Today’s post is part of the Insecure Writer’s Support Group, a blog hop where insecure writers like myself can share our worries and offer advice and encouragement. Click here to find out more about IWSG and see a list of participating blogs.
I don’t usually answer the optional IWSG question each month, but this month’s question sort of relates to what I wanted to write about anyway:
How do major life events affect your writing? Has writing ever helped you through something?
I can answer these questions fairly easily, or at least I could until recently.
- In 1993, I lost my father. Books helped me cope with that, especially Frank Herbert’s Dune. This is the reason why I decided to become a writer.
- In 2008, I discovered that my girlfriend, the only woman I’ve ever truly loved, was cheating on me. So I wrote a cheesy Sci-Fi love story, and that helped me cope.
- For well over a decade now, I’ve worked in the news business. It’s a high stress job that often exposes me to some of the worst that humanity has to offer. So I’ve been writing a series of short stories and novellas about a journalist who travels through time. That helps me cope.
Throughout my life, writing has always been my best coping mechanism. But there have been times when I’ve been too stressed, too traumatized, or too emotionally drained to write. So what do you do when your best coping mechanism fails?
2018 has been an all-around troublesome year for me. Minor and major life events seem to keep piling up. Witnessing a murder back in July was obviously the worst, but even before that happened I was struggling. I spent much of this year dealing with financial problems, health concerns, and a work-related issue that took an agonizingly long time to resolve.
The latest crisis has been family drama. I have a couple relatives who do not have the foggiest idea what’s wrong with me but who apparently know exactly what I should be doing to fix it. Admittedly, this is not the worst thing that’s happened to me this year. But still, it is so irritating.
Through this whole pileup of problems, my writing has been inconsistent. Some days, some weeks, I go into a writing frenzy unlike anything I’ve experienced in the past. But other times, I feel so worn out that I can’t write anything at all. This is understandable, I think, but it’s also a problem because when I have so much stuff to cope with, I really need my #1 best coping mechanism to work.