My current novel in progress is almost finished. Only a few chapters to go, and everything is plotted to the nth degree. Which means my brain has time to roam for a change. I spent the last two weeks fighting off a viral infection, which left me too sick to write. Not writers block per se, mind you, but exhaustion and illness are huge inhibiters to the creative process.
However, Thalia, the muse of comedy still visited me. Even though I couldn't pound out witty dialogue on the computer, my mind took flight. With this book almost out the door, the deliciously delightful topic of what to write next is back on the table. I let ideas float around my brain like a giant vegetable soup - I threw everything in. Since I'm going to pitch to an agent and an editor at National, I know I've got to have several additional stories ready to toss at them, should they ask. After all, it is good to be seen as prolific, and having the ability to be more than a one hit wonder. It was so much fun to revisit my scribbled notes of possible story lines. I'm hit by these all the time, and find it hard every time to only write down the seed of an idea, and not immediately help it to bloom. Right now I have eight strong possibilities in my idea garden, and they all excite me. Oops - make that nine, because Thalia threw me another one yesterday. Just the profile of a hero...but it is enough to get my engines revving.
Almost fully recovered, I sat down last night with every intention of reimmersing myself in my WIP. I've missed writing, missed my characters, missed the thrill of a really well crafted line. But something went horribly wrong. My brain was so scattered with the thrill of exploring future stories that I couldn't settle back down to this one. I pounded out a paltry 500 words (and I'd been aiming for several thousand), each one a viscious struggle. Now, I don't believe in writers block, so I know I will wrestle my brain and focus back into submission tonight. But it is hard to re-commit myself to the present with so much to look forward to. Has anyone else felt this conundrum?