Tuesday, December 6, 2011

Take A Vacation From Your Writing - You'll Be Surprised What You Find

O.K. There are two points I want to make here.

First of all, I am taking a break with the family. That means you are on your own with blog posts here until sometime around the 15th of the month. Sorry, I need that break.

But, here is the more important part. You need to take a break, every now and then, from your writing to get a new perspective on things. Too often, writers find themselves in a case of tunnel vision from working far too hard on a story. Sometimes you simply have to step away.

Think of it this way. How often, while you are doing something completely random, that you remember something you need to do on another project. Sometimes we remember this during our sleep. For me, it is always while I am cleaning house or cooking dinner. During that "mentally relaxing period" my brain doesn't have to work hard. It is a chance to unclog the pipes a bit and suddenly we can figure out those problems that we have been fighting with on some other project.

As a writer, you have to do the same thing. If you are struggling on a current story. Leave it. Do something else. Write some other completely different genre. Go blog. Go enjoy time with your family.

You'll be shocked, you will find the answer you are looking for when you aren't thinking about it.



  1. Life forced me to take a break from my writing. It wasn't what I wanted to do; it was what I had to do and the family issues that took me away really blew a hole in me. I was actually thinking of giving it up. Then I got a contributor's copy of a magazine with one of my poems in it. I'd completely forgotten about it in all the drama. Publication reminded me why I do what I do and I'm energized about taking a fresh look at my manuscript. The point is - yes, you do have to take breaks sometimes, but you also have to keep on doing what you're supposed to do - and that's writing and submitting.

  2. So true. It's the months I'm not working on my manuscript that help me have the a-ha moment of what isn't working. Balance is so important. And laundry has to get done. Sometimes that's when I have a story breakthrough.

  3. What terrific advice. I couldn't agree more with you on this. I practice mini "vacations" from my writing and its amazing how much new and creative insight I gain from doing so. :)