When the Glow Wears Off

Two and a  half weeks ago Jessica and I returned from our fabulous Willamette Writers Conference with smiles on our faces and eager to go forth and write. What happens to our projects after the glow wears off? One of us hit a gigantic malaise and the other has busied herself with friends, shopping, and television gawking blahs, anything to avoid our plans to write.

We came home exhausted but enthused. So why this foggy phase? It reminds me about the let down after a holiday or vacation: the ubiquitous anti climax. The problem for us is we aren’t taking the needed respite from words, characters, and plot with grace. The “to do’s” hang over us regardless of what our mouths repeat to each other: “You need a break,” Your enthusiasm will return soon enough,” You’ve earned time away. It’s a good thing!” We intellectually believe these statements are correct in withdrawing, but, emotionally we allow guilt to hover .

I have a friend, Greg Warburton, who has written an amazing book out this October about ways to move kids into adulthood. One of his many strategies is to ask a client, (this time me), “How long are you going to continue this choice?” OK, Greg, I will give myself until September 1! Oh, now I can relax and take a deep breath.

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