As a writer, I hate to admit the following. At the same time, however, I think it’s important for us to share our experiences with other writers – to show each other that we’re not alone in our writerly struggles. So tonight I’d like to talk about feeling stuck when working on our stories and other written work.
I’ve mentioned in earlier posts that I’m working on a romance/fantasy novel. While I love the concept of the story, the plot, and the characters, I feel like I’m having a bit of a hard time getting from points A to B. I have a pretty good idea of how I want the story to end and what I want to happen throughout the course of the novel, but actually writing the story is proving to be a bit more challenging than expected.
The problem I’m having is that I feel a lack of action in the story. As I was writing, I just slowly felt like I was losing momentum, like the story was stalling and I wasn’t sure where to go next. The need to come up with something ‘big’ to take place seems essential and at the moment, I don’t know what that ‘big’ event is going to be.
While in a way I guess you could consider this issue writer’s block, I consider it more along the lines of being stuck. To me, writer’s block is not knowing what you want to write and being completely devoid of ideas. I know what I want to write; where I want my story to go. It’s just that getting there seems a bit tricky and I’m still trying to figure out how to figure out the gaps so that my story can be a successful one.
I may be experiencing some issues with my current work in progress, but I’m not ready to give up on it. I actually quite like what I’m working on and abandoning the story is not something I want to do. While I hate the fact that I’m stuck and that the story is at the moment just sitting there, waiting to be written, I’m not ready to walk away. I see a lot of potential and that’s what’s important.
If you’re going through the same thing that I am and you like your story, yet feel a bit confused as to how to get from points A to B, don’t be too quick to give up on your project. Sometimes what we’re working on takes a week and sometimes it takes a year. Heck, it might even take longer. The amount of time it takes to write your short story, novel, poem, or other piece of writing doesn’t necessarily matter. What truly matters is that you’re happy with what you write and that you feel it’s done properly.
Here’s a piece of advice: if your having a difficult time with your work in progress, take a break. If you still like the idea, characters, and overall plot, read over your story and try hard to think of what to do next. Don’t immediately abandon your project just because you’re struggling with it. Just because something takes time to write and isn’t the easiest work to produce, doesn’t mean it doesn’t deserve to be written.