Regaining Your Love of Writing

Before my three-month sabbatical started, I printed out a few articles that struck a chord and that I wanted to take time to ponder. One such article was “When the Thrill is Gone.”

Here’s a bit of what it said, and I hope you’ll read the whole article.

In recent weeks, I have had conversations with a genuinely startling number of writers who confess that they have lost their hunger to write. One says he is weary of the struggle to publish; another says she’s lost her motivation; another just shrugs. “It’s hard.”

Some wonder if they ever had any talent to begin with, or maybe they did and it has dried up like last year’s clover. Some have lost hope of ever landing that longed-for contract or agent to help with the overwhelming business of publishing. Others have dived into indie publishing with great hope only to discover it’s a lot of work for little return.

The thrill is gone. Maybe it’s time to throw in the towel, get a divorce from this ridiculous passion, call it quits on a marriage no one but you ever thought was going to amount to anything.

The author of the article, Barbara O’Neal, was so right when she said this could be caused by a number of different things--but it isn’t the writing. 

So What Causes It?

She mentioned several causes, and if you feel like you’ve lost your love of writing, they are worth exploring:

  • exhaustion from various aspects of your writing career added to stress from life experiences
  • internal and external pressure (from our own expectations and expectations of others in our writing life)

On Friday, after you’ve had a chance to read her article and do some thinking about it, I’ll share with you some of things I discovered about my own loss of joy in writing–and how it came back.

The author gives a five-step process for recovering your love of writing, and I think it would be worth your time to print out her whole article. If you don’t need it today, you will need it sometime in the future. Life happens. Exhaustion and pressure happen. And writing dreams–and the love of writing which propels us forward–can die on the vine.

Don’t let that happen to you.

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4 Responses to Regaining Your Love of Writing

  1. I have definitely “Been there. Done that.” The worst part is the guilt and the “I should be writing. What’s the matter with me?” talk that goes on in your head while you’re struggling with the inability to put words on the page. It took a long time for me to figure out that the best thing for me to do was sit down and actually look at what was going on in my life. When I took that step back and looked at my life, it was no surprise that I couldn’t write and didn’t have the heart for it. The causes she listed for losing the love of writing? I’ve had all of them. Am I writing today? Yes. I forgave myself. Developed a lot of patience with myself, and eventually moved on. Not easy at all, but it can be done.

    • kwpadmin says:

      Heather, what a wonderful testimony to self-care, self-awareness, coming out of denial, and all the rest. When I got honest with myself, it was no surprise for me either! It has to be watched almost daily! So easy to slip back… :-)

  2. Vijaya says:

    I seem t remember reading that article at a time when I was fighting fatigue … I still fight it, but it’s no longer drop-dead. I just have to pace myself better throughout the day.

    • kwpadmin says:

      I fight fatigue too, Vijaya. Chronic pain wears a person out some days. And it’s amazing what a good night’s sleep can do! I judge my writing quite differently when I’m not exhausted, and that’s been good to remember!

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