Writing Wednesday: Slow and steady?

I’ve been working on myself a lot this past month. Dealing with the pandemic and my own anxiety and depressive disorders has been a real fight. As a result, writing is not a daily event and I’m working on not beating myself up for it. My therapist says I need to learn to be gentle with myself. Feel free to chuckle at this, if you know me at all. I can push myself, I can demand things of myself, and I can refuse to accept less…

Gentle? With myself? Uh…

So, in practicing being gentle, I’ve allowed myself to say “I have no brain space for writing today,” and letting that be the way the day goes. It’s crazy hard for me to overcome the “you’re being lazy” recordings in my head, so the fact that I CAN take the time away from writing to take care of my mental and physical health. On Monday I let myself have a day to just be sick. I went out last week and ended up catching something that wrecked me from Friday on through the weekend. So, Monday I imitated a throw pillow. I laid on the couch under a warm blanket and watched TV between naps.

The payoff was that I finally finished the first run of chapter 7 in the Half-Life series. I’m super proud of that because the chapter was emotionally loaded and writing that much emotion while already in a heightened state was impossible. Allowing myself to rest, not making demands of myself, put me in a place where I was physically and mentally able to finish it.

I expect more challenging moments but I’m just not giving up. This story is going to be so much fun to finish writing, and I think you’ll all enjoy reading it, too. In this regard, being gentle with myself has a limit because I have to finish this one. The deeper into it I get, the more I want to go forward. I literally think about and even dream about this world constantly. It’s becoming an obsession. That’s a good thing because it means the story is alive for me and once the world of the story is alive and the characters are breathing on their own, the story is going to happen and will mostly write itself. It’s an exciting place to be as a writer.

I hope everyone reading this is doing well, taking care of yourselves, and staying safe out there. Feel free to send me a shout out at any time. I will respond!

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