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April 23rd, 2017

Flowers and Spring and Writing

I've been trying so hard to take positivity from the fresh air and new life - the green leaves and flowers - but warm weather brings on my seasonal depression far more than winter. I think it's because it's so beautiful outside that I feel such a disconnect from everything around me. Just like holidays, I feel the pressure to be happy. And because of that, I actually feel worse. But I am trying.

Writing has also been tough lately. I'm more anxious about how my current WIPs will be received than I was about my first book's release in 2015. Self-doubt is killing my creativity on a regular basis over the last year, and I don't know what to do. I've certainly had writing anxiety before, but it has never happened with such intensity and frequency. It never really got in the way of my work. Until now.

In a way, I think all the interacting I'm trying to do with other writers on Twitter has been draining me and making me doubt myself more. I appreciate the idea of community, but as with a lot of social things - or maybe all social things - I often feel more alone when I try to connect, and fail. My process is so different from most of the other writers. And that's totally fine. But I don't know. Finding a community just never really works for me. I always feel on the outside looking in.

I've learned a lot from listening to other writers talk about issues in writing and publishing. And for that, I'm grateful. But constantly worrying about whether those people would approve of my stories has been making me so sick that I cannot work. And it's not their fault. That's just where my anxiety takes me. The other writers have been kind and supportive. But it's all very casual, and that's not the connection I'm craving. And any socializing is incredibly draining to me, so it has to be worth it.

What's the right amount of casual socializing for me? I don't know. Some of the discussions have been really enjoyable and motivating. But writing, to me, is about feeling immersed in story and characters. I want to discuss story... not writing, if that makes sense. I want to connect with another writer one-on-one. But it has to be the right match. And I don't know where to find that any more than any other deep connection with another human being.

My birthday is coming up in about a month. This tends to trigger emotional crashes. So, maybe I should pull away for a while. Get immersed back into story instead of all the technical examinations of writing. That's what I want to do. But I don't want to lose the little bit of connection I have found, since it's so rare.