273
    Likes Received:
    1,666
    I feel the same, and also, I feel like that after a big exam. I think after we complete anything that we invested everything we had into, and then exhausted ourselves doing it, will need a period of recovery. Also, it'll feel like a bit of a loss.
     
    JetBlackGT likes this.
  14. JetBlackGT
    Offline

    JetBlackGT Contributing Member

    Joined:
    Mar 17, 2013
    Messages:
    465
    Likes Received:
    158
    Location:
    Coeur d'Alene, Idaho, United States
    It is similar to the loss you feel when you break up with someone. Used to be, anytime you were bored or wanted company, they were there but now they're gone.

    Now you run down to the computer and sit down before remembering....

    "Oh yeah. They're gone..."
     
    jazzabel and peachalulu like this.
  15. jazzabel
    Offline

    jazzabel Contributing Member Contributor

    Joined:
    Jan 5, 2012
    Messages:
    4,273
    Likes Received:
    1,666
    Aw, you experience such sadness! I'm usually fed up of all the editing and re-editing, I let it go a few edits ago. With me, It's more like children flying the nest, it's not like I'll never see them again. :D
     
    JetBlackGT likes this.
  16. JetBlackGT
    Offline

    JetBlackGT Contributing Member

    Joined:
    Mar 17, 2013
    Messages:
    465
    Likes Received:
    158
    Location:
    Coeur d'Alene, Idaho, United States
    So far, I am aware of the emptiness but not depression. It is entirely possible that editing it for the last time, backward, kept me from getting into the story. Also it is *really* annoying to do it that way :)
     
  17. peachalulu
    Offline

    peachalulu Contributing Member Reviewer Contributor

    Joined:
    May 20, 2012
    Messages:
    3,821
    Likes Received:
    2,379
    Location:
    occasionally Oz , mainly Canada
    Sometimes I think it effects my endings - there can even be a pre-depression. The robot in Not Pink was supposed to remain in the trash - end of story. But that was too sad. I thought - aw poor guy can't leave you there so I created Matthew to rescue him.

    Another novel was supposed to end with a literal bang - main characters blow up in a great explosion but I couldn't, so I left it open ended.

    In fact I notice a lot of my stories end with a feeling that I can always come back to them.
     
  18. Mans
    Offline

    Mans Contributing Member

    Joined:
    Sep 29, 2012
    Messages:
    673
    Likes Received:
    193
    Location:
    Iran
    When a writer drowns into a story deeply, he/she maybe falls into the depression, because he compels his brain to move in an imaginary path for a long time and it gets away from realities. This cause his brain loses its natural relationship with the real environment. The degree of the depression is depended on the story theme intensely. The tragic and horror story have the most effect.
    I usually have a relationship with God by heavenly prays. The merciful creator of the universe, helps me to overcome the unknown fears and depression. Of course what I do, you are not able to do due to some basic reasons but if you feel your depression is serious you can use medicine for a while.
     
  19. JetBlackGT
    Offline

    JetBlackGT Contributing Member

    Joined:
    Mar 17, 2013
    Messages:
    465
    Likes Received:
    158
    Location:
    Coeur d'Alene, Idaho, United States
    I am looking forward to giving my genius, hard-working MC brain damage. Because in my God-like control of this world, he will get better over time (between books).
     
  20. jannert
    Offline

    jannert Contributing Member Supporter Contributor

    Joined:
    Mar 7, 2013
    Messages:
    7,778
    Likes Received:
    7,288
    Location:
    Scotland
    I loved the fact that the robot was refurbished to serve another owner. He was a robot with personality, but he WAS a robot!
     
    peachalulu likes this.
  21. Tesoro
    Offline

    Tesoro Contributing Member Contributor

    Joined:
    Jan 3, 2011
    Messages:
    2,825
    Likes Received:
    290
    Location:
    A place with no future
    I almost always experience the same thing myself as well. I wouldn't go as far as calling it depression in my case, more a sense of emptyness and loss. It can take a while before it pass, actually, and even after that I can still miss my characters every now and then. :) Writers are peculiar I guess.
     
    JetBlackGT likes this.

Share This Page