essbeejay: my squishy! (bubbles: my squishy!)
So now I'm lying wide awake in bed agonizing over things that aren't worth agonizing over, playing fiddle to what feels like massive insecurities I've been having lately in regards to many things, but primarily writing and TEF. This is not helped by all the caffeine that's still having a dance party in my system.

Bear with me for a post.

I'm still struggling with the writing thing. A lot. I'm constantly shirking my morning writing duties. I allow myself to get sidetracked by the entirety of the interwebs all too often. And unfortunately, this is all happening while I steadily lose steam for TEF. I can't get my groove back. I know I just have to sit down every morning and do it - that's how I got a groove at all in the first place, and kept it going for 11 straight chapters over the course of a year - but I can't do it.

This is very, very frustrating. And there's no need to reassure me - I know all the platitudes, I've sung all those songs to other writers, to myself. I know this will pass. I know I just need to keep working at it. But it is nearly 3 in the morning, God damn it, and I'm a complete basket case because my body's exhausted but Caffeine is still partying like it's No Cover Fees Saturday Night in the Writers' Anxiety District. I'm not into all this! But it's in my head, and maybe if I get it out it'll stop and I can finally call it a night.

Words are hard. Words are really, really hard. The muse isn't singing. The muse is barely dropping by as it is. And the thing that kills me - the thing that really fucking kills me right now - is the muse isn't going to drop by unless I keep dragging my ass out of bed at 6:30a to sit down and get some fucking writing done. Which definitely isn't going to happen tonight; at best I'll be getting three hours of "sleep" that'll mostly be made up of fruitless tossing and turning when I finally bring myself to shut this glowing idiot box down. Fucking great. Fucking fantastic. Fucking stupid of me to down all that fucking tea (delicious though it was). Fuckity fuck fuck fuuuuuuuuuuck!

I really don't like being this whiny, but it's been a long time since I've been up this late freaking out about stuff and every single fucking nerve I have is being yanked right now. FUCK.

I've got nothing these days. And my lack of writing practice isn't just affecting TEF. Shit, I can barely even summon the words to reply to comments! I haven't replied to comments regularly in ages; I go through spurts of checking up on everyone and being diligent about that reply button but those never last long nowadays. And my critical thinking! Analyses and arguments! I'm so fucking incomprehensible; nothing I say comes out sounding right. And I know, I admit, I hold myself to an impossibly high standard (not just in writing, but in all aspects of my life, which is why I can assert that with such certainty (UGH GOD WHAT A MISERABLE FUCKING SENTENCE)), but I used to be able to say things that would still make sense to me later and I used to make objective, reasonable arguments. WHAT THE FUCK IS WRONG WITH ME.

Ugh, whinging. Whinge, whinge, whinge. Fuck it, I'm exhausted. I am therefore entitled to some seriously annoying whinging.

While I'm airing out my grievances, something that for some reason is really bumming me out tonight is the "TEF!Blossom = Mary Sue" thing. I'm not sure I really want to go into detail about it - more than anything, I don't want to discourage anyone from having opinions about TEF that contradict my own; I don't think that's how discussion or critical thinking works, but it's been weighing so heavy on me that I can't help but try and slough off some of that frustration. While there's a lot of things I'm packing into TEF, I don't want to tell anyone how it should be read, because... the thing is. Like, as much as a text belongs to the person creates it, there comes a point where the baby gets pushed out of the nest and it just doesn't belong to you anymore. You spend all this time with it, slaving away, fussing, making it right, and then it goes out into the world and then it isn't just yours. It takes on this different life, this different meaning. To a great extent I really do believe in Death of the Author, especially because I have glaring blind spots as a human being and can hardly be counted on to give an accurate summation of my own self; rather, I discover more about my person when other people offer their insights as well. (And yes, sometimes those insights are useless... but wait, doesn't that also say something rather scathing about me?) By natural extension, that applies to what the self creates as well - I am no expert on my self, therefore I am no expert when it comes to the texts I create. A reader who possesses an opinion I do not agree with is not wrong. The text takes on a life of its own - several lives, really, colored by the personalities and personal experiences of each individual person. It's like Joss Whedon said: "All worthy work is open to interpretations the author did not intend. Art isn't your pet -- it's your kid. It grows up and talks back to you." I mean, it's all stuff I know. I know this. But the comparisons that get drawn still bum me out sometimes.

This went to a weird heady place. I am feeling better, though. I might even be able to sleep now.
essbeejay: saving the world. (Default)
Authors need each other in this really weird way.

We need the authors we most admire to give us something to aspire to—some reason to keep trying and growing no matter how successful we are in our own careers. We need authors whose work we don’t like to remind us how fickle and subjective the industry is and how we’re writing for a diverse and varied audience of people with their own tastes, experiences, and needs.

We need the authors who seemingly made it without trying to remind us that some of it comes down to luck, and we need the workhorses to remind us that most of it comes down to brutal amounts of hard work.

But mostly we need author friends. We need people who speak our language and understand the quirks, the hysteria, and the interminable waiting that comes with the creation of a book. We need people to be our fans when no one else is allowed to see what we’ve spent so much time creating. We need them to rally around the potential of a crappy idea and to pick apart even the most beautifully rendered paragraph so that we can make it better and better. Always better.

Mostly, though, we need our author friends to believe in being successful. We need them to keep moving forward in the face of everyone and everything telling them to stop. We need their lights to shine so bright, it almost doesn’t seem dark out there. Because, sometimes, that’s the only way we can see the sharp rocks at our feet.


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