I have a confession to make. I haven’t written anything new in six months.
My hiatus started after writing 12,000 words of a new novel, and realizing that it wasn’t the story I wanted to tell. This led me to plotting the story I did want to tell, and realizing that I didn’t have the time or brain power to write it – even a first draft.
So, I put my computer down for a while and focused on other things; some light editing of novels I have been querying and a few blog posts. I read a whole lot, mostly YA that I consider professional research.
I found You Tube.
Side note: If you read “I found You Tube” and gasped, then you too have fallen down the very wide, very deep rabbit hole of online content.
I watched dozens of You Tube web series with relatable content to what I write. This led me to podcasts with fresh perspectives of what “kids these days” are into. I have to admit I spent quite a bit of time in the online content pit of doom. I learned quite a bit too! But, I finally emerged, mostly to focus on directing a musical for my middle school. I am an art teacher, but I have a bachelors and masters degree in theatre, and decided to put them to good use.
Now I find myself on the other side of my hiatus. Brain cells restored, ready for the new year, I am faced with a looming question. What Do I Work On Next?
It’s like a multiple choice question that you are faced with in a nightmare, one with no correct answer, although you know there is a right answer and if you don’t pick the right one you’ll fail the test, and you may or may not be wearing pants.
Question 1: What will you work on next? (circle your answer)
a) Start fresh, write something completely new
b) Edit, edit, edit. Pick up something you already have and shine it up
c) Write the one that scares you – go on, you’ve already plotted it out
d) Try your hand at some flash fiction
e) Maybe revisit audiobooks
f) Start your own podcast – hey why not, all the cool kids are doing it
g) Write a web series, gosh golly, how hard could it be? (palm to the forehead)
h) Workshop that musical you wrote a decade back and figure out how to use the midi on your electric piano
i) Just focus on querying, don’t worry about new content at all
j) Try your hand at picture books
k) Join the circus (just checking to see if you were paying attention)
l) Take a writing class
Give writing up altogether and take up macramé
n) Breathe. Recharge and let inspiration happen on its own time. When you know, you'll know
Whatever it is that I end up working on, I know it will be the right thing. Happy Writing in the new year, and may inspiration guide all of you Writers’ Rumpus readers out there.
Feel free to share your multiple choice O – Z list below and add to the rumpus!