Reclaiming your Creative
IWSG-Insecure Writers Support Group

Reclaiming the Creative Drive IWSG

Finding the will to write

This is my post for The Insecure Writers Support Group: a monthly blog hop therapy group for writers.

(If you’re here for my writing lessons and have no need for this warm-fuzzy-feeling stuff, I’ll see you on Friday.)

The awesome co-hosts for the April 4 posting of the IWSG are Olga Godim, Chemist Ken, Renee Scattergood, and Tamara Narayan!

If you’d like to sign up, click here

April 4 question – When your writing life is a bit cloudy or filled with rain, what do you do to dig down and keep on writing?

What I do when I get into a writing funk

(Well, after the coffee, the chocolate, and moping around the house for days.)

My road to recovery in three steps:

1. Reread my first novel

reclaiming your creative

“Oh, wow, was I an awful writer.” The painful writing that is my first novel never grows stale. It’s a master class in telling, bizarrely constructed sentences, (random comma, anyone?) and not to mention a head-hopping nightmare. All this coated in a thick layer of beyond-epic dialogue. All ye Lords and Ladies take heed!

Aside from a few good laughs, the real purpose of rereading this nonsense is to remind myself of how much progress I have made as a writer since that first NaNoWriMo. Writing can be a long lonely road where you are constantly huddling into a corner and quietly comparing your work to other writers while making silent bargains with the devil to be half as good as… But revisiting my old manuscripts reminds me that my former self would have given anything to be as good as I am now, and while I still have a long way to go, I am making progress.

2. Edit other people’s stuff (no, not for the reason you think)

If I’m being completely honest, I’m a better editor than a writer. I also feel more passionate about editing. Taking apart stories, cutting them down to their essence, and rebuilding them stronger is my zone. Nothing makes me happier than when an author tells me, “Oh, that makes so much sense. Thank you.” Editing gives me the boost I need to tackle my own projects.

3. Read for inspiration

Nothing helps me rekindle the creative spark like reading my favorite genre (YA fantasy). Seeing new places, meeting new characters, and hearing new ideas. This is what gets my wheels turning again. Many of my ideas are inspired by other stories: side characters who deserve their own narrative or a scenario that could have had an alternative outcome. This is why I love fantasy. Alternative worlds contain endless possibilities.

Reading reminds me why I write: my love for stories.

If you found this article useful, please share it with other writers on social media. Thanks!

Have something to add? Leave a comment. I love hearing from readers.

M.L. Keller is a freelance writer and editor. Her blog "The Manuscript Shredder" is focused on helping emerging writers hone their craft.


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