Getting through 5 months of work is never easy. Writers create, perfect, polish, so obsessively (if they want success) that we can forget to take care of ourselves. Everyone hits this point I think. Not just writers, but all artists, all people really.
Wrapping up projects can be a real bitch! Forcing yourself to keep going until you get to the end is hard enough, but having to do it again and again and again…well…you get the point.
This is why writing breaks are necessary. Sure it goes against the militant “You MUST write everyday!” stance, but that is a stance that I only partly agree with. If you write everyday, you’re likely to get burnt out. But if you don’t you’re skills may suffer. It’s all part of the paradox of writing & publishing. Being an author adds in the elements of editing, blurbs, promoting, events; it get’s to be a real circus of insanity.
To balance this shit out, I make sure to write as often as I can. I generally write everyday, but twice a year I take a month off to recharge and become a functioning human again. June and December are always the busiest months of the year for me. Just getting to today felt like a crazy whirlwind.
It’s a different kind of busy though. There are usually births or weddings to celebrate, dance recitals and camping trips for the kiddos, birthday parties and all sorts of family fun. It’s important to nurture those relationships and make sure that you don’t get so wrapped up in writing and finding inspiration that you leave your loved ones behind.
I skipped a much needed hiatus last December and it hit me hard. I had to take one in February or I may have completely lost my mind. This year I will stay on track. No writing! All my edits are done for a while, my submissions are out, and I have a new book to promote.
Time to kick back and go drink a fucking mojito at the damn pool.
Well maybe a Shirley Temple… I’ve learned I also need to take drinking breaks to keep from spiraling into alcoholism. Definitely don’t want to turn into the cranky old drunk writer stereotype. haha
And no drinking usually fits best with no writing. Time to take off the cloak of over-thinking and just be a part of everything. I can work on music and paint and adventure outside without writer’s guilt because this is my month to let things sit.
How about you guys? Any fellow authors and writers out there take breaks like this?