Friday, October 21, 2016

Why I Feel Like I'm a Writing Failure

Hi everyone! I've been kind of down in the dumps lately in regards to blogging. I think taking such a long break kind of killed a lot of my motivation for writing. I kept having a lot of ideas but I didn't really write them down or actually plan out blog posts and now that I've finally got time to write, I have no more material than I had when I set the blog on hiatus. Nevertheless I'm going to be trying my best to get back in the groove by talking about why I feel like a writing failure.

Everybody feels that way every now and then. But everyone's feelings stem from different reasons. Some of us feel like failures because we're busy comparing ourselves, some of us feel like failures because people tell us we can't succeed, and some of us feel like failures because we're told that writing can't earn your money.

I currently feel like a failure because there are so many things I should be doing right now but I just can't make myself get up and do it. I log in to blogger every day and I scroll down my posts tab. Let me tell you something, I have a dozen posts under "drafts" and all of them are just titles with maybe a measly paragraph or two written below. All my drafts are essential just drafts- rough posts, ideas, every time I get inspired with a cool title or a cool subject, I make a post on blogger.

When it comes to sitting down and genuinely writing a post though, I get kind of stuck. And what can I do? Here's a couple of things I spent my time doing and how I felt like doing these things didn't really help:

  • I borrowed a book from my friend to read for the weekend. It's a great book, don't get me wrong, but while reading it, I didn't feel relaxed. At the back of my head, I was constantly thinking "I need to start writing posts on my blog. I've been on a hiatus for quite a while. If I never pick up the pace, I'll lose myself" with occasional thoughts like "Ooh this paragraph is nice, I should blog about this book". Let me tell you something, it's been an entire week since I finished reading that book and I have not been able to pick it up again to actually write a book review post.
  • I watched a couple of Youtube videos. Nothing too ridiculous, I just felt that I needed to know a little bit of coding as a blogger. I went through a couple of simple tutorials about creating an HTML document and how you can build a bare skeletal blogpost (this was a great video by the way, I really enjoyed watching it and the narration was very simple and easy). The problem with watching these videos was that I got distracted by the videos on the side and ended watching stuff like How To Make A Cartoon Profile Picture, Zoella's Cute Hair Bun (but it's actually a blogging video but her bun is really cute), 10 Instagram Hacks, and yeah, you get the gist of it. So while I did pick up a couple of interesting tips and things I could do, I still wasn't able to sit on blogger and type out the words I had in my head.
  • I started playing a few new games I haven't played before. I thought I could write reviews about them, so I delved into the games and had a lot of fun, but again, my attention span seemed pretty short! I couldn't really immerse myself in for long. I started out with playing The Witcher and I was really excited about the game and I was able to crank out an entire post about the hilarious adventures I was having. But as I went on and on, I was starting to think it was impossible to document everything I was doing! There was just so much happening and I didn't know if my audience would like to read about something so detailed! I moved on and started playing a game on my phone (which I won't talk about just yet because I still have to write a post on it!) which kind of messed up my sleeping schedule to be exact. The next game I started playing was Path of Exile and while that game was also fun, it too deserves a post of it's own.... Which I'll write..... sometime.... soon....
So you see, doing all of these things gave me tons of ideas and titles to work with, but it didn't give me the drive to sit down and do anything about it. It gave me a false feeling of accomplishment- when you have a gigantic project or essay to write, and you've finally hammered out a table of contents or structure to work with but you haven't written a single paragraph. But you feel like you did a lot, right? I mean, you look at your work and you can see exactly what you need to do next. 

It didn't take me very long to realize that I was stuck with a type of writer's block!

I decided to go search this topic up on Google and see what other writers and bloggers have to say about dealing with this kind of situation. Of course, everybody has their bits of standard advice, all along the lines of do something different. Shake up your routine! Read a book, listen to music, go for a walk, etc etc.

All of which I've already done.

((I think I'll have to reiterate though. My kind of writing block isn't a deficiency of ideas. It's the deficiency of writing itself. If you have a deficiency of ideas, let me know and I'll share my fountain of ideas with you, because believe me, I have tons of ideas. I do not lie.))

Anyway, I came across this really nice article here, a guest post by Brian Moreland (a writer I've never heard of before but am thrilled to find out he writes historical horror and supernatural suspense). Personally, I think you should go read the original article, because I'm only going to mention the first two points, which I really liked (the water glass one is something I really don't like, its way too hard core xD).

Brian Moreland's first tip is this; do anything creative. Anything.

You heard that? Take out your dusty old paints and brushes. Or your half melted crayons. What about the notebook you bought to make a journal out of? Just work on it! If you can't make something with words just yet, make something with your hands. I didn't even know about this tip, but I had certainly been working on my art journal a little bit at a time everyday. Sometimes I browse pinterest and tumblr for inspiration, sometimes I paint a first layer and sometimes I ink in quotes and writing. But I'm always working a little bit every day. So far, over the course of maybe six months of starting an art journal, I have finished one spread.

I found the tiger sketch from a mess of art I found when I was cleaning out my stuff (we moved houses). I must have drawn it when I was eleven or twelve. I think the old me would be horrified to find out I've painted the tiger green.
There are lots of art bloggers out there, the most notable might be Areeba, who seem to be cranking out journal pages every few days. At first I thought that there was something wrong with me, for being unable to stick to the page and work on it until it was done. It took me a while to realize that what I am doing is just fine too! It's okay to flip back and forth in your journal and draw something on the fourth page and doodle on the sixth page and paint on the ninth. Yeah, you won't be able to instagram your journal properly (since it's a mess of incompleteness) but there's something really satisfying about watching your journal growing in every single page. It's like watering an entire garden and not knowing what will bloom first and where.

I've gone off topic, haven't I. 

The second tip discussed is free writing. This is something that I also find myself nodding to, even though I've not carried out this tip at all. It's important to stay in form, to keep writing as a schedule. Just like I was worried about losing my grip on blogging the longer my hiatus went on, the same can be said of writing. The more part of your routine it is, the more likely you'll maintain it.

Write! Write anything, write everything. Write how your day is going, write about a new idea you had, write about something you felt strongly about today, write about something your friend said that struck a chord with you, just write. These little pieces of writing, keep them all in once place because they just might end up filling up the cracks of a bigger project coming your way soon :)

So these were a couple of things that were on my mind. I'm hoping that I can back to the groove of blogging really soon. If you've had any similar experience, whether it's writing your blog posts or a story, what did you do about it? Have a nice day!

4 comments:

  1. You're not alone in this. I woke up feeling bad, saw I lost a follower and since I can't post twice a week anymore I feel like a failure. What's the point if my blog is so bad that people start unfollowing? :(
    I don't have time to do anything creative, but I think I'm going to do the free writing thing in class. My classes don't really add value to my education at the moment :P
    I'm glad you're back from your hiatus though :D I've missed your posts

    x Envy
    Lost in Translation

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    1. Thanks! I'm glad I'm back too :D Don't worry, you'll find a much better follower than them >.> who needs uninterested people anyway?

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  2. I think everyone including myself is having a weird writing block. Personally i haven't posted a good blog since September. My life has been so busy with all the doctor appointments that i had to go to (I have been diagnosed with MS). So i was just like "why not post about my hospital stay/visits?" After i wrote two posts i was just like "nope these blog posts are too depressing to be on my blog", but after i thought about it for awhile, i came to realize while your audience is very important, you as a writer have to decide if that's something you want to talk about. As a reader i would rather read a blog post that is long and has way too many details than a blog post where the writer doesn't like the topic. It shows when a writer has enthusiasm about a topic. All the blog post ideas you mentioned seem really interesting, especially the game reviews. These past two weeks i decided to create a schedule for my posts. I have a little agenda where i write down all the important things that need to be done that day. That seems to help me with my laziness. Lol I don't know if that will help you or not since i have a lot more time(i stay home all day since i'm homeschooled). You also mentioned that you wanted to learn HTML since i was a computer science student for like a month lol, i downloaded this app called Learn HTML which is really fabulous. I think you should try it out.
    Also i seem to miss all your blog posts :( It used to notify me by email but now it doesn't). Maybe you can share your posts on Teenage blogger central or Teens unite? My gmail is stupid and won't let me subscribe to any blogs.
    Okay i'll stop talking now. Welcome back and i can't wait to read your new blog posts :)

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    1. Oh, I'm sorry to hear about that! You should definitely write about your experiences with MS and doctor visits. Not only would be therapeutic for you, but it would also be very interesting content. I personally, would really like to read things that are happening in your life, that you are passionate about that.
      I didn't know you are homeschooled! I'm homeschooled too, but only till third grade. I ended up skipping a grade cause homeschooling made me smarter xD
      I'm definitely going to check that app out! Thank you for sharing it with me! Currently I'm working on this 30 day HTML/CSS course on youtube and so far it's pretty interesting!
      Of course! I'll do my best to share my posts there. Thank you for welcoming me back! It feels good to finally be writing and posting again! Have a nice day Madeline <3

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