Personal Tip

Keep going.

This week, I’ve felt unmotivated to work many of my creative projects. Every time I sit down to work on my book, I think, “Where do I even start today?” I love the project and the discoveries I’ve made over the past two-and-a-half years, but I feel like I’ve found myself lost in the thick of dense woods, surrounded by mountains of material but having no idea which direction to step.

I want to write screenplays for movies and TV and be in them. I want to perform on The Second City stage. I want to vacation and see the world.

It’s weird to have the feeling of personally assigned homework every day. I write for my book, Second City’s writing program, now the 2017 Second City Staff Show, and will soon be memorizing lines for a Huggable Riot archival show at The Annoyance Theater. I improvise when I can with my improv team, Breakfast of Champions, which I love. My work schedule added into all of this accounts for most of my waking hours. As someone who is a proud multi-tasker, I can list all of these things I actively do yet still feel like I’m not doing enough.

And that sucks.

At this moment in time, I’m frustrated over not being completed with a first draft of my novel. It’s that feeling of working on one thing for such a long time and still feeling like you’re on the first step. I’m worried that all my revisions and explorations have weakened the story, though many of them should deepen the story. I’m living in a contradictory mindset for moving forward with it. I want to share it with others, have them go on the journey, and share with my their reactions. I can’t do that if I continue to circle the drain.

Maybe I need a break from my novel. However, that would mean halting any potential for progression toward completion. My gut tells me to trudge forward, even on days when my mind digs in its heels when I sit down to my journal. Otherwise, I feel like I’m giving up on my project that I promised myself I’d see through to the end.

If any of you have advice for diving back into a long-term personal project, please reach out. I would appreciate any advice or tips at this time.

Thank you for reading this stream-of-consciousness post. I thought I would approach this week’s post from an angle of honesty in the moment.


2 thoughts on “Personal Tip

  1. Hi Nick, this summer I had to take an enforced three month break from my novel due to a shoulder injury. I hated not being able to write, felt like I was abandoning my project, one that I loved and had devoted so much time and energy to. I felt like if I really loved it I would find a way to work on it even though I had so much pain. But in the end, stepping away gave me much needed clarity and when I went back to it I saw things differently and was able to dive in and complete the 2nd draft two months later. Though I wouldn’t suggest three whole months, it might be a good idea to take one away from work on the novel. It will make a huge difference, I promise!

    Liked by 1 person

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