Blogging Hiatus

Hey everyone, I hope you’re all well πŸ™‚

My break in August was great, but after a year and a half of pandemic and two years of an MA in Creative Writing that I mostly hated, it wasn’t enough. Posting feels like another item on an endless to do list right now, so after a lot of thought I’ve decided to take a longer break.

Merlin sleeping on our VR box
Merlin curled up asleep taking a break whilst I played VR!

I barely wrote again in August, and until I’ve made progress towards finishing a first draft I won’t be blogging. I’ve been trying to finish a draft for 5 years, and the pressure during my MA didn’t help. Even though it’s been 8 months since I finished my last assignment the desire to write hasn’t fully returned. Other writers seem to finish drafts easily, and I need to figure out why I rarely finish anything at all.

Sunrise at the beach with waves crashing against the shore
Sunrise at the beach and waves crashing against the shore. At the moment I’d rather be at the beach or video gaming than write, which is probably part of the problem.

Perhaps I haven’t been trying as hard as I could, or piling on too many distractions. First it was recapping Flash/Arrow episodes, which took hours away from writing, then it was Twitter hashtag games and weekly short stories, which might’ve helped, but writing/editing them took so much time. Then it was work experience in publishing, blog hops, and my MA. I’m terrible at managing lots of tasks, but I keep adding more to my plate and avoiding the one thing I say I want to do.

Flash and Arrow Coasters
TV, one of my biggest distractions: Flash and Arrow Coasters, found at the carboot market for Β£1!

Maybe I’m scared to finish a book, or convinced it’ll never be as good as my favourites, and that’s why I keep procrastinating. Maybe I’m not destined to write at all. Either way, I need to see what happens if I have nothing (okay, as little as possible) on my plate. To those who write, blog, work, have kids and manage to juggle it all, I have no idea how you do it. I often wonder if there’s something wrong with me because I can’t multitask and get overwhelmed when there’s too much to do.

I’m not leaving the community completely. I’ll still visit my favourite blogs, I just won’t post for a while: Until at least Jan 2022. I might use Instagram/Twitter, as I don’t need to edit longer posts, Goodreads for book reviews, and Tumblr for memes/random diary type posts. That’s only a maybe though. Mostly I’ll be AFK as I focus on as few commitments as possible and try to rediscover my love of writing.

Arcade Prizes Octopuses
Being AFK includes going to the arcades, winning sweets and stuffed octopus, and getting used to going out for fun again after so long being inside.

I’ll leave you with an inspirational quote which I’m trying to live up to:

Passion should be felt in the present, not in the idea of future accomplishment.

Basically, I should be enjoying the process of writing, not the big scary idea of finishing a draft. That’s what I’m aiming for, and whilst I’m at it I might tackle my never-ending TBR list.

So see you around, in a friendly neighbourhood Spiderman capacity, but not in a posting capacity πŸ™‚

Merlin hiding in his new cardboard house
Merlin hiding in his new cardboard house! We’re hibernating for autumn/winter πŸ™‚

scales divider copy

Thanks for Reading!

How was August? Do you ever want to disappear from the internet for a bit? How do you manage multiple tasks?

Chat in the Comments, if you’re new, check out the about page, and I’ll be back Someday!

38 comments

  1. Absolutely, enjoying the process of writing is important, rather than procrastinating or feeling too stressed with so much to do and being worried about the end product.

    You’ve had a lot on and these times aren’t easy anyway, even without the things you have on your to-do list.

    I think a longer blogging break is a good idea. We’ll all be here whenever you come back to post. Take out anything you don’t want to do and don’t have to do. Get some rest and do things you enjoy. Don’t put too much pressure on yourself and get lots of cuddles with Merlin!

    Caz xxxx

    Liked by 1 person

    • Thanks πŸ™‚ And you’re right, times have been hard recently: I think I keep trying to downplay the effect current events have had rather than accepting how badly living in uncertain times for so long affects mental health. Time to take a step back, re-evaluate, have lots of kitty cuddles, and stop piling on the pressure πŸ™‚

      Hope you’re doing as well as you can be xxx

      Liked by 1 person

  2. Take some time for you. And please, stop comparing to others. Everyone has their path.

    If you do go back to writing, all I can recommend is trust yourself. You clearly read a lot. Consume stories. Do whatever you can to quiet your critic and let yourself play. Let it be fun.

    I have a few ideas on that, but those work for me and may not for you. That’s okay! Everyone is different, and we have to find what works for us.

    Liked by 1 person

    • I think comparing myself to others is my main problem, and definitely something I need to work on!

      Thanks πŸ™‚ I’m sure writing’s something I’ll find my way back to eventually, after I binge watch a few of my favourite shows/books and maybe go back to what got me into writing in the first place: fanfiction, fanart, and anything low pressure and for fun πŸ™‚

      Liked by 1 person

  3. Hi, my friend! I’m glad you had a nice August break!
    Your feelings are valid and understandable. It’s difficult to get writing done when there is a lot to do. I know what you mean by that. With social media, news reading, drawing, and trying to keep up with shows along with reading – it’s been tough for me to find time and motivation to edit. So, I hope this hiatus helps you. You have my support. I agree with Priscilla though, it’s okay to be slow while writing. We all have our own pace. I’ve been working on my short/novella since 2018 (it’s going to need at least a partial rewrite, I think), so no worries. Take as much time as you need. I support you. I’m here for you. We’ll keep in touch by email then. πŸ™‚ Feel free to reach out anytime – don’t worry about sending me too many emails.

    Take care. All the best. I believe in you :). :).

    Liked by 1 person

    • Thanks πŸ™‚ Yeah, I think having too many things to do can sometimes drain creativity. Hopefully you’ll get the motivation and time to edit a little bit soon πŸ™‚ I’m hoping a break from everything I can realistically put on hiatus will help. Yeah, I need to stop comparing myself to others, especially those who write and publish a book, or more, in a year. I’ve been working on one idea for over ten years ^_^” Of course, email is cool, and if you don’t hear from me in a while, feel free to nudge me, I can be a bit scatter-brained! Take care too πŸ˜€

      Liked by 1 person

      • Definitely. I think that’s why I have felt drained on writing long stories. Artwork is the only thing keeping me going creatively. Do you plan to do some drawings soon? Thank you so much! I hope so too πŸ™‚ You like to edit a bit at a time, correct, my friend? πŸ™‚

        Yeah, breaks can help. I hope you have a relaxing one. It is super easy to compare yourself to other writers. I’ve done that myself. I recently felt like I wasn’t a real writer because I wasn’t writing or researching as much/in-depth as other writers. But, a friend helped me to cheer up and helped me remember that I’m a writer. Nonetheless, I can relate to what you said as my superhero story still needs to be rewritten and it’s been like 3 years. I know 10 is much longer, but sometimes it takes more time. You can do it- go Louise (and don’t push yourself too hard :)). Sounds good, you’re welcome to email me anytime; I’m here for ya.

        Liked by 1 person

        • Yeah, writing long stories when you have lots of other commitments is hard. Glad you’ve been drawing though πŸ™‚ I might do Inktober, a picture a day in October! Yeah editing bit by bit is easier for me.

          Thanks, you are 100% a real writer, and I’m glad your friend helped you πŸ™‚ All progress, no matter how much, is important πŸ˜€ (I’m trying to believe that myself too!) I almost feel like slower writing is better as I get to know my characters more, and I imagine you have too with your superhero story πŸ™‚ They’ve changed a lot during that time, and the story’s evolved too! We’ll both get there eventually πŸ™‚ At the moment I’m at the stage where I’m only writing or thinking about writing if I feel like it, I’m not even going to force it!

          Liked by 1 person

          • Yeah that definitely is a tough thing to do. Inktober should be fun. Have you joined in Inktober before?
            I plan to start editing bit by bit soon. You got this πŸ™‚

            Aw thank you. Yes, all progress that is made is important and you got this. I believe in you. And, you’re right, if you take your time, you get more time to explore and know your characters. That’s what’s happened with me. I’ve spent a lot of time writing spinoffs that have helped me know them. How have your characters and stories changed?
            I have a character that I need to change. Her name is Amal and I found her to be too much like Cisco lol. I gave her teleportation powers and she is kind of silly and energetic. So, I think I’ll have to change her powers a bit (even though I love teleportation, I think having that element makes her too similar to Cisco as she is upbeat and silly, kind of like how Cisco was in Season 1). Also, not sure if she should have a sibling in the story b/c I don’t want it to be too similar to the Flash.

            Anyway, enough of my rambles. I’m glad you’re not going to force it. That makes things more stressful. Glad you’re taking a more stress-free way :). You got this. πŸ™‚

            Liked by 1 person

            • Nope, I never had the time to try Inktober before, but always wanted to! Editing bit by bit is a good idea πŸ™‚

              Leo used to be able to go invisible instead of teleport and he used to be richer πŸ™‚ Blaise never had powers in the first short stories I wrote, but like you with Amal’s comparisons to Cisco, Blaise used to be too much like Snart so he had to be changed. Although given how much Cisco changed in later seasons, maybe Amal will be okay as is? Maybe instead of a sibling have a close childhood friend who is found family?

              No worries, happy to bounce ideas around πŸ™‚ I’m thinking about two different projects but struggling to commit to one. Something still feels off about my Merlin story, and I can’t put my finger on it!
              Take it easy and have fun editing πŸ™‚

              Liked by 1 person

              • Yeah there are different Inktober accounts/prompts. Do you plan to try it this year? πŸ™‚

                Oh wow, that’s cool. I forget, what did you change Leo’s powers to? I think it’s understandable that you changed Blaise’s powers/ways. What would you say Cisco’s major changes are? I guess it may be a good idea to keep the silliness aspect for Amal (more or less like a silly mentor lol). I just need to think of other powers for her. Maybe the power of flight and/or teleknesis or being able to fire blasts (or some combo of the 3)? I’ll think more about this.

                πŸ™‚ You’re welcome to bounce ideas with me anytime. It’s tough to commit to a project sometimes. Have you thought about maybe tackling both projects on alternate dates?
                πŸ™‚ You too. All the best. Take it easy, friend. :).

                Liked by 1 person

                • I was going to try Inktober but make my own prompts, like draw each character from my stories or something, although I might follow the official prompt list from Twitter instead πŸ™‚

                  Leo can teleport now, but not far at first πŸ™‚ Cisco seemed to get less funny and more serious over time, although I stopped watching after mid season 4 so I’m unsure if they continued with his less happy attitude. If Amal is going to be a mentor, being able to open portals that spy on people might be cool? Plus you could add some silliness if she opens portals at inconvenient times? Telekinesis sounds cool too though πŸ™‚ She sounds like an awesome character already!

                  Thanks πŸ˜€ I tend to be easily distracted so working on multiple projects might be the way forward! I’m hoping sketching my characters for Inktober will help me choose where to start πŸ™‚

                  Liked by 1 person

                  • Making your own prompts would be cool! Yeah the official prompts list could be helpful πŸ™‚ I support you.

                    How far can Leo teleport?
                    Yeah he still had some of his silliness but got more dour over the years. Ooh I like your idea of Amal opening portals that spy on people. That’d be different than Cisco’s powers for sure. Do you think teleportation itself would be too alike Cisco? Yeah opening portals at the wrong times would work too. LOL like maybe opening a portal when a character is asleep LOL. I’ll think more about the telekenesis possibility. She is one of my faves – and thank you so much πŸ™‚ She’s very caring, intelligent, and like a big sister to the MCs. She is kind, and unlike the typical mentors you see on TV, she’s more laid back and encouraging. πŸ™‚ Do you have a mentor figure in your stories?

                    Anytime! I think that can help! πŸ™‚ How many characters do you want to draw πŸ™‚

                    Liked by 1 person

                    • Thanks, I’m just drawing whatever I feel like, with no pressure to make it good or anything πŸ™‚

                      Leo can teleport to the end of a street at first, not far at all, and only to places he can see. If Amal can open portals, it makes sense that as her power grows, she could learn to teleport through them πŸ™‚ I love the idea of superpowers that grow in strength and you could have lots of funny moments with opening portals in the wrong place πŸ™‚ I do love mentor figures, but my characters don’t really have them, they tend to fumble around blindly until they find the right way to go πŸ˜›

                      I at least want to draw my main characters, but there’s quite a few of them so it’ll probably take all month at one a day πŸ™‚

                      Liked by 1 person

  4. I finally got to Alaer in one of my works-in-progress! I’d been waiting so long to get to my beautiful new ocean planet! (This is one with the two men who are asexual partners and desert the army together; eventually, they end up sailing through a portal into a new world). I did a moodboard for Alaer too, with some pictures I got from other people, and some digital art of my own! (I’m usually no good with moodboards).

    Oh … I’m trying to spend a good chunk of time on Twitter every day to see if I can get something finally going and MARKET my novels. Social Media is tiring, and I have been letting my blog mostly lapse, but I hope to get back into posting some things this month! (Actually, I have an article I may post today or tomorrow; if not then, next week I think).

    Liked by 1 person

    • That’s awesome, congrats πŸ™‚ As well as being fun, moodboards on Pinterest are apparently helpful for marketing too, especially if you link some of the pictures to blog posts. I love collecting pictures for my stories πŸ™‚

      I find social media pretty tiring too, and it’s hard to decide which platforms are worth doing and how often. I’ve discovered one author on Twitter, but mostly just made friends with other writers πŸ™‚ The way I mostly discover new books lately is via sites offering free review copies (Voracious Readers and Hidden Gems) but they cost authors money and I’m not sure if it’s worth it. Good luck with marketing πŸ™‚ I never thought it sounded easy or fun!

      Liked by 1 person

      • Thanks for sharing that info. At the moment, I just have Twitter. I love my moodboards when I make a good one – I love art – but I’m not very good at making stuff I find satisfactory that’s larger than single pieces πŸ™‚

        Liked by 1 person

  5. I’m in awe that you can tell in advance that you need to take a break. I just crash and vanish for months or years on end. Your way is definitely better!

    Enjoy your break and I hope you find that spark and it sets you on fire.

    Liked by 1 person

    • I’m honestly surprised too, with Tumblr or fanfiction sites I often vanish, sometimes permanently, but with WordPress I’ve been more aware of when I’m burning out. Hope you’re doing okay, I can totally understand the need to disappear sometimes πŸ™‚

      And thanks πŸ™‚ It’s going well so far, in that I’m thinking more about writing at least!

      Liked by 1 person

      • That does sound like progress!

        I’m actually writing again for the first time in ages. I just started a new WIP and it’s shiny, new, and a total mess. Fun times. I almost feel bold enough to start venturing back online…

        Liked by 1 person

  6. A longer break is just fine, Louise, and who knows, it may be just the ticket. Writing is hard and I can relate to the lure of distractions. It’s why I write first thing in the morning… otherwise, I’m like a squirrel! I hope you find your routine, your writing happy place, and your story unfolding just the way you want it to.

    Liked by 1 person

  7. That’s awesome! A fantastic drawing strategy, my friend. GO LOUISE! πŸ™‚

    That’s still neat :). Does he use teleportation often?
    Good idea πŸ™‚ Maybe I could have her start by only being able to open portals to spy and then learning to go through them? πŸ™‚ Haha for sure – it’d be fun to have her open one in the wrong place and surprise Matt while he’s reading a comic (and she’d yell “Boo!” and scare him XD). Are there any older sibling found family relationships in your stories where they’re not a mentor but kind of are someone the characters look up to? It’s fun to write them fumble though lol

    You can do it! You got this. Feel free to share your artwork with me :)! Best wishes. I believe in ya.

    Liked by 1 person

    • I lasted three days of drawing in a row xD Apparently doing anything daily just becomes a chore to me, so if I’m going to make anything a habit I need to find a routine I can handle. I’m thinking two days on, two off or something!

      Oh yeah Leo uses his powers all the time, to get to work mostly – he’s too poor to afford the bus so it’s handy! That’d be cool, for Amal to learn to use her powers to travel through portals and scare Matt xD I think the closest I have to found family/older sibling is Mordred and Morgana, as she adopted Mordred and he looks up to her a lot πŸ™‚

      Liked by 1 person

      • It’s hard to make a habit of doing things daily, so no problem :). I think your idea sounds good. 2 days on, 2 days off is less stressful. πŸ™‚ Do you draw in a sketchbook and do you plan to post it on your blog one day as well?

        That is useful – has he used it to go to concerts too?
        Haha yes, she has a very loud sneeze too, so she can def open a portal and scare Matt with her sneeze (not sneeze at him but just how loud it is will scare him, even if she’s sneezing away from him lol). She definitely sees him like a little brother, so I can definitely see her using the portals to scare him on purpose lol.
        That’s cool!! Is Morgana’s name inspired by literature? I’ve heard the name before. Is Morgana very patient with Mordred too :)?

        Liked by 1 person

        • Yeah I don’t think I’m the type of person who benefits from a daily habit, instead of making me productive it just stresses me out! I have a sketchbook, but probably won’t share the 3 drawings I did this month as I didn’t put much effort into them.

          Oh I didn’t think of that, I imagine Leo would probably sneak into concerts and stuff, he’s more neutral or chaotic good than pure good, so he does bend the rules sometimes πŸ™‚ Haha sounds like Amal and Matt have a fun relationship πŸ˜€ Yeah Morgana, and Mordred, are from Arthurian legends. She’s quite patient for the most part, but she’s kinda stoic and seems uncaring too!

          Liked by 1 person

          • Yeah, that can definitely be stressful. Has this month been less stressful? And no worries. I hope you had fun drawing (that’s what matters most) :).

            Haha that’s cool. Has he snuck into parties? Amal and Matt def do have a fun friendship/sibling bond. Matt looks up to her and they have fun banter and they share a lot of interests.
            Aw does Morgana show more of her kindness to Mordred or does she appear stoic to Mordred as well? Your characters are great :).

            Liked by 1 person

            • Yeah I think it’s been less stressful, taking a break is nice, but part of me feels guilty for being so unproductive. Guess I’m just not used to slowing down! Drawing was fun though πŸ™‚

              I’m not sure he’s that into parties, he’s more of an introvert πŸ™‚ I love it when characters banter and share interests πŸ˜€

              Morgana’s kind to Mordred in private but very stoic otherwise, he’s used to it though πŸ™‚ Thanks, yours are awesome too!

              Liked by 1 person

              • Society also has expectations about productivity and seems to tie in productivity with joy, etc. So that may be another factor. I can relate though. I’ve had days where I haven’t drawn and I beat myself up for that. And I have beaten myself up over not being productive, so what you’re feeling is understandable. But, I’m glad taking a break has been good. We all need a break sometimes, and most important thing is to take care of yourself. I support you and am glad you had fun!

                That’s cool. My MC Matt is introverted too lol. Amal would teleport Leo cookies if he wants some :).

                Aw that’s cool. Morgana is kinder in private then. I like characters like that – ones who act tough or stoic in public but are kind in private :). Thank you!

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