Wednesday, September 2, 2015

Roadblocks and challenges...

The person who coined the phrase "it's like remembering how to ride a bicycle" was not referring to the writing process.  At least, not mine.

After some thirty-five traditionally published books, writing was not just what I did, it was who I was.  And after writing those books, the rhythm of story, the flow of writing a book, was part of me for good.  Or so I thought.

Not that my muse faithfully remained at my side...or that every book was easy to write.  But, I was able to make good progress and judge my timing of the writing process in relation to a given deadline.  And then, I hit a brick wall.

My mom passed away, and that took the wind out of my sails--even though I still had several books to finish on deadlines, which I did do.  But after that, I think I fell into a serious case of burn-out and didn't submit new proposals or write for over a year, or even find the motivation to keep up with my online groups--like this one.  I  finally did self publish three novels (out in 2014) and complete a couple of novellas--one for the Sweet Christmas Kisses  anthology last year, and one for the Sweet Christmas Kisses Vol II  anthology coming out this fall, and I'm now very happy to also be back under a three-book contract.   But the first book of this contract was a challenge!  I did lose a lot of weeks due to health problems.  Plus, had unexpected travel, and managed to break my hand...and just after getting the cast off, one of our mares kicked that very spot while I was doing chores.  More weeks of one-handed typing! But those things aside, it was also more challenging to simply "get back in the groove." I am so thankful to have a wonderful editor with a sharp eye for detail, so I can make the book stronger through revisions.  And now, I feel a bit like a race horse at a starting gate--really excited about starting the next one!

How about you?  Have you ever hit a roadblock that sent you off course--and how did you handle it?  Have you found yourself at a point in your career (writing or otherwise) where you ended up heading in a totally different direction?

Roxanne's "An Irish Christmas Blessing" novella is part of the Sweet Christmas Kisses Anthology, Vol II, which will be released digitally in all formats  9/30/15.


Roxanne Rustand
@roxannerustand  (Twitter)

www.facebook.com/roxanne.rustand

3 comments:

  1. Roxanne, My story is a bit different, yet has the same central core. The worst event in my life (eventually) started me on my road to writing. After the death of my first wife, I used journaling as a coping tool. At the urging of well-meaning friends, who kept saying, "You've got to turn this into a book," I began the process of learning how one actually did that. And along the way, I accepted the challenge of a couple of authors/teachers to try my hand at writing fiction. Four years and forty rejections later, I got my first contract for a novel. But the best thing to come of all this is the book I wrote about the loss of a spouse. Want to hear God laugh--make plans. His are always better.

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  2. I enjoyed this interview, and also identified with the burnout she described. I love stories of overcoming the very difficult challenges we often face in life. It's encouraging.

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  3. I enjoyed this interview, and also identified with the burnout she described. I love stories of overcoming the very difficult challenges we often face in life. It's encouraging.

    ReplyDelete