Being creatively exhausted

Having a writing goal can destroy a writer.

Every writer has his or her own ideals of where he or she wants to be in the writing world. Some are fine just self publishing. Some never write for a paycheck. Others hope their novels spread hope or make it to the best seller’s list.

But having that writing goal means writing a lot. Some have a 3,000+ word count a day that they have to meet. After a while though, writers can become creatively exhausted.

They can’t write as much anymore. If they do, it’s never as good. Some will stare at the screen for hours, not sure where the story’s going anymore. It’s a shove to get words out rather than letting them flow.

Being creatively exhausted sucks. And honestly, I’m not 100% sure how to stop it. Even taking a break from writing doesn’t help all the time. Writers can still come back empty handed afterwards. But pushing through it never seems great either because the words don’t seem right anymore. It’s words written down just to be rewrote again.

For me, personally, I try to write through it. It may not be good, but at least something’s down.

What about you? What do you do when you’re creatively exhausted? Leave a comment below!

6 thoughts on “Being creatively exhausted

  1. Hello Robin,

    Your blog post today brings up a great point, the ebb and flow of creativity. After large amounts of output, I do find that I become creatively exhausted. For me, I tend to take a small break and strike out into the world. I let my senses attack the life around me and refuel the tanks. I do think there is value to press through it at times, so I commend you for that. The hard part is in determining when to apply that pressure. With experience, we writers find our spots. Thank you for bringing up such a interesting topic, it provokes me to think about how I handle those challenges when they arise. One of my favorite parts of being a parent, is that I get to watch kids movies over and over and over 🙂 I find that movies are now designed for both kids and adults, and there are many gems that I take away. One of the tags from the movie “Meet the Robinsons” is KEEP MOVING FORWARD. I’ve liked it since I heard it several years ago, and have adopted it as a mantra of sorts. No matter what you do…KEEP MOVING FORWARD.

    Great post!

    Best,
    Chris

    Like

    1. Thanks for your comment! I agree that we, writers, need to find our own spots with how we handle being creatively exhausted. — I haven’t seen Meet the Robinsons since it came out! Though I did bring that movie up the other day cause I remembered the scene with the T-Rex trying to reach into the corner. — I agree with those kids movies having a lesson for kids and adults too. Putting lessons and gems into the movie for everyone to learn from or remember is one of those ways they keep everyone entertained.

      Liked by 1 person

    1. I love people watching at my job. It’s a great way to get inspiration! — I don’t get to visit bookstores or libraries often though. I might try to visit them soon and see if I get some inspiration.

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  2. I too write through those times when I feel like there’s not anything there to write about or when the words just don’t want to come. I write anyway and then, magically, a new story, a new scene, or a new chapter materializes from my pen.

    This year I decided to try something new. I set an artificial deadline for myself. I’m writing one dialogue-only short story every week this year. I’ve never done anything like this before, not even NaNoWriMo. And it’s fantastic. Three dialogues have been published and three are coming out in other publications soon.

    This is going so well that I’m also going to start setting working hours like I used to have. I’ve seen my writing hours dwindle from 6 to 4 to 2 hours of daily, active writing. While it seems counterintuitive to do this since I’ve picked up a second job, I feel like it’s more important than ever to make sure I’m prioritize my writing. In fact, having an abundance of time to write made me feel like I could always write later. The fact is, with or without free time, we writers who want to write seriously need to prioritize. I didn’t realize until I lost my free time just how badly I needed to prioritize my creative time.

    Prioritizing may take the form of artificial deadlines, writing challenges like my dialogue writing, word counts, or daily hours at the desk. So-called burnout is often the consequence of not being consistent in your writing (so that it feels emotionally costly and exhausting when you try to write) or a consequence of forming bad habits which make it hard to focus on writing. So unplug the internet, turn off the cellphone, and just write if that’s really what you want to do with your time and life.

    For me, it’s priority number one. Even when I don’t feel like writing, I write. And I’m a better writer for it.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Congrats on your dialogues! That’s awesome! & yeah, I agree. I’m still a college student and during the summer, I worked 35+ hours at my job. Prioritizing my writing got hard, but I’ve been working on making more of a schedule for that too.

      Liked by 1 person

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