All I ever wanted to be was an author. I’ve known that since I was nine years old. There was nothing I wanted more, and no goal I worked harder towards, than becoming an author. I had so many big ideas that I was so excited to write and, after eleven years of writing, after every personal struggle I faced, I released my first book. I published Hellhound’s Delight in 2018.
I was so excited. Hellhound’s Delight was proof to myself that I could do it. I could really be a published author. I was ready to write my next book.
Until I wasn’t. I still had so many big ideas that were ready to be written and so many ideas that were turned into solid plans, but nothing made it onto the page. I was still writing, of course, forever tweaking endless ideas until they were planned out to death, and I wasn’t excited about them anymore, but no matter how hard I tried to put words – real words – on a page, the pages stayed blank.
Days turned into weeks. Weeks turned into months. Months turned into years, and suddenly I wake up in May 2022 and realize that I haven’t written anything in almost four years, like the passion and inspiration that burned for so long in me had fizzled out.
It wasn’t stress (though those years were stressful; finishing college and dealing with a global pandemic does that to you) and I don’t know that you can call it writer’s block either. It's more like creative block, like that part of myself, the part I was proudest of, died, and I hadn’t even noticed until it was too late.
Those were hard days, and I had to ask myself hard questions, things I never imagined I’d have to ask. Am I really a writer? Have I spent so much of my life working towards a goal that isn’t really mine? Do I even want to write anymore?
(If you’ve made it this far, and are starting to worry, don’t. This story has a happy ending.)
I struggled. I struggled for a while to answer those questions. For so long, writing has been part of my identity. To question myself as a writer, to ask if I even wanted to do it anymore, felt like I was questioning myself as a person. If I wasn’t a writer and never had been, who was I? If I didn’t want to write anymore, who would I be?
There’s nothing fun about looking yourself in the mirror and asking tough questions, but I had to do it. I was never going to move forward – in any direction – without the answers and, once I had answers, there were some things I needed to accept.
I’m not, and never was, a writer because I can write well or because it comes easily. I’m a writer because I don’t know any other way to express myself. It’s the part of me that is braver and bolder than I ever knew I could be. I could never write another story as long as I live, and I would still be a writer – and I will write another story (told you there’s a happy ending).
Now if only writing stories was as easy as several months' worth of soul-searching. I wish I could say that the words came back to me when I found answers to the questions that scared me; they didn’t. I’m still struggling to put words on paper, but I’m trying. Every day, I try to write more than I did the day before. Sometimes I do, most days I don’t, but I’m not giving up.
So, if you made it to the end, you’re probably wondering why I decided to share this after staying quiet for so long. Well, the real answer is that I’m hoping you’ll root for me. Starting November 1, I intend to participate in National Novel Writing Month for the first time in a very long time. My goal is 50,000 words in 30 days. I don’t know if I’ll finish, but I’m going to try. Wish me luck!
Want to follow my progress? Check back here daily for updates, starting November 1!
TOTAL WORD COUNT: 56,251 WORDS
These past few years, facing a global pandemic, have been difficult for everyone. It's not an exaggeration to say that the world has been changed forever and the impact of these changes are still obvious.
Going remote, having important life events disrupted, and losing people I cared about made these years difficult. It's not an exaggeration to say that, at times, I lost my passion for writing. It was hard to write when it felt like everything was going wrong in the world.
Thankfully, as the world emerges from the dark days of COVID and returns to a sense of normal - whatever this new normal may be, it seems like my love for writing has returned. I'm back to work on the projects I'm passionate about and you'll be seeing so much more coming to soon.
Thank you, everyone, for sticking around and sticking with me.