Stories Take Form – How I Realized Novel Writing Isn’t for Me

Happy Hump Day to everyone! We made it through half of the week so far, so not much longer until the weekend. (Well, your weekend depending on your work schedules.) After posting about my writings in the past, I decided to follow up with how I discovered genres and styles I write most often today. Not only that, but I also want to share how novel writing does not seem to be in my cards (at least for the near future).

Do you have any writing forms that you just can’t get done yourself? Share in the comments below; some of us may even be able to give tips!

Do not get me wrong; I wish I had enough focus and will strength to write my own novel. From a young age, I dreamed of being the next J.K. Rowling and creating some amazing book(s). However, at least for now, I map out potential novels only to let them be forgotten in my OneDrive folders. I hate that I never seem to follow through with them, but I can find at least an explanation as to why I may do this to myself about novels in particular.

The prominent reason that comes to mind has to do with my mental state ever since dealing with some mental health issues that I have. (No worries; I’m not a loony bin…at least most of the time.) When you grow up with major depression and anxiety, the feelings they bring out of you are weird and contradictory, yet they still mesh together.

The cycle is pretty much this:

Plan novel –> Feel good about the idea –> A lot of it unknown (how long it should be mostly, formatting, POV, etc.) –> Anxiety ensues and I procrastinate –> Depression gets worse –> Just get busy in general –> Never touch it again

What ends up happening is the undertaking seems so huge that, when I doubt I can do it, I completely shut down and just don’t do it at all. It is a horrible mentality to have, but it is also a difficult one to break in all areas of your life. So I would rather it happen writing a novel than, say, not going to work or not paying my bills because that seems too stressful.

My second reason ties in with that first one as far as uncertainty goes; I never know how I want to go about beginning the novel when I sit down and try to write it. Even when I map out the plot, characters, settings, and a lot more, I get stuck on the actual implementation of those ideas. Add that on to the size of the project, and that leads me to shut down all over again. Since I can recognize these habits in myself, though, I found a happy medium to let my creativity shine.

I mentioned numerous times that I primarily write poetry. However, my happy medium for storytelling ended up being playwriting. I get to tell a story that I mapped out well in a different format that feels a lot more broken down. (When I freeze up seeing how big a project is, that breakdown in format is a game changer.) I also enjoy the unique hats you have to wear when writing a script: writer, stage director, producer, etc. You do not have to spend as much time painting a setting since you make sure to do that in the first section of each act and scene. That gives you a lot more time to focus on character development and dialogue, the parts of writing that always intrigued me most.

Novel writing will never not happen. It just will not happen until I get a little more confidence and experience under my belt, which is completely acceptable. I am just happy that I found another way to write that keeps me consistent instead of giving up.

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Do you have any experiences similar to this about any form of writing or art in general? Let’s chat!

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