Writer’s Block is like Wrangling Teenagers
I have two teenage boys. Teenagers aren’t fun. I realize that as a ten year teaching veteran all in secondary education this should seem like a no brainer. While I was teaching, I knew that teenagers are tough. I had the brain research that indicates their dendrites are dissolving in one part of the brain to grow new dendrites in other parts of the brain. I understood that the frontal lobe is really disconnected for all intent and purpose during adolescence. I applied it in my management and I’m a great teacher. I would tell frustrated parents that teenagers just suck in general.
I feel that I’m an even better parent because I can be openly honest with my kids in a way I never could completely with my students. I loved being a mother. Currently that’s not the case, my teenagers suck. They’re like three year olds with a much more creative vocabulary. I’m not having any fun at this stage. Infancy was just a huge con. Sucking me in with cuteness and helplessness so that I would feel misgivings about killing them in times like this.
I’m having those same feelings about my second book in The Esau Continuum. The first book took effort to write, but it flowed linearly in a way that most of my writing doesn’t. The Esau Convergence is taking a serpentine route. The last chapter came very early in the process. I’ve constructed the story through 19 chapters. I say constructed because this book has been a labor…..of love, don’t mistake me, but a labor nonetheless.
There’ve also been differences in my schedule. I was teaching while I worked on The Esau Emergence. My writing time was more structured out of a necessity to get any writing done. Oh my kids complained about my two hour, locked door sessions. “You always make breakfast on Sunday!” They still make those requests and now that I’m writing ‘full-time’, they feel free to impinge on my time for any random thing. Indeed, I feel more obligated to put my writing aside and DO more housework, yuck!
Intrusions lead to writing block. Okay, writing speed bump might be more appropriate. My flow isn’t flowing. During idle moments, like driving or working out, or trying to sleep, my characters leap to action. It’s quite irritating because when I try to get to those places during my ‘writing time’ I come up empty. I feel like the story is stomping its foot and telling me what a bitch I’m being. That might’ve been the eighteen year old…..you get my point.
I’m thisclose to wrapping up the second novel and starting it down the clunky assembly line that is Publishing A Book, but I can’t get past the yard work, the dog walking, the laundry and the upcoming graduation. Never mind the early summer snow storms that keep pushing the yard work back and sending me into hibernation mode. Note that list doesn’t include teenagers either.
My labor of love is turning into a scrabble. I hate to push the finish into June, but this push and pull between story and characters is driving me as mad as my teenagers are. I know now why The Beard hasn’t approved my plan to purchase a motorhome….I think he knows that I’d load the dogs and my computer to go on writing walk about and leave HIM with the teenagers!