Monday, April 7, 2014

F is for Fun

Are you having fun writing?

If not, then this post is for you!!

Writing is hard work! Don't ever let anyone tell you different. I mean, authors have to come up with an idea that is unique enough we're not accused of plagiarism, write the story, revise, revise, revise, fill plot holes, keep the readers' attention, create real life, likable characters, make complete strangers love our characters and our worlds.

Like I said, it's hard work. But that doesn't mean it isn't fun. Okay, so maybe not all the revisions, but the actual writing should be fun. Think back to the very first book you've ever written. Do you remember that excitement you felt? That constant need and desire to always be living in your fictional world, to want to spend every waking moment with your characters? The dreams you had about them? The inspiration that was washing over you every time you turned around? Now, ask yourself, do you feel that way about what you're currently writing?

No? Then you're doing something wrong because writing should be fun. I'm not saying it's not difficult, because it is, but if you're not having fun.... Why are you doing it?

This is something I struggled with recently. Writing felt more like something I had to do instead of something I wanted to do. All the fun had been sucked out of it. Here are some of the things I did to overcome those feelings:

1. I stopped writing. I know. I know. As writers we're always told to keep writing. Write every day. But when I wasn't having fun doing it, I stopped. I mean, honestly, why would you continue to do something you weren't enjoying? For about a month, I didn't write a word on any of my books. There was no pressure to meet word count goals or self-imposed deadlines. It was very relaxing.

2. I read. A lot! During my month off, I think I read nine or ten books. Mostly young adult books, which is outside of my realm. Typically I read adult romances, so it was a nice change of pace to read a new genre. And I learned a lot, too!

3. I attended writers groups. I'm lucky enough to be a member of a weekly writers group and a monthly romance writers group. I made it a point to attend more meetings during my down time. Just being around other writers, hearing them talk about their projects, and talking craft was enough to make me want to jump back into my WIPs.

4. I wrote something just for me. When I finally decided to devote time to writing again, I started by writing a story I had floating around in my mind for some time. It's something I don't think I'll ever publish simply because I don't think there would ever be a market for it, but it's a story I'm really excited about. I have fun writing it, and that's exactly what I was looking to get back.

Has anyone else ever lost the fun of writing? How'd you deal with it? Share your tips in the comments :)

9 comments:

  1. Hey Kara, when i started my blog to redirect my negative energies from the post partum depression, i wrote some awesome posts. Lot of people told me about how wonderful it was and shared it on FB and all. After that, it became routine and at one point i was writing just to follow trend.

    I took a break from my laptop, think it kills creativity. Took my diary and pen and then resumed for better.

    Haven't heard from you lately on my posts, oh ! no comments are also a put-off for writers ;)
    http://sinhasat302.blogspot.in/2014/04/6-folly-good-fellows-outside-labour-room.html#comment-form

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    1. Hey! Good to see you again :-) I'll be honest....I'm struggling a bit to keep up. I'm under some major deadlines. Don't worry, I promise to catch up on your posts. I'm really enjoying your story!

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  2. Stopping by on the 7th day of the #Challenge looking for fellow writers. I enjoyed your F post….and I agree that if it isn't fun, then why bother. That doesn't mean we don't let other reasons keep us from writing….like all this social media we love too. I translated Fun to mean, in our heads we write even when we aren't writing and enjoy the process. If you have time or interest, I am writing about gardening and related topics this month. Come visit.

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    1. Thanks for stopping by Stepheny! Yes, social media definitely keeps us away from writing, doesn't it? I'm notorious for writing full scenes in my mind, and then when I do sit down to write it, I forget everything. lol. Visited your blog and loved your theme :-)

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  3. Hi Kara, I thought this was a good post, and yes, I think writing is fun and hard work combined together. Google+ is addictive and I have to restrain myself from staying on all day, as it will keep my from writing. Writing groups are our support systems. Hope to see more of your posts and thanks for coming by mine.

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    1. Hi Michelle! Thanks for stopping by :-) I have a serious Twitter addiction. That's not necessarily a bad thing though....I've gotten a lot of inspiration from social media!

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  4. Great post, Kara, although I'm not sure some of the non-fiction writing I've done is what you can call fun. Writing about Mom and Dad's funny antics is fun, but digging around in the emotions of caregiving is, well, not so much. What is fun, or fulfilling, is the comments you get from people who have been touched by your work. I agree, though, that when the writing becomes drudgery, it is time to step away for a bit. I'm glad your break has left you refreshed and ready to go.
    Blessings,
    Linda

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  5. Thanks for the tips. I tend to read more than write. *sigh* hopefully one day that will change. =)

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  6. I've never liked writing. I was forced to do it in a college and hated it even more. That's how I started my IHateWritingEssays blog. Maybe you have more tips on how to tackle it? That would be great to read more insights.

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