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bear by san

March 2017



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can't sleep books will eat me

oh my darling oh my darling benzedrine

Hey there internauts. Welcome back to the re-emerging chronicle of my rebooted life. Tomorrow morning, I get up and go to see a sports medicine dude about my Achilles tendon, which has been seriously cramping my style since June and, after the manner of tendons, just refuses to heal. (My heel won't heal! O Noes!) This has, needless to say, been having an extremely detrimental effect on my running and dancing and basically everything cardiovascular I enjoy doing.

The climbing was going pretty well, and the weight-lifting, before the pneumonia thing started. But curiously, it's hard to squat 200 when you're coughing up alien civilizations and your toes, so when I come back to it, I expect to be significantly deloaded. *dogsigh*

But I didn't come here to talk about sports injuries. I came here to talk about the problem of my writer brain. Which is, more or less, I've realized that writing stopped being fun at all immediately after I attended a pro-level workshop in 2007 (there was so much else going on in my life at the time that I didn't actually connect the two things until later) and turned into an exercise in willpower, grim determination, and consciously applied craft and skill and technique.

I got a lot better from thinking about it so much. But I also got a bit like the centipede that gets around just fine until somebody asks him how he rums.

So here I am with 62 pairs of red Converse All-Stars and the laces are a hopeless knot.

I was getting through basically by gutting it out for quite a while: I'm a very stubborn girl, and I can do an amazing amount on willpower and discipline. The thing is, well, somewhere in the middle of that second draft of An Apprentice to Elves, well. Something just kind of snapped. Went sproing. And the gears have been grinding louder and louder ever since.

Add that to a moderate case of overwork and burnout, and....

So I have to figure out how to relax and trust myself again, I guess. To actually engage with the stories on a level of feeling excited by them and enjoying them, instead of wading through oceans of self-loathing to get there. As regular readers of this journal will recall, all of this is of course gorgeously complicated by a really exciting history of complex PTSD, some of which has gotten kicked to the fore again recently by some triggery happenings...

Basically, I'm in the ridiculous position of having the job I always wanted, a job I love and am good at... and not being able to do it because I'm too busy second-guessing myself.

Which is why the deadline stuff is getting pushed back a bit, so I can have some breathing space and try to get rid of some of this pile of "should" and turn it into "want to" without the hyper-critical selfconsciousness and feelings of being overwhelmed and scraped thin.

But it's February 1st, which is when I told myself I'd get back on the horse, and I've printed out some short fiction I'm poking at, and I'm going to see what I can start doing with it in as relaxed a fashion as possible.

Wheeeeeee. :)


So here I am with 62 pairs of red Converse All-Stars and the laces are a hopeless knot.

I like to think of it as every pair of feet is wearing different shoes, heels, boots... bare podded...
Seriously. And they're all different sizes too.
Sending all the fan girl love and support for dealing with your brain weasels. They suck, and they're tricky little bastards and they lie All The Time. At least mine do. May you find some peace from yours.

Also, yay for self-care and support.

God: I have made mankind!
Angels: You fucked up a perfectly good monkey, is what you did. Look at it. It's got anxiety.
-some wiseass on Twitter.

Brains, man.
*big fat giant hugs*

Hugs. Give yourself permission and breathing room. I hope it gets fun again soon.

Burnout and work turning into a grim trudge is an ever-present threat, I think, in any creative field.

(Your pain is shared.)
I'm pretty sure I can learn to do this again. Maybe hypnotherapy. I hear it worked for Cory.
For me, the cause of the grim trudge is clear: too many goddam sequels. (I haven't started anything new, ab initio, since 2007, with the exception of the Gothic Thing, which Ace turned their nose up at on partial-and-outline, dammit.)

But also, the treadmill of deadlines sucks mud through a straw.

I have un-burned-out from time to time so it should be possible, but jeez ...
I'm no writer, so I don't have anything useful to say in that direction, but good luck getting through the problems!

I always enjoy reading your posts, be they life in general or writing related.

Lotsa luck!
All I can say is that I loved Karen Memory and it showed no sign at all that it had been written with gritted teeth solely by the application of willpower and discipline.

Anyway, I hope that a more relaxed approach to the writing helps. Creativity is such a tricky thing to manage.
My centipede would wave at yours but doesn't want all the sneakers to come off at once and bombard you.

I am very glad you are looking after yourself.

I just... I can't even tell which ones are left sneakers and which ones are right. And this one is a sandal. And what do I do with this stiletto heel?
And what do I do with this stiletto heel?

Stab the brainweasels with it?
Aren't spare stilettos supposed to be for stabbing people with? Or bashing holes in things, at least.

Best of luck with the decompressing & relocating of joy.
You've certainly written some awesomely good things while not having any fun doing it. (see also: Shadow Unit, Steles of the Sky, Karen Memory, etc.) If you ever get to the point of being a fully operational Death Star writer, look out Universe!

Meanwhile, good on you for self-care. Also, *hugs*.
Can you try writing something just for yourself? "This is not for publication/Hugo voters?high expectations, this is just letting it rip."
I took a film class in college, and the professor's comment on my final film was that it lacked the wild spontaneity of my earlier work. That's what I'm after. I want my wild spontaneity back.