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Lost in the Woods

Like any endeavor that you stick with for a long time, you inspiration waxes and wanes. There are days, weeks, even months when you are super productive and feel like you can conquer the word.

Then there are days when you just lose your mojo. Your creativity and moxie and drive are nowhere to be found, and you wander around the woods, wondering where your path went.

I’m doing some wandering right now, myself.

I have one manuscript done, that I was happy with and sent to an editor. The feedback that was returned was helpful and made me think about the story in some new ways. But something was nagging at me after my rewrite so I sent it to some peers for a review. Waiting to hear from two of them, but one came back—and some of her observations point me back to the original story, before the editor got it.

Now, I’m not saying the editor was wrong and this reviewer is right, or vice versa. Both are only a single opinion. It is on me to weigh them both and decide what I want to do with the story. But I confess, the conflicting advice has left me a little stuck. I will be curious what the other peer reviews come back with. I have a short story in a competition and it is doing well (got to second round). I know it has a ton of potential to be turned into a longer tale or screenplay, but I struggle with which is the right one.

The follow-up to my novel continues to languish, as I don’t know quite what to do with it. There is a story there, but I’m having a bitch of a time digging it out. Follow-up stories have always been my bugaboo. I put way too much pressure on myself about them.

And the novel that’s coming out—that was supposed to be out last summer and got derailed by the stupid pandemic—is still in limbo also. It was going to be February or early March 2021. Now it is late March, early April. I’m grateful we’re talking about months now because at least that is a window… but to have to keep telling the awesome people who put in advance orders that they’ll have to wait just a little longer (they’ve been waiting literally 3+ YEARS now) breaks my heart.

This whole post is a bit self-indulgent and whiny. I acknowledge that, I see it. But the simple fact that I sat down to write this gives me hope that my path in the woods is getting clearer again, that I’ll be back on track soon.

So for those who are lost in the woods with me, I’m glad we can keep each other company. And if your mojo happens to see my mojo running with abandon through some open field, tell it to get its butt back home. I miss it.

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