Woke up yesterday from a nap and realized certain ongoing feels probably indicated I was depressed.
* an ongoing feeling of ‘why bother’ faced with most things. (I often go on to bother, because I have a sun– I mean son.)
* a sense of instability and emotional fragility, as if the least crisis would break me. (I actually think changing how I sleep is nibbling the edge off this feeling.)
* an increase in morbid thoughts and stresses.
After that stellar self-diagnosis, I immediately took steps toward self-treatment, because even depression doesn’t stop my tendency toward decisive impulsive actions, thank you ADHD. And I thought that my problem was mild enough thateven placebo action could help.
This morning I woke up sufficienly detatched from myself that I could further identify my general state of mind these days: It’s going to be a lot of work and then I’m going to fail.
And more importantly, I could suddenly once again remember that I hadn’t always felt that way. I could remember a little of what I used to feel like when I didn’t assume failure was the inevitable end state of all my efforts. Exhilarating! Also kind of a confirmation of my self-diagnosis.
I hope I can remember!
Just as I did last time I made progress on a NaNoWriMo project, I’m keeping what I’m working on mostly a secret. I can’t quite remember why I did last time, other than to not lose momentum, and that’s certainly a factor here. But there’s also something else going on: I’m embarrassed by it. I’m reasonably certain that almost everybody I know will think it’s kind of stupid. If I finish it, I’m sure I’ll talk about it then, but as a work in progress, my faith in it is pretty fragile.
In fact, I also think it’s stupid. I’m usually pretty good at self-analysis, but in this case I’m really not sure why I’m pretty intently working on something that I think is both dumb and unpublishable. Is it just a form of self-infatuation? Is it just easier to work on what I have than try to come up with yet another possible project? Do I ever love something starting out? Or do I just come up with a plan, and doggedly follow it until I have something complete and pretty okay?
I don’t know. I guess that isn’t a terrible way to be. Although I think it’d be better to have a brilliant inspiration, follow it doggedly, and end up with something I consider fantastic and a surefire bestseller.
It’s not that I don’t have brilliant inspirations. I have a lot of images I love floating around in my head. But I have trouble fleshing them out into a story that really fulfills my vision. It’s like how the boy you have a crush on isn’t quite the same as the boy belching on the couch. I don’t want Victoria or 10 Lonely Angels to belch!
So I guess maybe I’m aiming low again? Citadel of the Sky was definitely aiming low, while Matchbox Girls was a serious effort. But both were meant to be quick stories. I promised myself my next project would be something I’d be happy to spend 2 years writing on purpose. And I think this fulfills that promise, even if I do HOPE I’ll have something to show before 2 years are up.
So I’m ready to spend two years working on something I think is dumb?
But it won’t be dumb in the end. Or at least, it’ll be good and dumb!
PS: I can confide in this blog because I firmly believe that only one person I talk to regularly actually reads this blog anymore, and he’s very discreet. Everybody else just relies on Facebook. Shh! Our secret!
I’m falling further behind, but I’ve been working hard. I’ve made things complicated for myself, as usual, so I spend time each day writing words I don’t count even if they’re part of the same project, and revising my previous novel, and knitting. Day by day, stitch by stitch, word by word, I really do feel like I’m making something.
It’s rare, too, that I feel ok about the amount of work I’ve done. I may sometimes be happy with the quality of work I do but I am almost never happy with the quantity. I could always be working harder. But I feel pretty good about today and yesterday, even though I’m behind.
I’d still like to catch up, though. I have an evidence-based fear that if I’m going to stop at 50k words or the end of November, whichever comes first. In this case, stopping at 50k words should be fine, since I’ve carefully planned out how to fill the wordcount perfectly. But if I lose steam because the pressure of NaNoWriMo is over, I’ll have loose ends, and that would be sad.
I wrote a 2000 word outline for roughly 6000 words of future story today. Apparently my method for doing that kind of detailed outline is a first-person narration. The sort of narration somebody who isn’t a very good storyteller might give in a conversation. Whatever works, although I’m a bit concerned that it’s kind of dull and introspective. Maybe that’s just a living example of ‘show not tell’?
Now I’m sitting up knitting and decompressing. Robin didn’t fall asleep until 12:30, despite a bedtime of 10. Tomorrow I need to write another 2000 words of outline and I still won’t be caught up! Because that’s how crazy NaNoWriMo is.