Writing is hard.
I say that title only half tongue-in-cheek, because writing has always been something that has been very easy for me. It just happens, like I’m some sort of medium for an other-worldly author. Poetry, especially, can happen without me even thinking about it. But then again, it has always been things I wanted to write, inspired, without need for rules or guidelines, just for my own purposes.
I find lately, as I attempt to get myself “out there” into the world of writing, to get things published, it is getting harder. Instead of trying to release the sculpture from the stone, I am trying to mould the stone like it should be putty. Needless to say, it’s not working so well.
As an example, I tried to write a story for the upcoming Second Contact anthology by Bundoran Press. My attempt at that was so beyond bad it was embarrassing. Truth be told, I have never once thought about what a second contact by aliens would look like, and nor did I really care when I made myself do so in order to write. I’ve written fanfics I’ve cared about more than that story, (and no you can’t read them.)
So I stopped. It just wasn’t happening.
Right now I’m working on a piece for Future Fire, and while it’s going significantly better than my second contact story, it’s still a struggle. I’ve moved from third person, vaguely omniscient, to first person, clearly not. First person is much more my speed, though to be fair, I do have a fair amount of third person writing. But it has to happen naturally, without me really noticing until the story is over. Otherwise it feels like I’m trying too hard to make it third person and everything comes out sounding like “The cat sat on the mat”.
Even the novel I was working on is floundering because while the idea intrigues me still, the first draft is so crap that it’s even beyond the traditional “shitty first draft”.
I do have another idea that has been percolating in my head and I may move on to that.
I’m not saying I’m giving up. And maybe the fact that I can’t come up with anything decent when I’m forced to means I don’t have any real talent, but I don’t really think so. I think it just means I come at my writing from a different angle, and that’s okay.