Friday, September 30, 2011

The Writer's Rush

Holly, I promise to get to posts about writing craft soon. ;)

Today I'm going to answer Caroline Bridge's question. She blogs at Untitlement, and you should really check out the book covers she's made. They are all To. Die. For. I loved what she wrote with her question, so I'm putting all of it here for you to see.
Does that insane rush of first love ever return in your writing career? When I first started writing fiction, I felt like I'd discovered superpowers, a link to a fantastic new world, the candy room in Willy Wonka's factory. I still enjoy it, but there isn't that all-consuming fire anymore.
Oh, how I love that feeling she's describing. You know, when that spark of an idea takes root deep in your heart and you can't help but think about it day and night. *sigh* It really is the best feeling in the world.

I've been writing off and on for the last eight years--"playing" for most of it, but serious for the last three. And I have to say, I don't always feel that rush, the impulse that I have to write immediately or I'll go crazy. Sometimes I have to make myself sit down for "writing time". I don't think there's anything wrong with that, and I've never worried about it.


Over the last three years, I've learned that writing is a lot of work. And I'm good with that.
But I stick with it because shiny new ideas still make me giddy. Finger itchy, impatient to get quiet computer time, ready to explore a new world, giddy.
If you're not feeling that rush of first love you might need a short break. Or just a different idea. Or maybe a new slant on an idea you like, but it just isn't doing it all for you, if you know what I mean?

What do the rest of you do when you need to feel that writing rush? Where do you turn for ideas?

I think I'm just a naturally patient person (most of the time), and so when a few months go by without the rush I don't worry. There is always a new crazy dream floating around waiting to catch my attention.

Sometimes the rush only lasts a few hours or days. Those ideas get sketched and filed away. The ones that haunt me are the ones I keep coming back to. Talia. Ryanne, Elyzbeth, Elina. Some of their stories have been in my head since I was a teen. I still feel a rush when I read through what I've written. One of these days they will be polished enough that they'll make their way into the world. I don't think I could keep working and taking rejection if I didn't feel that love for their stories.

Funny, but I still don't think of them as MY stories. There's a secret hope inside me that tells me this is good. Who am I? No one. But these girls are amazing! I just have to find all the right words and string them together in the right order.

Caroline, you've made me excited for writing time today. Thanks!


  1. It's like any love in life, isn't it? You don't always "feel" the feelings, but our commitment to it brings its own rewards. Thanks for a great post!

  2. At the moment, I'm not feeling that rush of a great idea, but hopefully soon!

  3. Thanks for posting my question! I love your thoughts, and I love Elle Strauss's reply. I've known my husband for 18 years and we've been married for ten, so I know just what's she's talking about. Great analogy.

    I'm looking forward to the next idea that will possess me.

    [I LOVE making book covers. Glad you liked them. :) ]

  4. The secret to enjoying the rush is taking a break. You need distance from the craft. George R.R. Martin (for example) never writes during the winter. He takes all those months off to just watch football, get fatter, and paint frickin' miniatures that he puts on his Lego castle. He could give a crap if people are waiting for his next book because as Neil Gaiman passed along for him, "George R.R. Martin is not your bitch"...

    I just realized I was ranting...sorry. Anyway...yeah take a break.

  5. Elle, you said it perfectly. If the commitment isn't there, it would be too easy to walk away. Good to know some things are worth sticking it out for, isn't it.

    Alex, it'll come. You're probably worn out from all the editing.

    Thank you for the question Caroline! My hubby and I have known each other for 25 years now and been married 15 of them. I didn't get Elle's reference, but I totally understand yours!

    Michael, great rant, thanks for sharing.

  6. my beta reader gives me crits in a way that makes me want to improve and get right to it!

    and my first short stories have that new love feeling in them. i love that feeling!

  7. Having been married for seven years, I understand the 'relationship' analogy entirely. At the moment, I have a shiny new idea that's making it very hard for me to concentrate on editing Tangled. Thankfully my 'marriage eyes' aren't so easily tempted. :-)

  8. I love that excited for writing feeling!

  9. I'm still feeling the rush after writing a couple of hundred short stories. Each one is different, especialy as I hop around the genres. Thanks so much for this post. It's made me realise something. I think this is one of my problems with novel writing. I'm missing the rush.


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