1. FledglingStaples
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    FledglingStaples New Member

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    I have a crying problem... Any advice?

    Discussion in 'General Writing' started by FledglingStaples, Apr 7, 2012.

    Hello all, I have written several outlines of many different book Ideas of mine and I have somewhat fleshed out these ideas over the years; however, every time I attempt to really dive into getting an idea fleshed out into a full book, I run into a very serious problem that I have not been able to get passed... I cry...

    I'm not usually emotionally unstable... In general, in fact, I'd describe myself as very emotionally stable.

    BUT!!! every time I dive into my novels, I sob, uncontrollably... I'm sure the obvious explanation is that I'm too emotionally invested in the characters I've created, their struggles, etc., but I really cannot get passed this...

    Has anyone else encountered a similar issue?

    I just cannot focus on fleshing out the details needed to get a book from outline to completed novel when I'm crying and focusing on the main plot line.

    The main book that I really REALLY want to get published first climaxes in a tragedy, but in death the protagonist's goals are achieved and its a beautiful and apropos plot and I think it would be a very good story to get published, and soon! but I just cannot get passed this crying thing...

    Maybe if I drink a ton of alcohol I'd be able to get through it... maybe that's why so many authors were alcoholics?

    I jest, sorry, any advice?
     
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  2. jazzabel
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    jazzabel Contributing Member Contributor

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    Anything that prevents you from actually writing the story at all, is not good. You said you are very emotionally stable in your real life. If that refers to not experiencing or expressing intense emotion often, perhaps you are repressing and the only time you open up is when you try to create. There needs to be balance and self-reflection and understanding, I feel, in order to combat this problem. You can still be extremely invested in the characters but not be debilitated by uncontrollable bursts of crying every time you try to write.

    I bawled my eyes out when I was writing a chapter in which one of my character's husband dies and she goes mad with grief, it was really sad, just thinking about losing my husband like that was heart breaking. But those kinds of scenes are very few and far between, and crying doesn't prevent me from actually writing it, in fact, it makes it better, less pathetic and more poignant.
    I hope you sport this problem out soon! Good luck with your story :)
     
  3. The Tourist
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    The Tourist Banned

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    Yes, I did. When I wrote a personal prologue on just why I wrote the story to begin with. I would postulate that 75% of what happens to my lead has already happened to me. I don't think you can write something that personal without becoming invested.

    Like Palpatine said on emotions, "Use it."
     
  4. Dryriver
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    Dryriver Senior Member

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    Your emotional handicap - crying while trying to write - can easily be turned into an advantage if you can succeed in channelling that heartfelt emotion into the writing itself.

    There aren't many novels that are actually capable of making a reader cry.

    Novels can make you...

    Laugh? Yes.

    Think? Yes.

    Become emotionally invested? Yes.

    Become agitated? Yes.

    But actually cry? Very few novels are capable of that.

    Maybe you can channel your tears into your writing, so the more sensitive readers also bawl when they read it?

    Good luck,

    Dryriver
     
  5. Just Jon
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    Just Jon Member

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    Obviously there is emotion stuffed down inside you that really wants (need?) to express itself. by writing about it, you give those emotions a vehicle to come out. I think this is an advantage. Use it if you can. Do you type while you are crying?
     
  6. FledglingStaples
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    FledglingStaples New Member

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    Thank you everyone for your responses.

    Just Jon: I cannot type while these episodes go on - its literal bawling. I can get through some of the teary-eyed moments, but sometimes it just gets to be too much.

    Multiple: I wish I could "use it" as a vehicle to get the material flowing out; maybe if I just keep forcing myself to experience the sadness/beauty I'll be able to work through it. I tend to shy away from it; I agree that it may be something I'm holding in and so it floods out when I write - I'm sure it has to do with a fear of failure and the beauty of success. My protagonists tend to come up against succeeding in the goal(s) or failing and that is something I feel in my life, too.

    Of course the factual scenarios are different, the emotions, it seems, are the same... and intense.

    Thanks for your thoughts, I'll try to "use it" and I'll keep you up to date. As I said, this story is quite apropos and is time sensitive, I think, and so I want to get it publishable soon - if I do get it that far, it'll be my first.
     
  7. FledglingStaples
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    FledglingStaples New Member

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    Quick question, has anyone used a ghostwriting organization before? I've contemplated it because I have a very strong outline completed with the major events thoroughly outlined, but I just cannot get through the details without... you know...

    Are those ghostwriting services legit? Good? How do they structure their pay? I looked a few up online, but they tend to shy away from their details.

    Any thoughts on ghostwriters to get passed my problem?
     
  8. mammamaia
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    mammamaia nit-picker-in-chief Contributor

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    i ghostwrite/rewrite books for clients who can't do the writing well enough for the book to be marketable, am doing one as we speak, and am on the last of 6 screenplay rewrites for another client...

    some ghostwriters you find advertising online and in writing magazines are legit, but many more are either not legit, or not worth the fees they charge... unfortunately, the legit ones who are actually good enough at it to turn out a marketable ms are not cheap... fees for a better ones run well into the thousands and that's money you will have little to no chance of making back, since even the best ghostwriter can't guarantee your book will be accepted by a paying publisher, or even if it is, will make enough to cover the fee...

    you might better spend that money on a hypnotherapist who can help you overcome your crying problem... i doubt that could cost you anywhere near as much as having someone write the book for you...

    good luck... love and hugs, maia
     
  9. Dryriver
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    Dryriver Senior Member

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    Dry your tears, and try to write beautifully and poignantly. :)

    Good Luck,

    Dryriver
     
  10. minstrel
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    minstrel Leader of the Insquirrelgency Staff Supporter Contributor

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    I disagree with this statement. Whether or not a reader cries when reading a novel depends mostly on how emotionally open the reader is. Sure, some novels are written with the intention of tugging at the heartstrings, but whether or not a reader cries is up to the reader.
     
  11. Dryriver
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    Dryriver Senior Member

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    I've never cried reading a novel. I've been moved by novels. There have been some that have depressed me (e.g. 1984). There have been some that have made me laugh.

    But cry? That hasn't happened yet.

    Maybe some readers are more sensitive emotionally, and really "live" the novel as if it were real?
     
  12. DaVinci
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    DaVinci Banned

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    lol :)
     
  13. superpsycho
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    superpsycho Contributing Member

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    Keep a fresh box of tissue on hand and a big bowl of hot peppers. Every time you start to cry eat one.
     
  14. Nakhti
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    Nakhti Banned

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    *ALARM BELLS*

    You haven't even written the novel yet - schedule 6 to 12 months for that. Then you have to get an agent - if you're lucky it'll take you a few months, but better schedule in another 6 for that, just to make sure. Then even if they manage to sell the book to a publisher immediately, it still won't appear on the shelves for at least a year. So, you're looking at a MINIMUM of 2 years before your unwritten novel ever makes it to a book store.

    If your book is time sensitive, will it still be relevant and 'apropos' in two years time?
     
  15. FledglingStaples
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    FledglingStaples New Member

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    I am familiar with the timeline - I know it'll take forever for it to get to shelves - that is why I'm so upset by this problem. I want to get at least a first draft done, quickly, and I can't...

    I've thought about that ghostwriting to get it out as quickly as possible, but I don't think that'll work out either. And then I get depressed...

    Sigh... and I have so many other things going on that I can't focus on getting this novel done, let alone focusing on solving my problem.
     
  16. The Tourist
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    The Tourist Banned

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    Well, if you're wrong in doing this, then so am I. I am taking a little break from my book. I might start in a few days because we're going to get lots of rain, and I'll have the time.

    I have my reasons. Bike season is underway, and I want to enjoy other hobbies. Also, I'm at a point in the story that must be written to convey an overall plot point, and just hate the scene. Finally, I've been living with this 'character' for about 30 years, and I need to see other friends.

    Sometimes your body tells you to take a day off from lifting weights. Sometimes you need vegetables and no more ice cream. Sometimes being a good writer means you stop writing.
     
  17. Mckk
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    Mckk Moderator Staff Supporter Contributor

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    My advice is, detach yourself from your writing perhaps. Sounds like you're a little "too" into your story - usually it's not a problem but in your case, think it's an extreme case. Why don't you read over whatever you've written as if you're not the author? You don't know what's gonna happen, who these people are, etc. Learn to get into that state, and then see if you can maintain some sort of balance when you dive into writing again?

    Alternatively, just write on as you cry. I mean, that's how reading works, right? - When a book makes me cry, I don't stop, I sometimes re-read the part that made me cry to savour the emotion a little, and then I read on through the tears until they stop because the plot slowly moves away from whatever triggered it. So in the same way, write on.
     
  18. FledglingStaples
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    FledglingStaples New Member

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    Good news update! I completed a whole chapter! And filled out a great deal more of my outline. The details are coming together and I think my best bet is to "Push through" the problem. I was able to get a good 4 hours in last night!

    Thanks for all your advice!
     
  19. MissRis
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    MissRis Contributing Member

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    I am also working on my first novel (have been on and off for about 2 years now), but I really have found the time in the last six months to really focus on it and push through. I don't know how you are, but I think I have these emotionally debilitating bouts of sheer anxiety about what I have written. Now I am by nature highly critical of myself in every aspect of my life and extremely anxious (I'm so neurotic I give Woody Allen a run for his money LOL). I wonder if that is what's really going on with you? The thoughts reel around you head like, *Will it be good enough? Is this a good way into the story? Is my character believable? Is this story just a stupid idea all together and should I just give up?* At that point I usually take a day (or 2 depending how bad the anxiety is) and read to my heart's content in the subject area of my novel. I find it helps clear the clutter.

    Also, I know other people have said this, but how personal is the subject area that you are writing about? There are certain topics that are particularly close to my heart because of personal experiences that I just could not write publicly about.

    Good luck.

    Also, I cried when Dumbledore died in Harry Potter :( LOL
     
  20. FledglingStaples
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    FledglingStaples New Member

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    LOL - Giving Woody Allen a run for his money - good stuff!

    I have not been able to put much time on my novel over the last couple days because final exams are creeping up - but, the last few times I got down to writing I worked on the chapters that were not as emotionally draining. I got through some of the exposition and basic dialogue of the first two chapters. I had a couple problems as I thought about doing a foreshadow, because I thought about the ending, and so I just skipped working on that part (and decided against a foreshadow there). So I think its really just the ending that messes me up.

    Is it deeply personal? Well, I think generally speaking, not specifically. I'm not writing about my life, I'm writing a wholly fictional story - but the concepts are deeply personal. The (I'm choking up right now.....) end deals with the protagonist achieving his lifelong goals, but has to sacrifice his life to do so - I'm keeping it nonspecific for obvious reasons. So it is personal in that I have great anxiety of not being able to reach my own personal goals and I keep wondering (as you pointed out) whether the story is merely sappy for the sake of being sappy...

    I've shared the story with a few people that I deeply trust, and while I would never expect them to give me objective advice, I was able to talk about it without breaking down --- too much.

    I took a whole philosophy of art class that dealt with "Why do we cry over fictional figures?" ... lol! It was a great class with a great prof and I keep asking myself why the hell am I crying over someone that doesn't exist...

    Just being able to talk about it on this forum has helped me too.
     

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