Tuesday, November 30

Out to Pasture

In the winter months, we don't get much riding done. It's cold here, freezing right now. I can't muster up a lot of enthusiasm for dragging myself out of a warm house, out to the field to chase a reluctant horse around. Then to get on a cold saddle to ride on frozen, treacherous ground, bleh.
Plus, the older horses benefit from having a vacation. I think it keeps them fresher, more eager to work when the days lengthen and warm.
I have talked here before about how I hate the winter months. The cold, the short days, depression.
But all that aside, I'm having manuscripts out to pasture syndrome right now.
I took a few days off to rest after pushing myself to the wall to finish The Cowboy's Baby. Then a few more days off for Thanksgiving.
The result is I'm having a real hard time getting back to the pasture, er, computer and catching the reluctant horses, er, opening up a document. The longer the manuscripts sit, the less inclined I feel to work on them.
I tell myself it's doing me/the work good to sit, to take a break. And maybe it is. Like the horses, maybe if I take a few weeks off, I'll be more eager to come back to the work at hand. And maybe not.
All I know is right now all I feel like doing is lazing around a warm house while the snow falls outside my window.


  1. Brrr,, just reading your post made me chilly. I'm sure your horses appreciate the break from routine. And taking a break from a completed manuscript can be very helpful.

  2. I went through three rounds of edits on my first completed MS. I started my second WIP but got stuck on more revisions for the first with a bevy of rejections flooding my inbox.

    I am on a break from it now and am reading TONS of books.

    I just opened up my second WIP and am refreshed. Breaks are needed and sometimes moving onto something else is too.

  3. Get off yer ass and quit lollygaggin around! Cowgirl up and send me the next chapter of A Real Bad Burn to crit already! If everything is finished and you're editing away - start outlining your next MS. Have your crit partners do some butchering for you. That's what we're here for. I have to admit the almost 2 wks I took off of writing was very refreshing for me. Why not read and watch some movies for a while to fill up your creative void? But, I'm ready for ARBB when you are!

  4. Hey D'Ann. I'm on a hiatus from writing. I was just forcing myself and nothing good was coming of it...I would sit and stare at the computer screen and turn it off feeling defeated. It's been like this for a few months now, but this time I'm actually not writing anything, or editing, or revising. Just enjoying my time with my kids and hubby. I'll get back to it, but I have discovered I can't force it...I actually wrote about the same thing on my blog yesterday...It's been pretty cold here too, I just wish winter would hurry up instead of pissing around!

  5. Breaks are needed and deserved. Writing is tough. Editing is a killer. The only thing is is don't allow too much time to pass before you start again. If after a couple of months and you still don't have the urge to write, try rereading over one of your MS's to get back into the story. This usually helps me get back into writing.
    But one thing I do know is never feel guilty because you are taking a break.

  6. I took a break of several months to finish up my college degree in English Literature. My publisher breathed down my neck the whole time. But after writing lots of non-fiction for school, I got an assignment to write a short story for a class. Fiction! Now I'm out of school and incredibly energized. Taking a break is healthy. If you can't write fiction, or can't write a novel, maybe you can write something else! Keep yer chin up!

  7. I try to start work every morning around 5 a.m. when it's really quiet here and no one else is up yet. It gets me going. Then if I have to quit later and do other things, I don't feel guilty.

  8. We all need breaks. And they are good for us. I can usually tell when I need one because the ideas just don't flow. That's when I turn off my computer and read a few books. Reading has always been the fuel for my creative fire. Usually, I start thinking about my own stories half-way through a book. And not only the one I am currently working on.

    For example, I just finished two vampire books by two of my favorite vamp writers... And I'm thinking that, after I'm finished with my current WIP, I just might take a peek at my first MS and see if I can make a Nocturne out of it...LOL

    Yes, I said it was dead and buried on my hard drive, never to see light of day, or night, again...but it is a vampire story, and vamps have a tendancy of not staying in the grave.

  9. You've hit it on the head. This is exactly how I felt after completing WYOMING DREAMER. Almost exhausted. Didn't care to write anything. Now that I'm on to #2, I'm kind of in the pasture and out. Work at it gung-ho until I hit a snag and then days go back with nothing. And I do believe you can force yourself and nothing good come out of it. If anything,I'm glad to know others have the same experiences. At least I don't feel so alone.

  10. I hate winter, too. All that cold just isn't right. I know how you feel, and it can be a good thing. Take time to decompress, in the end you'll be much better for it. :-)

  11. I think sometimes you just need to take some time to recharge and then when you're ready, your muse will return.