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WRITER'S LIFE
Nonfiction
January, 2008


The Shy Writer

Rediscover Your Passion
Re-inspire yourself
By  Kimberly Dawn Wells

Sometimes for inspiration you need to plow back into previous writing projects.
After having officially renounced my previous career as a website designer and spending two years referring to myself as a "writer," I hit a slump. We're not talking "a few days off to sit around and watch TV" slump. We're talking a "haven't touched a pen in weeks and the computer keyboard is covered with dust" slump. A "Christmas was ok but I can't pay the bills this spring unless I sell something" slump. A "why can't I get out of bed?" slump.

For months I barely wrote at all. I abandoned my novels, hardly touched my articles, and severely neglected some contracted work. At first I just thought it was the weather, the recurring strep throat, or the stress of my dad's heart attack and other personal issues at home. But the holidays came and went and I wasn't feeling any better.

Three months went by and I had still created nothing. For a few days things really got bad and I even considered quitting. I had come so far into a career I thought I was truly passionate about in all aspects, but instead of feeling joyful I was feeling empty and disgusted. I had nothing left to give, what was there left to do? But even while part of me wanted to quit – was ready to quit – a tiny flame inside me refused to go out. I knew it was time for a change.

When I need a change I leave the house. Most of the time I can work quite effectively in my home office but a change of scenery always energizes my muse. In my small rural town there are only a few places to write where I won't get kicked out or strange looks. I tried the coffee shops, the park, the library, but it wasn't enough. I had to get farther
away.

I gathered boxes and boxes of my work. Papers I had scribbled on, two-year-old files, ancient notes on napkins, abandoned projects, books on writing and editing, and half-filled journals were stuffed into my Explorer. I made reservations for a small hotel room, left instructions for the dog sitter, and drove three hours from central Wisconsin to Minneapolis to spend two days at the Mall of America.

I drove straight through a snowstorm, determined to make it to the mall and enjoy my weekend. I really couldn't afford this trip – the money needed to go elsewhere – but I knew how important it could be to my career. I spent those two days at the mall doing research at bookstores, reading through my boxes of projects, people watching, sorting out the useable from the useless, and rediscovering goals I had set for myself before I even knew I would be writing full time. Five hours into hogging three tables at the Barnes & Noble café, I had accomplished more than in the previous few months. I already felt better.

Over the next day and a half I slowly emerged from my editorial stupor. I reorganized my priorities and thought of new ideas for projects I had previously felt stuck on. Slowly, I remembered why I had decided to write in the first place. It was because of my limitless ideas and burning need to share them with the world. How had I forgotten that? Where had all those ideas gone?

I realized that part of my problem was the tunnel vision I developed over deadlines and challenging projects I had been putting off. When I started writing full-time, each project I started was one of dozens of ideas I chose from. I had big plans for each of my niche areas, and there was no end to the opportunities before me. Unfortunately, I allowed myself to get caught up in what other people wanted out of me, and neglected my own dreams and passions in the process.

In order to be a successful writer you must have passion. Getting passionate isn't often a problem. In fact, passion is what turns ordinary people into writers before they even know what has happened. Keeping the passion amidst the deadlines and rejection letters, and the occasional drivel that escapes your fingertips, is the key.

Are you feeling stuck in your writing? Does the thought of finishing a challenging project, or starting a new one for that matter, seem unbearable? Perhaps it's time for a change. Not a change of careers, mind you, but a change of heart. Take a step back. Revisit old projects and goals. Remember what you were passionate about when you first started writing. What did you love about it? What excited you? When you reconnect with those feelings you once had, your writing will take on a whole new meaning, and your opportunities will once again be limitless.
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Kimberly Dawn Wells is a creative opportunist with interests in several areas of business and writing. She is currently Editor of Squidoo.com's weekly SquidU Review and Editing & Publishing Topic Editor at Suite101.com. In addition to publishing several of her personal writing projects, Kimberly seeks to fill the missing gaps in today's offering of published nonfiction. Meet and contact Kimberly.

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© Freelance Writing Organization - International 1999-2049

Nonfiction
IN This Issue
Part III: What Your Publisher Won't Tell You
Part II: What Your Publisher Won't Tell You
Part I: What Your Publisher Won't Tell You
The Delusional Is No Longer Marginal
Part II: Researching Nonfiction
Part I: Researching Nonfiction
Rediscover Your Passion
Pet Prose
Successful Influence
There's Money In That Junk Mail!

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Whose Books Are Turning Into Movies?
Bald Ego
Mouse Over To Pause

Writer’s Block
The path to inspiration starts
Upon the trails we’ve known;
Each writer’s block is not a rock,
But just a stepping stone.

Poetry Is Not
Penned to the page
Waiting for us to admire.
It is only a lonely thought
Caught by tears on fire.

Silent Echoes
A quiet rhyme upon a page
Is what a poet gives;
Some gentle words whispered in trust
To see if memory lives.

Bard From Deadlines
What makes a poem finally work
Is not the time it takes;
It’s how the poet used the muse
To prophet from mistakes.

Be Mused
The art and craft of poetry
Are not so far apart;
The craft comes from the cunning,
The rest comes from the heart.

Fine Vintage
Don’t plant your poem on the page
As though you’re hanging drapes;
It’s shape and flow should come and grow
Like wild summer grapes.

Getting It Write
Writers write what they know best,
Their passions, fears, and dreams;
Writers rarely write about
What other call their “themes.”

Double Vision
A writer’s life is paradox,
It’s more than what it seems;
We write of our reality,
The one inside our dreams.

Poetry
The echo of a promise,
The thunder of a sigh,
The music of a memory,
A child asking why.

Letter Perfect
Twenty six symbols arranged on a page
Can send a soul to heaven or torment it with rage,
Can free a fragile world or hold it in its net--
The power and the magic of the mighty alphabet.

The Write of Passage
The jump from writing just for fun
To getting paid for it
Begins when you first realize
You know you’ll never quit.

Pegasus
It is not the magic of his wings
That sets us free from our bond.
It is the muse within ourselves
That lets our words lift us beyond.

Photo Poet
Consider your mind the darkroom,
Consider your life the lens,
Consider your eye the camera
On whose focus the poem depends.

Rising Moon
A poem is a rising moon
Shining on the sea,
An afterglow of all we know,
Of all we hope to be.

Star Light
Writing a poem,
Reaching a star,
In making good art
We find who we are.

Spider Web
A poem is a spider web
Spun with words of wonder,
Woven lace held in place
By whispers made of thunder.

Re-Verse
The final draft upon the screen,
At last my poem’s through;
A verse of only four short lines--
I rewrote twenty-two!

Read All Of Charles Ghigna's Poetry at FatherGoose.com


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