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  • Writer's pictureE. Paige Burks

Chasing Our Tails

This week has been incredibly trying, starting with a project that I’ve easily invested 20 hours of work into not wanting to cooperate. Last night by the time I got up from my computer, I just wanted to bang my head on my desk and cry. I’d spent four hours downloading and uploading and trying to learn script just to make this thing work, with nothing to show for it.

Now, as I sit here, I think I may have solved my problem, and I’m praying to all the book-gods to make this solution stick. I also happen to look over at my cat, Toby, and catch him doing this:

And it occurs to me that this is what I’ve felt like I’ve been doing ALL WEEK with this project. And sometimes I feel like I do this with my writing.

Sometimes, particularly when I’m stuck on a plot point, I find myself writing in circles. I want so badly to make this one thing fit. But we can’t do that to ourselves as writers. We need to be more creative than that. Sometimes those things don’t work out because there’s a better, more eloquent solution to what we’re doing.

I’ve often found that once I realize what I’m doing and stop trying to force things, it comes much easier. And, often, the idea is pretty kick-a$$! So don’t paint yourself into a corner with your work. Let it flow like it’s meant to, and don’t stress if you hit a bump. You’ll find a solution to it. We always do 🙂

What are some of your “tail-chasing” moments and how did you overcome them?

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