Journal: Hitting the Wall

July 20, 2016

Dear Reader,

 

Last night I hit a wall while writing. I usually have an hour or two each night where ideas flow, story elements come together, and the story progresses. But as I come around the corner to the last 1000 words of my story, I hit a wall.

 

Ideas were not coming together. The story wasn't aimlessly drifting: I felt like I was on-track

 

with the story, and I had enough space left within the word limit to complete the story. The problem: the ending just wouldn't come.

 

Much like a runner who begins to feel fatigue, I felt like I had "hit the wall," and was now trying to get excited about the story to finish it. So what did I do?

 

I woke up early this morning and kept writing.

 

I'll likely scrap everything I wrote today (and probably insert more tonight, which may also be scrapped), but it was important for me to get up early this morning and force myself to write. Writers fatigue is common: it afflicts even the best writers. Rowling faced it throughout her Harry Potter series, Tolkien experienced it on every project he worked on (and is one of the reasons he wrote as many manuscripts as he did, and why most of them are only partial manuscripts), and many others.

 

So if you are facing writers fatigue - if you've hit the wall - from one writer to another, I have an encouragement for you:

 

Keep writing.

 

Perhaps the worst thing you could do is to give up and let it lie dormant. Even if you end up scrapping whole sections of your manuscript, just maintaining the discipline of writing is key to becoming a successful writer and a good storyteller. And that is a useful skill, even if you never sell a manuscript or win a reward.

 

So from one traveler to another, hang in there - we've got eleven days left!

 

Aaron K

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