One of the annoying things about any writing project that is longer than a short story is the inevitable drop-off of enthusiasm that can happen after you’ve been writing it for a while.
This is when the story goes from being something new and exciting to being something that you’re a little too familiar with. Something mundane which you really have to push yourself to write more of (when you aren’t procrastinating from writing it, of course). Basically, it is when writing your novella or novel or whatever goes from being fun to being a chore.
It’s when you read stories by other people and think “I wish I was writing that instead of this boring old thing”. If you’re writing something “low-brow”, then it’s when you think “This is silly! I should write something with some intellectual depth“. Then, when you try to write something with the intellectual depth that you envied, you secretly wish that you were writing something a bit more fun.
And, for whatever reason, the excitement and enthusiasm goes out of your story. You think about abandoning it, before begrudgingly finishing the next chapter and telling yourself that you’ve come this far and that it would be pointless to abandon it, regardless of how fresh and exciting the idea of just throwing it aside and writing something else seems.
So, how do you deal with this?
Whilst there are lots of different techniques (and, of course, different things work for different people), I thought that I’d talk briefly about one that helped me to finish a chapter of a novella-length project that I was trying to write at the time of writing this article.
In short, just remember the core idea of your story. The point that you were trying to make when you started writing it. The thing that inspired you in the first place. The reason you started telling the story. The thing that made you feel enthusiastic in the first place.
So, try to sum up the core idea of your story in a couple of sentences. Think about things like the point that your story is trying to make, how you want your audience to feel whilst reading it etc…
In short, remember why you started writing the story in the first place. When you’re in the middle of a story, it can be easy just to see it as an ordinary, never-ending thing that is familiar and boring compared to the novels that have inspired you. But, if you’ve come this far with your story, then there’s usually a good reason for it. And it can be easy to forget this reason.
So, remind yourself of why you started writing your story and you might start to feel more enthusiastic about it again.
Sorry for the short article, but I hope that it was useful 🙂