Valerie Rutherford (fireflys_locket) wrote,
Valerie Rutherford

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Author Struggles

I've been struggling lately. And not for the reasons you might expect. I'm totally fine being home all the time. In fact, I prefer it. The sadness and stress of the world is certainly a factor, but that's true even during "normal" times. I've been dealing with a bad depression and burn out from dedicating myself to editing for more than a year.

I put year of hard work into the re-edit of Book One and made my first book the best it can be. Then I struggled against the formatting and uploading process. Made a big effort with posting content around the release. And launched right back into the final edits for Book Two. And I'm exhausted.

One of the struggles of being an author is potentially losing the passion for your work by pushing yourself too hard. A lot of authors will tell you that you should treat writing as a job, and there's some truth in that. Writing and revising and editing are work. And so are marketing and promoting your writing. You have to be willing to put effort into your books if you want them to succeed. But not, I feel, to the point of endangering your mental health or the love of writing.

To me, writing is not a job. It's not a hobby, either. It's the passion that chose me. It's the thing that gave me an escape as a child and consolation as a teenager. It's the medium through which my natural inclination for storytelling flows. But sometimes I lose that in obsession over how my book sales are going, or how long editing is taking, or what people will think about Book Two.

I chose balance as my word for 2020, and I haven't done a great job with that. I want to be the best writer and author I can be, but I also want room to breathe and rest. I'm never going to be the biggest go-getter in the author community. I'm never going to write every day or have a perfectly curated Instagram feed. But I want to be able to put my heart and soul into both my writing passion and my author "job", which really just means giving my stories their best chance. I have some new ideas about how to do that, but like everything with me, it will take time and the ability to do it my own way to work.
Tags: anxiety, books, magic inc, writing

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