Fifty Thousand Words

Okay, so I went through a bad patch with Cannibal Hearts.  To be honest, I was really despairing for a while.   I tried to keep the worst of it out of this blog, because I try to be encouraging rather than discouraging here, but there was close to a month that I couldn’t write a damned thing.

Well, I broke through that, and since then I have been doing really well.  I don’t know exactly how I did it, except that I let myself take the time off that I needed, and I kept telling myself that I would finish it… someday.

I think that’s part of the process, or part of my process, anyway.  I go through creative spurts and then I run out of steam, I get exhausted.  Writing is work, and I pushed myself pretty hard in January and February. Am I pushing myself again?  I don’t know.  Probably.  I’m not doing it deliberately, but I’ve never been good at pacing myself.

Poets are sprinters, we burn bright and hot and we burn out.  Writing a novel is more like a marathon.  Here’s hoping my endurance improves.



About MishaBurnett

I am the author of "Catskinner's Book", a science fiction novel available on Amazon Kindle.
This entry was posted in Cannibal Hearts, On Writing and tagged , , , , . Bookmark the permalink.

4 Responses to Fifty Thousand Words

  1. greenembers says:

    I totally understand this. Writing drains me so much. I am just not conditioned to it.

  2. jolaidlaw says:

    I’m so pleased you wrote this. I haven’t written one word of my book since April. But I’ve had my two busiest months ever as a copywriter (the day job). The combination of really not having time and being fairly drained when I do have it is not good for my word count! But 70 hours plus a week of writing ‘other stuff’ is still 70 hours of writing and there’s only so many words I can churn out… Sad face though. I can’t wait to get back to a better balance.

  3. Vagrance says:

    I know exactly what you mean.

  4. When first tried writing a novel, I tried treating it like a sprint like I did with everything else. That ended badly. Really badly.

    When things stop going well, I think that it is important to take a break from your WIP: writing while feeling frustrated is difficult and so attempting to do so is counterproductive. One idea I’ve heard is to try switching to another project rather than stop writing altogether, though I’ve never tried putting that into practice.

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