Last year was rough. Just downright rough. You name it, and it probably happened around here. It seems the only thing missing was a natural disaster, and if Lake Erie were capable of producing hurricanes or tsunamis, I'm not so sure we would have been spared.
But.... That's past history! It's a brand new year, and with that comes brand new opportunities. Three-hundred-and-sixty-five new days to wake up, get dressed, and conquer the world. Right?
Well, okay. Maybe we won't feel like conquering the world every day. Realistically speaking, there will be days we feel more like flinging the alarm clock across the room, burrowing under the covers, and going back to sleep for the next 24 hours. It's inevitable. No one promised life would be perfect, but fortunately, those days are the exception rather than the rule for most of us. However, when they hit, they can be a real downer. It's those times you just have to put on your big girl (or big boy) pants and suck it up. Move forward. Keep going with the knowledge that the situation is only temporary. Work it out the best you can, and be proud of your efforts.
The same holds true for our writing. In the past year, despite the personal challenges I faced, there were days I sat down and cranked out great work. I would reread my previous days' musings and feel a sense of accomplishment. Other times, I would hate it all--'highlight' and 'delete' became my best friends. There were even times I would go days--even weeks--without writing a single word. It didn't matter if I had 500,000 thoughts all swirling around in my head dying to be a part of my manuscript. If I wasn't feeling it, they stayed where they were, never to see the light of day.
But, I kept going.
I didn't let those 'off' days get to me, and you shouldn't, either. I've heard it's best to try to write something every day in order to keep the creative juices flowing, and I agree with that. However, if there are days when the muse decides to go on vacation, don't sweat it. I always say you can't force creativity. It's either there, or it's not. If it is, then by all means, grab it by the horns and don't let go. Write until your fingers ache! If it's not, step away from the computer and allow yourself to relax and regroup. Take a long walk, a candlelight bath, catch a movie with a friend. Have dinner with your significant other, play a game with your kids. Do something that will take your focus off the writing for a little while. Chances are, when you return to it, the words will come more easily.
Just keep in mind that today is only one day, and you still have 364 more opportunities to shine. And you undoubtedly will!
Until next time, Happy Writing!