1. ZP3
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    ZP3 Member

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    Writing feels like a chore

    Discussion in 'General Writing' started by ZP3, Jan 29, 2012.

    Iv'e been diligently working on my novel, but it just isn't working. It is slow, awkward, and I'm just not into it. I'm at the point where i should either just drop it, or start with a new viewpoint.


    But anyways, what do you do when the thing you are writing feels like a chore? Do you scrap it, or keep pushing though?
     
  2. jc.
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    jc. Contributing Member

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    I used to scrap it every time I reached that point... but that's why I don't have any finished works. Now I just suck it up and keep writing until I get inspired again.
     
  3. Yoshiko
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    Yoshiko Contributing Member Contributor

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    Unless you have a deadline to meet (set by someone other than yourself) then feel free to take a break and come back to it when you're more enthusiastic about continuing. If you do have a deadline then just keep ploughing through.

    Alternatively, you could take a closer look at your story and find out what it is that is making you feel that way.
     
  4. LVOS18
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    LVOS18 Member

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    You might have been writing the same story for too long and you've stopped feeling or caring for it. There could be something else in your life right now that you'd rather be focusing on. Perhaps in your head you have the story for another novel that you would rather begin than continue with your current one right now.

    I'd recommend taking a break from the text until you no longer know it off by heart but when you re-read it it feels like you are reading someone elses work. See if you enjoy it then and are encouraged to continue writing. If you are not then I would stop writing, there's no point in writing something you're not enjoying, unless you are getting some intense pain from the writing which comes across in the novel and makes it very interesting! Being bored when you write will probably produce boring work.

    Never scrap anything though. Always keep what you've written somewhere, as you may want to come back to it one day.
     
  5. twelveninetysix
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    twelveninetysix Member

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    The point about forgetting it a little then re-reading it is very useful. If it's something in your writing that's annoying you, this will help hugely with spotting that. Alternatively, it can simply give you the confidence in your writing to carry on. Always keep it. If you really need to, take a break, but keep it. Someday (sooner than you'd think) you'll read a great book or poem and it'll make you want to write again, write anything, and it's much less daunting to pick up halfway than to start from scratch.
     
  6. Cacian
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    Cacian Banned

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    I start tiny/small and make my way up.
    I write short stories then I extend.
    There is no rush.
     
  7. Tesoro
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    Tesoro Contributing Member Contributor

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    I feel the same way right now, for the very first time. I wrote a first draft on one novel, but when I started on the second draft everything felt wrong about the tone and I just lost interest in it and decided to give it a break and write something else in between. Problem is now I seriously doubt this new one too, it's boring and difficult to write and it makes me feel depressed. I don't know what to do. I have never been the one to jump between writing projects before and now I have given up on two things in less than a month... :( And nothing else feels interesting either. I'm thinking of having a break from writing and concentrate on reading for a while.
     
  8. naturemage
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    naturemage Active Member

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    If you feel bored with something, find something else to write and come back later. I did that with a story a few years ago. I was getting bored writing it, like I was just stuck.
    I wrote a few short stories just to pass the time, because I still wanted to write. Then, I went back and got back into it. Is it a chore sometimes, yep. I hate editing, it's my worst area. But, keep pushing. Find another activity to do. Take your mind off of it. Don't think about it. You'll find a time when you go back, see it, and go "hey, let's go back into this." You'll get back to it. Unless someone else has set your deadline, you've got time. (Besides, if someone else set your deadline, it's no longer a chore. It's a job. You've got no choice then...)
     
  9. agent99
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    agent99 New Member

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    I am not a professional writer, although I like to write. When we write and rewrite and rewrite we are perfecting our work. Hence, this process is part of being a perfectionist. Unfortunately, it is a blessing and a curse.
     
  10. Banzai
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    Banzai One-time Mod, but on the road to recovery Contributor

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    Push through. Always push through.

    Being a writer when the wind is in your sails, when you're full of excitement and energy, when your inspiration is running like a tap- that's easy. But if you actually mean to make something out of your writing, you're going to have to do it all the time. Even when it's difficult and you don't particularly want to. That's what being a writer is about.
     
  11. LVOS18
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    LVOS18 Member

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    Banzai I would agree with you in a case where someone is finding it hard to write. In that case you should push through, because sometimes it's easy but sometimes it also has to be hard. But what I think the OP is describing is a lack of enjoyment/satisfaction from writing. Even if you don't have your crazy divine moment of just being able to throw words on to the page you can still be satisfied by your writing as you plod slowly through it. But if you are unsatisfied by writing and do not get enjoyment out of it, then why are you writing?

    There is a distinction between the two problems I think. After all you could be having your 'tap' moment where you know exactly what to write but still not actually be satisfied by writing it. The OP seems to say he is cracking on with his writing but just not enjoying it and so would fall in to the second problem rather than the first. In my opinion writing should be done for personal enjoyment, and unless you have a deadline, why write if you do not find it enjoyable?
     
  12. jonsnana
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    jonsnana Member

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    I think you have the answer when you said "new viewpoint". Something about where you are at in the story isn't working. You could jump ahead a few chapters to a different scene with different characters and see if working with them allows your back brain to figure out the problem with your current chapter. Write poetry, character sketches, whatever, anything that allows you to keep the writing going and the brain working. I'd come back to the problem area late next week. Chances are you'll see the solution right off. Good luck
     
  13. Mark_Archibald
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    Mark_Archibald Active Member

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    You need to have discipline or what else is going to separate you from other writers. Discipline is doing something that you don't want to do, but doing it with love all the time.
     
  14. jc.
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    jc. Contributing Member

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    Yep. I agree with everyone else pretty much. It's just like everything else we need to do in life... not always fun, but definitely worth it. I notice that I only dread writing when I think about it but when I actually sit down and do it I can't stop.
     
  15. UrbanBanshee
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    I would go back to the beginning. Not rewriting the story, but find what inspired the drive for this particular story. Find the little note you scribbled to yourself when you first thought up the idea, read what it was that helped inspiration to strike. Find a way to remember what it felt like to start.

    Personally I love finding music that makes me think of my characters or story. Even if I'm not being "productive" I feel inspired and energized.

    Another idea, though granted a bit harder to do, is find an artist and commission a drawing of a character from your story. It sounds weird, but there is something about seeing a picture of your character made real. Like I said not as easy as listening to music, and it takes $, dedication, and patience but it is often worth it.

    Also just think on if you are just in a rough patch, or if you no longer like the story at all.
     
  16. Miss Moon Jelly
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    Miss Moon Jelly New Member

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    When I'm stuck I tend to find taking in new influences helpful, like watching movies and reading books. Often some detail will be interesting and segue into a new idea or a new perspective on the story.
     
  17. Mark_Archibald
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    Mark_Archibald Active Member

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    Sometimes you have to be hard with yourself; you think you're such a great writer and one novel idea has you stumped?? hahahaha NEXT! How many people are on that train?
     

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