Okay guys, so I finished draft 1 of my WIP last week and it was pretty much one of the best feelings EVER. I printed it out, hole punched it and put it in its own folder, ready for editing when I go back to it in a month or two. I was pretty much like this:
And then suddenly, my adrenaline from finishing draft 1 evaporated. I had written out THE idea I had for a story. Sure there had been others milling around in my head, but were they any good? What if they were exactly the same as the first idea? Suddenly every idea I had seemed done and old and unoriginal and boring.
Then I googled. I know – it was stupid – and I found LOADS of blog posts about how the second book was SO MUCH HARDER THEN THE FIRST. I then began to think about all those lucky people that had SO many amazing ideas and wrote them so well and how I was never ever going to compare to them. At this point I was pretty freaked out – I don’t know whether it was the combination of finishing draft 1 and a general lack of sleep but I ended up watching TV in my PJ’s and eating a tub of Ben & Jerrys for the rest of the day. I was having one of my why-are-you-even-trying-to-be-a-writer-just-give-up moments. It sucked.
But after a good nights sleep and a healthy dose of perspective, I found myself sitting at the computer screen frantically typing up notes on ideas for BOOK 2. I then did a Pinterest board (because I’m addicted to pinning) and wrote some more. I started to get really excited to start writing something new, something different and the self doubt and loathing from the night before just kind of melted away. I started to feel kind of good about myself again:
So I guess what I’m trying to say is that self doubt is part of life, but sometimes sleeping and ice cream and a little perspective makes all the difference. As writers you are constantly criticising and comparing yourself to others – Do they have an agent? Are they more active on Twitter? Is their book SO much better then anything you will ever write?
THIS IS BAD. I am awful at this, and I am trying to stop. If you compare yourself to others you will never reach your best. All you can do is focus on yourself and be the best you that you can be. So whether you are on the very first page of your very first story, or draft gazillion of your 11th – FOCUS ON YOURSELF.
And anybody stuck in that dreaded place between setting aside one project and starting another, stick in there – An idea will come.