Insecure Writer’s Support Group March 2013 and Birth of a Novel

Since I’m not going to blog this month, I’m combining my IWSG and Birth of a Novel posts this week. After this, I’ll just be putting up pre-scheduled guest slots. You’ll see why below.

Purpose: To share and encourage. Writers can express doubts and concerns without fear of appearing foolish or weak. Those who have been through the fire can offer assistance and guidance. It’s a safe haven for insecure writers of all kinds!

Posting: The first Wednesday of every month is officially Insecure Writer’s Support Group day. Post your thoughts on your own blog. Talk about your doubts and the fears you have conquered. Discuss your struggles and triumphs. Offer a word of encouragement for others who are struggling. Visit others in the group and connect with your fellow writer.

Thank you Alex Cavanaugh for keeping this great community going!

This month I want to get back to work. February was a lot of fun, but if I don’t get writing it’ll never happen again. The plan is to not blog this month and use that time to do one of two things.

  1. Prepare all my posts for the April A to Z Challenge
  2. Finish the 1st draft of my sequel

So far things are going okay. I’ve written drafts of the posts through G. I’ve done a bit of writing as well, however it wasn’t on book 2. It was on book 4!

The second to the last scene in Talia’s story was really shouting at me over the weekend. In fact, every time a certain song came on the radio I just bawled. Many of you know I’m a professed cry baby, but this song just hit me. I’ve heard it many times and remained unmoved. But the words sunk in and I visualized Talia feeling them to her very core. 

I had to sit and write the scene. The setting wasn’t really there, and I wasn’t sure how they got to this point in the story, but the dialogue was solid and real in my head. And that’s what I jotted down. Over 600 words of this painfully beautiful conversation between two people I’ve grown to love. Now I have to fill in all the blank spaces in between the end of The Magic Wakes and Here There Be Dragons. My hope is that now I’ve listened to my characters and saved the inspiration, they’ll let me get back to writing The Search For Knowledge, which is currently sitting at 39,200 comfortable words.

However, I keep opening the doc, looking at it, and then closing it. Most of those words are in 1st person and need to be re-written into 3rd to match TMW. But I keep thinking I should finish the story line first and worry about rewriting later. Or maybe I’ll rewrite first to get back into the story. *sigh*

Here’s where the insecurity comes in. Well, it’s more like frustration.

I’ve suffered bouts of depression off and on for years. Even though my head tells me to go seek medical help, I’m stubborn. I always think I can fix it myself. It isn’t as bad as some people experience, and it’s mostly in the gray gloominess of winter, but it stinks.

I WANT to sit and write.

My body wants to lie in bed and sleep.

When I’m sleeping I can dream all these wonderful stories. I can live them. I can feel all these emotions. But when I’m awake I’m empty. The only thing I really feel is guilt.


Because I have a wonderful life. There’s nothing wrong with it. I have a great husband who works hard to provide for me and our children. My kids are smart, healthy and independent. And funny! I have friends who love me and support me. I’m healthy. So what’s wrong with me?

I think I wrote more of myself into Talia than I realized. I need the sun shining on me, renewing me and energizing me in order to feel whole. It’s not even spring and I miss my North Carolina back yard. Where am I going to sit and write? I’ve got a postage stamp surrounded by a big wooden fence. No trees. (See how much I’m like Talia? I NEED trees!)

How am I going to make myself write when I don’t want to do anything? (I’m writing this post Tuesday at 1 pm and I’m still in my pjs–I’ll change in time to walk to the bus stop.) My head knows and understands what’s wrong and what I should do to feel better.

  • Exercise
  • Shower
  • Accomplish something

So why is it so hard to make myself do what I know I should?


About charitybradford

Science fiction and fantasy writer and blogger. My first novel is now available--The Magic Wakes (WiDo Publishing, 2013)

Posted on March 6, 2013, in Birth of a Novel, IWSG, music, Personal Journaling, World of Sendek. Bookmark the permalink. 24 Comments.

  1. I complained yesterday about the lack of sunshine. I believe you and I live in the same state. Sunshine will be here again someday soon. Until then, carry on. You can do it!

  2. You just had some major events in your life between the move and the book release. A let-down period of 'blah' afterwards is natural.You can crank it back up again. And you've written part of the fourth book, so you know where you are going!

  3. Winter really bums me out too and exercising really helps out. Golf is the best stress relief in my life personally and so winter is especially hard (I lose the ball in the snow).Focus on what you have accomplished rather than what you haven't (yet)!

  4. Very true! And you did warn me. Last night I went to the gym and that helped a lot.

  5. I can see how golf would be relaxing. Thanks C!

  6. The sun is shining today thank goodness! And I got all my baking done yesterday so all I have to do today is decorate this cake and I'll have accomplished something. I'm hoping for a good writing day tomorrow.

  7. Bah, I hate depression. (This is where I think of The Far Side comic where two guys are sitting in Hell and one of them says to the other, "I really hate this place.")I did some web searching on this topic lately, because Oldest Daughter gets SAD every winter. Did you know you can get a sunburn in front of a window, but you can't get vitamin D production? So much for our awesome natural light. I've thought of getting one of those lights that does trigger vitamin D–my friend says it works for her daughter.

  8. I know that feeling, I feel the same; thanks for sharing. I should try the music thing, then maybe I can finally write endings to all my stories, lol!

  9. Sorry to hear this, but I agree with Alex; 'you are bound to experience some let down after what's been happening in your life'. Personally, I think it's wonderful that you wrote the end to your last book. Often I do that. I like to know where I'm going. Hang in there and hang on. Exercise is good, work is good and so is some chocolate.

  10. Yeah, as for the lack of sunshine, I've been shaking my fists at the sky for a while. It's cloudy, and there's a comet I want to see! Darn you sky. I heartily approve of your plan. I use workouts a lot to get over my unhappy patches. Good luck.

  11. I agree with farawayeyes…chocolate helps. 🙂 It sounds like you're coping with some major life changes and need time to adjust. It's okay to give your self that time. Curl up with a good book. Continue exercising AND most importantly lean on people when you need to. Its wonderful that you have a supportive husband. Maybe it would help if you wrote about what's holding you back (like a journal entry). That way you won't feel like you have to be creative, you can just write what's on your mind. Then, delete/burn it and let the 'issues' go. For me, it helps to figure out what's really bothering me and then give myself permission to let it go.BTW — I love trees and sunshine, too! Talia sounds like my kind of character.+++ Sending positive thoughts your way through the blogosphere, Charity. ++++

  12. Ooo! When is the comet coming? I did go to the gym last night and today started better. There's just 100 things to do today for church tonight. Blah! At least the sun is shining.

  13. I'll have to try more vitamin D. Who knows if I even get that in my carb rich diet. LOL. Thanks Edith!

  14. Yes! The good news is that since I wrote the scene I no longer cry when I hear the song. That's good since most of my radio time is when I'm driving. :)Good luck!

  15. Oo! That reminds me I have one of my favorite dark chocolate bars hidden in my desk. Thanks! I had a good talk with hubby last night and just let him know I needed a little "extra" love and attention this week. I think that will help too. I should say that the only reason I went to the gym last night was because my 13 year old asked to go run with me while my 6 year old was in karate. Perhaps getting the whole family involved and helping is a winning solution as well.

  16. Thanks for the positive thoughts Natasha! I think getting back to my private journal is a great idea. It was my lifeline in the past, but I've been too busy to get to it the last few months. A good emotional purging is in order! 🙂

  17. I loved your post! As a beginner to writing….there is so much to learn, and I will be certain to include more chocolate and some exercise! lol….can you explain to me when you say writing as the 1st person and 3rd person…what does that mean? Thanks, sandysanderellasmusings

  18. Hi Sandy! 1st person is when you write as if you were the character. You use I, me, my etc. 3rd person is more of a narrator looking down on the scene–his, her, their, etc. There are different kinds of 3rd person, but let's keep it simple today.The trick is really getting in someone's head with 3rd person so the reader feels connected. I like both, but chose 3rd for my story because I have scenes with different character's "in charge". It works because my main character couldn't be in each scene for things to work the way I wanted. Good luck with your writing!

  19. Hi Charity. Depression is tough and we need sunshine to naturally trigger seratonin (the happy drug) in our brain. Exercising outdoors when there's sun helps. Chocolate has the same affect of triggering happiness. Give yourself time.

  20. Hi Charity,I know the winter has been so long. Hopefully, when it warms up you'll be feeling better. I find it helps to make a list of all the positive things in your life, which it seems you've already done in this post.

  21. I'm sure there's a great percentage of writers who've battled depression at some point in their lives – even at multiple points – myself included. I'm glad you've made a plan that you're happy with and hope the dreariness wanes away. One thing that helps me is fish oil supplements.Hope you are successful during this writing time.

  22. I understand exactly what you are going through. I lived in Indiana for six years through college, and I was depressed during the winters. I needed to move to Florida again, because I craved the sunshine. I can never move from here.

  23. I went through a time like this after a major move (along with other big events happening in my family's life) and felt just like you describe. I met a woman at church one day who worked as a grief counselor and we started talking. I shared my feelings (usually I kept things inside and put on the happy face), and she said, "You are grieving." And she told me all the reasons people can grieve– a major move, kids becoming teens (loss of the child you once knew), and other things unrelated to death or tragedy. She said I'd need to go through the stages of grief and then it would be okay, I wouldn't always feel like this. She was right.

  24. I know what it's like to be so blah and tired. I found some great pills for that.Spring is coming…

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