Several months ago, my husband and I bought a Lance Armstrong exercise bike. Those that know me know I’m not exactly big on exercising – I never have been – so it won’t come as a shock that after the newness of the bike wore off, so did my desire to use it. My husband, on the other hand, works out on a very regular basis and encourages me to do the same. “Your doctor said you’d feel better,” he often says. And even though I know he’s right and I want to get in shape anyway for summer, every time I walk by the room where we keep the bike, I just keep walking. Even though I know once I do I’ll be happy with the results, I can’t seem to find the drive to actually get started.

Which was the exact same problem that, up until a little over a month ago, I was having with writing. Though I had what I consider to be a stellar story idea and had even mapped out a really rough outline for a potential trilogy of said idea, I still had trouble taking that first step into my office and getting started. I think a big reason for that now is the same one keeping me from exercising: I knew it would take a lot of time and effort to get up that metaphorical hill, and I just couldn’t talk myself into climbing it. But a few weeks ago, that finally changed. One day out of nowhere, I was in the mood to write. Not only in the mood, but the old feeling I used to get when crafting together my thesis manuscript bubbled back up, making me realize that the only way this book would ever come to be is if I started writing it. And that desire – that impossibly strong need to finish it – hasn’t gone away since. Even on days when I don’t have time to write, I’m constantly working out in my mind what should happen next in my story. And to beat it all, I’m actually really, truly excited about it! I haven’t been able to say that in a while. Case in point: yesterday I wrote more than 5,000 words. Granted, they were pretty rough and I’m already thinking of scenes I need to alter or scrap all-together, but that still makes me really happy. Because I’m writing again. And that, in and of itself, is something I’m pretty damn proud of!

So to all you other aspiring authors out there, if you hit a rough patch and can’t write for a while, I’m living proof that writing droughts can end. You just have to make up your mind to let them.

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