IWSG: Time-Sinks & Other Black Holes

Insecure Writer’s Support Group

My main fear in writing is that I may put a good deal of effort, and time, into this “hobby” only to discover, somewhat belatedly, that no one wants to read what I have written – and what was I thinking anyway? In my brain, how did I think this was going to work out? I feel like a crazy person whose version of reality only appears to overlap with everyone else’s. The Narrative begins to creep into ordinary life. Suddenly, I find myself walking around and watching the world, while wondering how I can fit this or that scene or conversation or General Feeling of It All into my book.

I begin putting together non-narrative related collections of words at service of The Narrative.

1) research including research on strange subjects that the FBI or Interpol might consider troubling

2) story outlines with chapter titles which look really inane (to me) without the story

3) story synopses in which I occasionally write myself little notes like SERIOUSLY? and THERE IS NO PLOT HERE – and on rare occasion something like **REMOVE THIS SELF-DEPRECATING NOTE BEFORE LETTING ANYONE ELSE SEE THIS. NOT THAT ANYONE EVER WILL BECAUSE THERE IS NO PLOT HERE**

4) character and scene sheets which I have every intention of completing later – so as to ensure continuity

5) Other. (By other I mean if anyone else EVER reads these things I intend to firmly maintain plausible deniability. *Obviously* someone else borrowed my laptop and drew those horribly inaccurate diagrams and maps and doodles. Because *I* would never do something that inept. Ha ha.)

Somewhere in the midst of all this work, it now and again occurs to me that I’m a crazy person if none of this works out. Even if I found something else to do, say Final Fantasy console games, at least I’d have other fans out there willing to do these things with me. Heck, all those crazy little charts I’ve allegedly been drawing up could go on gamefaqs.com, where fanatics like me could make good use of them.

Right, I think. All of that is true and well and good. But here I am again, engaging in this possibly futile pursuit with no certain guarantee of reward. And, it really is a lot of work.

Truth be told, though, I love it.Β Β  I even love the part where I’m afraid that this may not pay off in the end, because that’s when you know the work really is going to be rewarding, when it might really mean something to someone.

Or, so I tell myself. This still beats waiting in a line for hours to attend some silly rock concert – not that I would judge anyone else for making that life choice. But then again, maybe I am. Maybe that’s part of that decision to put pen to paper, finger to keyboard, and write – write like there is no tomorrow, like the world really is contained in this tiny little space. And don’t look down from the tightrope.

21 thoughts on “IWSG: Time-Sinks & Other Black Holes

  1. Oh your list made me laugh. The insecurities we suffer. Best of luck! You have to do what you love, no matter what

  2. We all have felt that. I think if you have a single clear goal and remember that everything you are doing is in order to reach that goal, then what you do won’t be a waste of time. And, enjoy and learn from the journey. The goal might change, but you learn from every step.

  3. Oh it’s so not a hobby. We’re running a business here, well trying to anyway…but it is soooo much work.
    And a bit of crazy helps. Love the fact that you leave notes like that on your work. I have many ‘WTF?’ scrawled in my margins at the moment.

  4. Hang in there…I was terrified no one would like my first mystery novel but they did. I worried no one would like my first romance novel but they did. Even worse was book two in my mystery series, I was doubly terrified but readers told me I was getting better. So hang in there but don’t be afraid to switch writing methods to keep the creativity flowing!

    D.B. McNicol
    Romance & Mystery…writing my life

  5. You have a wonderful sense of humour!
    “… story outlines with chapter titles which look really inane (to me) without the story…” Mmm, why does this sound familiar? LOL
    Maybe there’s a niche for “Story-less outlines with chapter titles club”? Could attract lots of members. LOL
    Writer In Transit

  6. Ha, great post. Nothing is guaranteed in life now, is it? We write for the love of it, although success is always welcomed. And it’s okay to change things around in your writing ways, if that’s what you want to do. Why not? πŸ™‚
    Silvia @

  7. Nice list! I’m in that insecure place right now, beating myself up, thinking about why I’m doing this to myself. At the same time, I’m more actively pursuing publication than ever before, so I imagine it comes with the territory.

  8. I’ve waited in line for a concert before. When I was much younger of course.
    I feel that way when I’m putting together a story. It isn’t until the first draft is done that I think it might be all right. I think a lot of writers feel that way.
    Welcome to the IWSG!

  9. I am a crazy person as well, and as a writer, I always fear that it won’t work out for me. I always wonder who would be insane enough to want to read my work. Then I figure if I’m crazy enough to write it, then there are bound to be at least a few people out there crazy enough to read my words, and I feel better.

    Welcome to IWSG!

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