Something different.

You write, let’s say, crime fiction and you enjoy writing it. You’ve developed a technique and a style and you have finally found your voice. Others have read your work, whether as a manuscript or in book form or as an eBook, and they like what you do. They’re even waiting for the next work.

Then you realize you hate what you’re doing because it’s no different from brushing your teeth, something you’ve done countless times that the only thing to make sure of is wiping your mouth and not getting any dried toothpaste on your beard. It occurs to you that you could become as drab and droll a writer as you were when you were starting out.

So, what do you do? Something different.

Too often, we get caught up in the ease of the familiar because (let’s face it) writing is difficult. It requires more than just creativity. It requires patience and complex analysis and a quietude that is usually not available in the modern world of employers and homeowners and spouses. Once you’ve found your center, your “happy place”, it makes no sense to change. Right?

That’s just the time when you’ve come to the crossroads of doing what is easy and taking a chance for the sake of your writing, your art, your very creativity. Writer’s Block is nothing compared to the feeling that you’re writing the same story over and over and over again. Different city, different character names, maybe a different crime.

Without having to go back to school, literally, it’s easy to school yourself. You certainly know that you like more than one genre. You’ve even talked about it, perhaps years ago or just recently. The thing that holds you back is “I don’t know how to write X genre” and you figure it’s just too much of a hassle to figure it out. This is the perfect time to try so that you can stretch your capabilities. It’s still everything you have learned thus far about writing just filtered through a different stylistic tendency.

It is important to remember that very few people established their desires by saying “I want to be a Romance writer” or “I want to be a Horror writer” but rather, after encountering a piece of fiction that took us someplace we had never been before, we said with the utmost certainty “I want to be a Writer.”

So, you can continue on your path to almost certain boredom, the well of ideas dried up, and your creative spirit too weakened to continue on. Or, you can do something different.


1 Comment

  1. Scott Moon said,

    February 18, 2014 at 10:34 pm

    Reblogged this on Moon Says What? and commented:
    Great advice from a talented writer.


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