Writing peaks and lulls

I do go through writing lulls. I do have points where I can’t write certain things – or just can’t write. But then I’ll also have hours or days or weeks where I can write, and the story just flows.

I hoped that last night would be a good writing night…Saturday night was writing a pre-written story. Sunday night was writing a new story, but still in the same world, and was very creative.  Monday night was paperwork (don’t ask) and editing Sunday’s story. And yesterday (Tuesday) I sat down and thought, “I’ve got a few hours! Let’s write!”

And it wouldn’t come.

I spent half an hour looking through my work – two pieces, one Greensky and the other my new Dresden piece – and admitted defeat. I wasn’t in the mood; my brain’s all over the place and just needed a night off. And so I put a piece of chill-out music on – Phamie Gow for anyone interested – and went on Tumblr to get ideas.

I know there’s a lot of advice out there for ‘how to write’ and that you should do a certain amount each day. If that works for you, sure; it doesn’t work for me. I can’t just sit down and write something and then edit it the next day if it’s awful; I depend on the ideas being there at the same time as my desire to write. I need to be in the right frame of mind to filter the characters and worlds out of my head.

I think some people see ‘not writing’ as an admission of failure. But if you haven’t written x hundred words today, does that make you less of a writer? As long as the story gets written, as long as it is somehow coming out…I don’t know. I tend to ignore most writing advice as it never fitted me, and my ultimate defence against the ‘well you’re not a proper writer’ is that it works for me. My stories do come out, eventually – but I have to have all parts of my brain working together.

I want to try to get more of my latest Green Sky finished this month (oh crap, how did we get to October?!) so that I can start work on Heights & Horizons from new in November for NaNoWriMo. I think I just need my brain to settle a little (between paperwork, the house, work, friends…it’s all over the place) and get back into the world. But I’ll keep you all updated over the month, and hopefully there will be some snippets coming your way!

Author: kate

Kate Coe is an editor, book reviewer and writer of fiction & fantasy. She writes the sparkpunk GreenSky series and blogs at writingandcoe.co.uk. When she's not working, she fills her spare time in between writing with web design, gaming, geeky cross-stitch and DIY (which may or may not involve destroying things). She also reads far fewer books that she would like to, but possibly more than she really has time for.