HAS IT ALL CAUGHT UP WITH YOU?
You're in good company:
Mark Twain's brilliant authorship of American classics such as Huckleberry Finn might have had its roots in his tendency to depression. But this famous depressed writer also lived with a lot of family drama that could have contributed to his stressand depression.
Depression's role with creative writing will also be a function of the individual writers, their personal history, their circumstances, and the nature of their depressions.
Stephen King, a modern master of suspense and terror, has quite a body of work to his name. Yet his fame and talent didn't forestall the devastating effects of the drugs and alcohol he allegedly had been using to cope with ongoing unhappiness.
Substance abuse and alcohol use often play roles as people struggling with depression attempt to self-medicate. During those years, this famous depressed writer also produced some of his best-known works, such as The Shining, Pet Sematary, and Carrie.
F. Scott Fitzgerald
F. Scott Fitzgerald and his wife Zelda were known for their glamorous and tumultuous lifestyle, full of wild parties, travel, and larger-than-life characters.
The Great Gatsby remains his best-known work, but other novels such as The Beautiful and the Damned detail a lot of the same ground. Their glittering life had a dark side, punctuated by alcoholism and depression for both of them, and their legacy includes being famous depressed writers.
HOW DO YOU KEEP ON WRITING DESPITE FEAR, DOUBT, & SELF-CRITICISM?
1.) ASK YOURSELF WHAT YOU WOULD DO IF YOU'RE WEREN'T AFRAID OR DOUBTFUL.
The mere act of doing usually makes the fear recede in just a few minutes.” Pretend, just for a moment, that rejection or failure isn’t the end of life as you know it.
2.) STOP INDULGING YOUR FEARS, DISCOURAGEMENTS, REJECTIONS, & DASHED DREAMS.
Much as we’re driven to write, we feel we must be in the mood – as if the clouds should part, the sun should shine and every possible interruption should be silenced.
None of that matters. Write anyway. Don’t think about how you feel or if it’s a perfect time to write or that you have a thousand other things to do. Write anyway. You have nothing to share and nothing to sell if there are no words on the page.
3.) REMEMBER THAT REJECTION ISN'T NECESSARILY ABOUT YOUR WRITING.
You have to be totally dedicated to your writing. Forget about rejections – they’re a mandatory part of any career.
A writer writes.
If you feel you’ll keep writing even if you never get published, then you’re a real writer.
The markets want they want. Tastes will change. You will grow as a writer if you do not give up.
4.) SEE PAST YOUR EXCUSES TO YOUR REAL FEARS
Writers need to look at their fears directly. “Recognize them for what they are, and be honest with yourself about why you’re not moving forward with your writing goals.
This can be difficult because we give excuses rather than facing our fears.
5.) SET SMALL GOALS
Long-term goals are great for inspiration, but keep a list of small, attainable goals, too, and allow yourself to feel proud when you achieve them.
Reward yourself for finishing a chapter or short story.
Recognize that sending a few query letters to agents takes time, thought, and effort, and don’t discount the success.