1. appleguy
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    appleguy New Member

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    low passion and depression

    Discussion in 'General Writing' started by appleguy, Dec 28, 2010.

    Hey all,

    I assume that there are some people on here who have or have had depression, me being one of them.
    I got over a particularly screwed up bout after making my first feature film which was kind of an awful experience.

    Anyway. Since then I have been writing screenplays on what i want to make next and for some reason everything I write feels like it is awful.

    When I start Iam kind of stoked but by the time the script is completed and I have gotten out all of the kinks I think it sucks and wonder what I was thinking.

    People who have read my stuff love it and wonder what I am talking about but I only see bad atmosphere and awful mistakes and feel trapped by it.

    I'm working on horror films and for some reason I can't seem to see whats cool or scary about these ideas.
    One of them I wrote is a werewolf film and before my depression I loved it more than anything and couldnt wait to see realised, now I think it's mediocre and not that scary, either that or I have lost my ability to be scared! I also don't see things as cool or get a buzz off ideas the way I used to even though I know technically they are good.

    It's like I automatically see everything in a really bad light, a grim and doomy one which seems to sour the project after completion.
    They used to be ideas as well where I thought that if someone else had made it I would be so jealous and eager to see it so I was making stuff that stoked me personally.

    It's like say I wrote the star wars script with the intentions of making, instead of seeing the magic of the film and that it could be much greater than the sum of its parts I would see it as a dumb crappy movie that's childish and probably wouldnt work and would be laughed at.

    I'd just like to add that I've been doing this for a very long time and know that I know my stuff not in a smug way I've just been doing this for 13 years now and I know when an idea sucks and why usually but this is something different.

    I also don't feel depressed at least not bad I have highs and lows here and there but I am out going and doing lots with myself.

    Help please.
     
  2. EdFromNY
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    EdFromNY Hope to improve with age Supporter Contributor

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    I'm not a psychologist, and I have a very low opinion of those who practice amateur psychology. This does not sound like a typical writer's problem. What caught my eye in your post was, "I also don't feel depressed, at least not bad." You may want to seek an outside professional opinion on this.

    Good luck, and hang in there.
     
  3. Spring Gem
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    Spring Gem Member

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    I'd suggest talking with your doctor about the depression.

    Also you may be burned out on your genre. You may just need a break from your normal work. Have you considered doing a project in a different genre, or perhaps do a horror spoof? Take a few days away from writing--read nonfiction, watch documentaries, go to museums, listen to music you don't normally listen to, read non-horror fiction, watch non-horror movies. In short, shake up your routine and thought patterns.

    Hope this helps. Good luck.
     
  4. PurpleCandle
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    PurpleCandle Senior Member

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    I agree with EdfromNY,

    You sound a little bipolar to me..ups and downs and then severe doubt that paralyzes...

    I would suggest medication from a good Psychiatrist (not talk therapy).
     
  5. Pook
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    Pook Member

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    Self-critique is hard, post some stuff up here when you have settled and have commented on others to see what the general feel from everyone here is.

    Chin up soldier, real life is REAL!
     
  6. PurpleCandle
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    PurpleCandle Senior Member

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    I really do not like this statement. People who suffer with depression cannot simply "put their chins up". Statements like that add to the stigma attached to people with mental health issues, as if depression is a choice or the same as being sad for a few days.
     
  7. EdFromNY
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    EdFromNY Hope to improve with age Supporter Contributor

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    I must agree with PurpleCandle. And I must go further - telling someone who has suffered from depression "chin up, soldier" is worse than saying nothing. It is callous and irresponsible.
     
  8. R-e-n-n-a-t
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    R-e-n-n-a-t Contributing Member

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    I agree with Purplecandle and EdFromNY. Saying something like "Get happy, now!" is just really annoying and pointless. And impossible.

    I know the feeling, Appleguy. Just remember, you're judging your own work much more harshly than other people are.
     
  9. JeffS65
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    JeffS65 Contributing Member

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    Depression is a hard cloud to view the world through. While not clinically so, I had a very life-altering event in my life a few years ago that really altered how I feel about life and have been spending the two years hence to overcome some level of depression.

    My point is that it's hard to have an honest look at these things and even things we enjoy with a clear vision. From your post, it sounds like you are not at a low point but still feeling the tug of depression. If you see a Doc for it, good. If not, I agree with others that it's a good way to go.

    Someone very close to me (whom I lost..and is the cause of my issues...) was clinically depressed but understood what she needed to do to overcome the effects. That is to say, seek counseling and good psychiatric advice with regard to medications etc. It really worked for her and she was able to have a pretty enjoyable life.

    But yes, I should stop the pop-psyology/psychiatry too...

    To your issue with writing: You should probably allow yourself the same starting point most all of us have...We all hate our own work!

    You may already get this about yourself and unless you're delusional, you are going to be like most creative people with the will to get better. You want the quality of your work to not just be ok but to be professional quality and weigh your output against that. This is a good thing. It's hard to improve if you think your stuff is great from the get go.

    Problem is; how do get over the part of the mental gremlin that tells you it's junk? That's a hard one. I do freelance graphic design on the side (CD/DVD/Poster). I think pretty much everything I do is not good enough. I see Hugh Syme (for instance) and feel like a worm. Yet, last night I get a call referred from an occasional client to do another movie poster. I must do ok if, unadvertised, I get clients returning and doing referrals.

    I have an objective touchstone for me. People pay me and come back and send more people to me...Must be decent enough, I guess.

    That's the point for you. You may have written something wonderful but as do most normal creative people with the will to grow, it's hard to be objective with out output so the easiest default is to hate it. We all do it. You, my friend, are normal.

    I'm here for writing and have spent time reviewing others work which has been a great thing for my writing growth. I also posted a bit of my work and have got objective reviews from people who aren't family. Step outside of the family and friend realm...You will never trust their opinion. They aren't objective even if they think they are...and you know that.

    So, you have two layers to really navigate (emotions and objective reviews). These are practical and reasonably 'resolvable'.

    Good luck!
     

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