Saturday, May 1, 2010

Random Ramblings

So, this could be 2:30 am, groggy, adrenaline drain, emotional drain speaking....but a thought has been pestering me lately with my current WiP. What if I'm not cut out for this writing gig?

I haven't put a fresh word in any work in progress in a long time. I've done scarce editing here and there, but my heart is...just...not passionate about the story.

Then a little nagging voice tells me that YA isn't my genre. Maybe I should quit trying to force it. I'm too old to get it. I don't understand teens. I don't interact with them on a regular basis.

But, here's the thing....I was one. I was a horrible teen. A mess. My teen years were some of the worst in my life. I'd go back and give birth to every single one of those rotten royals, without the epidural again, before I went back to high school. Does this give me a reason to write YA? Or a reason not to?

As a teen, I was a huge fan/student of the supernatural. Can I conjure up any kind of paranormal story in my old brain? Nope. I was rebellious with details rather than actions. Oh Lord, could I argue, pout and put on some dramatics! I had all the wrong friends-the bad kids, the smelly outcasts or the occasional week of popularity while I did someone's homework. I chose them. The kids that were even worse off than I. Therefore putting myself in the position to continually lower my social standing as well. Is high school even still like that? Or is that so last decade?

As a teen, I also thought I could save the world. Scratch that. I knew I could save the world. Now...I'm wondering how I do that without anyone knowing. :0) As in, not preaching.

So...for now I'll go and hide my head in my pillow and allow myself to start again tomorrow. *sigh* I guess I really am the Scarlett O'Hara in my family. :0) "Tomorrow...."


  1. I feel your pain, I really do. I'm struggling right now with my own work. I spend almost all my writing time working on critiques or blogging and doubting my own ability to write. I can only offer you the same words I tell myself. This too shall pass. And things will be different. Hang in there. :)

  2. Ah, Kristi, sounds oh so familiar. I did this for years. Writing for a while and then doubting my skill and ability to write and learn craft so I'd quit for a while. A story would come demanding to come out and I'd start the cycle over again. As to being a YA author or not, only you can answer that question, write your stories and see what they turn out to be. I consider myself more of an adult than YA author, but as you know I have the one story that demands to be YA so that is what it is. The fact of the matter is that it takes time and active writing to learn all the "craft" stuff. Some writers have instant success, but most don't. Most have to take the time and effort to let our voice come through while also balancing craft. I read an interesting article that said that when you are actively working on craft you often smother voice. Once the craft becomes easier, your voice begins to show again. Though craft is important. I think it also hinders in that you can get so tied up in "rules" that you forget to let your voice shine through. My advice, get one of those cheap 99 cent notebooks and pen, and write. Don't worry about your current WIPs or starting something fresh. Write what comes to you. Get back into the practice of writing 1/2 an hour a day. If you can't do 1/2 an hour do 15 minutes. I know you can find 15 minutes to write!!!

  3. Kristi, I think we all doubt our abilities and find ourselves in a valley of darkness sometimes. You are definitely in a valley lately, but don't give up. Write something just for fun for a little while. Just play. Poetry, a rhyming story, maybe a kooky alphabet book... something low stress and playful, to remind yourself how much fun WORDS can be. You'll float back up to the mountaintop soon. Promise. :-)

  4. Kristi, thank you for your enlightening response to my pity-filled dribble. I'll give your suggestion an honest try and we'll see how that goes. :)

  5. Kristi, rest assured that you are not alone. But the fact that you can write about it here is inspiration enough to others with the same problem.

  6. Dude. I considered withdrawing my manuscript and quitting writing the *week* before I got my offer of representation!!! The doubt never goes away, it seems. But there's the old saying: a published writer is just one who didn't give up.

  7. Kristi: Just because you bombed as a teen--btw, all of us did, only in different ways--doesn't mean you shouldn't write YA. It could be some of the angst you experienced will shine forth in your writing, even if you don't remember the details.

    And, similar to Beth, I was ready to quit several weeks before I was offered a contract with my agent. You simply cannot judge your own work, my dear.


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