29STORIES Check-In #9: NaNoWriMo Week 3

29STORIES Check-In #9: NaNoWriMo Week 3featured


Instead of writing much of anything this week, I had a small existential crisis instead.

I used to get these, like, weekly in college, but it’s been awhile.

I wrote a little something on Monday and then…I don’t know.

29STORIES Check-In #9: NaNoWriMo, Week 3 {the ponytail diaries}

I started wondering why this challenge was so hard for me. Why I wasn’t able to get excited about writing, why ideas were still coming so slowly, why opening up a new blank doc felt like running up Heartbreak Hill every damn day (I imagine at least; I’ve yet to run Boston).

Maybe I’m just wallowing in what Ira Glass calls “the gap”? Maybe I’m at a particularly low point on that journey? It sure seems like everything I’ve been managing to write is pure and utter crap.

Have I just taken on too much this month? Writing so much every day plus handling current client work and trying to grow my business and pitch new clients and streamline my systems and redo my website and everything else I seem to think I should be able to handle?

(I’m so screwed when I have a kid. I honestly don’t know how I’ll function at all, ever again, after that.)

Then I started thinking…why am I pushing myself to do this? Do I just want to write fiction because ever since I was eight, I’ve been telling people I want to be an author and write novels, despite never really actually finishing a single novel, ever? Am I just clinging to this thing I always thought I wanted to do? Am I unwilling to give it up because everyone I’m close to thinks it’s what I’ll do eventually and expects it of me?

And then…if I don’t actually want to be an author, then what? Is what I’m doing now — working as a freelance writer, writing stuff for other people — going to be enough? Should I be doing something else? And if so…what?

Joseph Campbell would call this my “dark night of the soul.” Except not really, because this is hardly a true hero’s journey that I’m on. Just another millennial attempt at self-discovery.

So…I don’t know. Also, I caught some sort of wicked bug last week, so I’ve reluctantly been on cold meds for a few days, and that could be leading to some confused thought processes.

I am not sure what I’m going to do next week. Although I’ve been eagerly looking forward to Thanksgiving all month, I somehow thought I had an extra week in here, so the fact that next week is basically only three days means I’ll be scrambling a bit to make sure I won’t be working over the holiday. (I’ll probably still work a little.) I don’t want to just give up and stop even trying, but I’m also tired of forcing words out when I’d much rather be getting some need sleep.

I’m pretty sure I’ll get through this little down patch and keep writing. But if not…I don’t know. Figuring out what would happen next, or instead, scares me a little. But I guess I’ll do it, if I have to.

NaNoWriMo Stats, Week 3 {the ponytail diaries}