I wrote one sentence today.
Believe it or not, I am more proud of that one sentence than I am of the previous 8,000 words or so I have written in the third book in the Echo Falls trilogy.
In the beginning of May, I was taken into the hospital for emergency appendix surgery. A recovery that should have taken a week or two stretched out to about six weeks, thanks to complications. Winter arrived, end of term tests and papers hit. I had a lot of support and understanding from my teachers, but I still had work to do. The winter blues, more commonly known as SAD, hit with a vengence, and I found myself terrified of writing a single word. I had to spend so much energy on remembering to eat and shower that I didn’t have the strength to face even the weakest of my writing fears.
I am not the first author to deal with depression and anxiety, and I certainly won’t be the last. So why write about it?
Whether you are aspiring or published, it is easy to get caught up in the news of and feel intimidated by the authors who can churn out thousands of words per day. I know. I do. But, in the end, you need to do what you can do. Yes, challenge yourself. No, do not let yourself get lazy. Always keep learning about your craft.
But don’t compare yourself to other authors. In that path, misery waits.
Whether you are dealing with depression, classes, work, a combination or a big laundry list: you are unique. No one has a life just like yours, so how can you expect anyone – including yourself – to live to someone else’s schedule?
It’s a big ask, but be proud of what you can do and of what you are trying to do. That is all that really matters, after all.