I’m Tired of Writing


Do you ever feel that way? Wiped clean. Buzzed dry. Rolled flat.

Yea, that’s me today. And I’m not afraid to say it. I’m a writer, who for once, is sick of writing.

Gasp! I know, right?

But here’s the thing. I do it all day for my job. I do it after work for my freelancing. I do it on the weekends for my short stories and my novel. I even scribble down ideas during lunch break for this blog.

Seriously, is there something wrong with me?

I usually love writing. I always thought you can never grow sick of your deepest passion. But today—at 29 years old and feeling like a sap—I proved myself wrong.

Maybe it’s not the writing. Maybe it’s the constant working toward a goal that seems so far off. Maybe I’m just tired in general of seeing others float while I have to fight. And maybe it sometimes just feels a bit UNFAIR.

But then I remind myself that all writers struggle. Just like artists and musicians. Because if you want to live and breathe the art, that’s the only way you’ll ever truly make it. 

But you know what? I think today, I feel like dancing instead.

So to heck with any more writing right now. I’m gonna turn on the music and boogie down…

MY QUESTION TO YOU: Do you ever suffer burnout? And if so, how do you get over it?

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[Note: I’m opening up my blog for more guest-posting. Do you have an idea you want to write for “Rogue Writer?” Or do you want me to write something for your site? Contact me and let me know!]

30 thoughts on “I’m Tired of Writing

    1. I make money because I work in Corporate America developing communication plans and marketing materials. 🙂 But the writing that feeds my soul? I don’t make money there … at least not yet. I have to work just as hard as anyone else to make it as an author (OUTSIDE of my work hours). So know you’re in good company and keep writing! Don’t give up.

  1. I have an intriguing journey I’d like to share with you…But; I must admit…it is so deep, it is worthy of publishing status…let me know if I shoudl send it to you somehow….
    What I do when I hit a writer’s block?….I stream of conscious on paper towel, pieces of paper, write on blank pages in my old journals, stretch, write a letter to a favorite teacher, create a greeting card, watch a child’s face light up when I smile at them….oh, yes, and I most definitely dance…to Michael Jackson’s Thriller….:-)

  2. Definitely agree with the physical activity. I do historical fencing twice a week – without the sword in one hand and the pen in the other I feel unbalanced. Relax your mind and stretch your muscles, the opposite will happen when you sit down to write. Best luck with the writing x

  3. dear rogue writer,

    I definately think you should dance … then I think you should write about it. I’ve been wanting to write to you about a previous post you wrote about religion, your doubts about religion and 9/11. I can understand how so many can think, “look at all the bad in the world that is done in the name of religion.” But, then, you have to look around and realize, “look at all the good that can be done in the name of religion” as well. On the 10th anniversary of 9/11, I spent the morning teaching Hebrew school (a term here that I know causes many to shudder). But being with my Jewish community, and hearing Jewish adolescent kids ask questions about 9/11 and talk about all the good things they were going to do in the coming year gave me great comfort. So, I wish you a sweet new year filled with creative inspiration and a renewed sense of faith. Shana Tova!

    1. Dear Transplanted North,

      Thank you!! What inspiring words! And I really like your idea about dancing … then writing about it. In the ten years since I grew angry (as outlined in my 9/11 post), I’ve learned the difference between religion and faith. And I agree with you, great things HAVE been done in the name of religion, but I believe it’s by those who also have great faith. This new year has already begun bringing me a renewed sense of faith. What a way for you to spend the 10-year anniversary. I bet it was a very comforting environment.

      I just read your 9/11 story on your blog, and it was very moving. Thank you for sharing it.

      Shana Tova!
      Shari

    1. Thank you Jane (Dr. Chin)! Such a pleasure to meet you and I’m glad you found me via Patrick’s tweet. Yes, I enjoy watching a good movie and forgetting about the computer for awhile, but dancing is my first love, and sometimes you just gotta return to it! 🙂

  4. Hi Shari, I think we all once in a while we all feel burn out – work, life, ….., and I usually take a break, whatever it is – long walk by myself, dancing, good old chick flick, comfort food, like I said whatever it is. After reading this post, I don’t even know how do you have time to read and comment on any other blogs. I hope you feel better soon, because I love reading your posts

    1. Ha! LOL! I actually feel bad sometimes because I often DON’T have time to read and comment on others’ blogs (let alone, always answer everyone who comments on my blog). But I pay special close attention to those who always read my stuff. It’s my way of showing I care about and appreciate you and your writing. 😉 So THANK YOU!

      I actually just got back from a Zumba class tonight. I’m replying to everyone here, then closing down the computer for the night!

  5. Heck YES, I suffer burnout. Might have a case of it RIGHT this moment. I think for those of us who write professionally, it’s often very hard to find an ounce of strength to write what we really are passionate about (our fiction) at the end of the day -or beginning of the day (after a late night working on client projects). Sometimes I wish I were in a different profession for THAT reason alone… might make me appreciate those after-hours writing times a bit more. BUt since I’m not – and do relish the benefits of writing for a living – I find other ways around the burnout. This morning, nice long 4 mile hike in the desert, despite LOOMING deadlines. I just HAD to get away. And now I am going to read Patrick’s link b/c I can always use new ideas!

    1. I’m going to check out Patrick’s link probably later this evening as well. 🙂 I hear ya. I’ve contemplated the “quitting my job for Starbucks” idea to concentrate on my creative writing. But then I stop and really think. And I’m grateful to be able to write for a living. Just sometimes, it feels like TOO much. I think this weekend will be a full-on writing break.

  6. You have NO idea…. (and I’ve been at this as a professional business/tech writer a long, long time) I started blogging to make myself write everyday and get more invested in my writing. It’s gotten a lot better since, in the past 7 months. My recovery is to write every single day…. which ultimately led to a breakthrough and finishing a long-term WIP. But boy is it hard… it’s just day by day, take heart in the little victories, focus on the happy stuff and avoid stress, and take heart from all the writer friends you meet online for their support and encouragement! Hang in there (and I think the dancing prob. helps more than you know!)!

  7. I feel your pain, Shari. It’s so tough when you write for a living, and feel blessed to be able to do so, but you also long to do a “different” kind of writing. Then you wake up one day and realize you just don’t want to work seven days a week any more, no matter how much you love your work, no matter how quickly the nonstop work is propelling you toward your dreams. Enough is enough. I think dancing is a great idea. I like to just get away from my usual four walls for a little while — whether it’s a walk around the neighborhood or a day spent in the car running errands. It’s a break from the same-old and it often helps break my tired funk.

    1. I know exactly what you mean, Jessica. I feel very blessed that I can write for a living. But sometimes, as I said before in my reply to Melissa, I have that “quit my job for Starbucks” urge, to really work on that creative writing. But then I stop myself and remind myself how many other writers would love to be in my shoes, and I tell myself to shut up. LOL!

      Those are some great tips. Thank you so much for taking the time to stop and share them with me.

  8. Switching to another creative interest, even for just an hour, does the trick for me. I love to create my own greeting cards. Feeling the paper, finding a pleasing juxtaposition for the colors and shapes, and using my clever crafting tools never fail to get my creative juices flowing. In addition, I get the satisfaction of seeing my finished product, which often isn’t possible with my writing, especially when I’m knee deep in the middle of writing a difficult scene.

    Mmmm…did someone say bacon? And chocolate? Pretty sure you can’t go wrong with those pick-me-ups either. 🙂

    1. Ha! Bacon and chocolate. Love it!! I like your idea, of switching to another creative outlet (for me, it sometimes tends to be baking chocolate chip cookies or banana bread). In the past, when I’ve done that, it really has helped. I’ll have to force myself to try that again in the VERY near future.

      Thanks!

  9. I love how dance always makes me feel more energetic and creative. I take a couple of classes a week just for myself. I think if you write all the time for work and during your free time, you might be draining your creativity. Dancing (or some other inspiring activity) might help you get back your mojo. Julia Cameron, author of The Artist’s Way, calls it filling the well.

    1. “Filling the well,” I like it! Yes, I’ve been a dancer all my life (until recently, where I’m ashamed to say I need to train and get back in shape). Dancing ALWAYS gets my blood pumping and my mind flowing. I heard that Twyla Tharp, the infamous choreographer of the Broadway dance show “Moving Out,” wrote a book about that very topic: how dance releases your creative juices.

      Thank you, Shary (my name, except with a “y”)!

  10. I definitely suffer from burnout, whether it’s with my blog, pursuing side projects or just work. I try to remind myself it will pass and that I can step away from it without worrying about “oh no, do I actually not like what I am doing?” I think we have a tendency (especially in the higher education setting where I work) to place so much emphasis on the word “passion” which students (and non-students) take to mean that if you are passionate about something, you want to do it all the time and never tire of it. With those expectations, it can be daunting to ever consider something your “passion.” So enjoy your dancing!!

    1. I never saw passion in that light, Caryn. What an eye-opening revelation! I think you’re very right. Those expectations can be very daunting. Perhaps if I let go of them, and pursue others fun interests in the interim, the creativity will naturally flow back!

  11. Oh my! I feel your pain, as someone who is pursuing creative writing yet writes for a living as well. Couple that with the fact that writing, as much as one may love it, is hard work, and what you’re feeling is entirely natural.

    A songwriter/musician I interviewed on my road trip advised going easy on yourself. Write when the creative tide is in, do administrative work when the tide is out. He also shared some tips on what to do to lure that tide back in:

    http://artistsroad.wordpress.com/2010/11/29/maximizing-your-creativity/

    I’d add to that list that it’s okay to step away from creativity for a bit. If you truly love it, at some point you’ll itch to return to it. I feel that way when I abstain too long from eating bacon!

    1. Patrick, I just read that post, and it was FANTASTIC advice. I highly encourage anyone else reading this to head on over and read the post Patrick posted above. I also really like the advice of writing when the tide is in, and doing admin work when it’s out. What a great way to create natural balance.

      Thank you for sharing!

  12. Hey Shari, My recipe for ‘anti-burnout’ is to glue my eyeballs to a good movie, even a mediocre one while eating a bag of chips and enough chocolate to give me a pleasant bellyache. Then I can hit the laptop for more pounding of the keyboard.

C'mon, you MUST be thinking something.

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