I’ve pretty much always known I wanted to be a writer. I feel edgy and off kilter if I’m not writing regularly. And for most of my adult life, I’ve been writing almost daily. But about two years ago, after writing 20+ books, I hit a wall. The words were coming more and more slowly, and the effort it took to produce those few words was becoming more and more painful.
I was constantly under contract to write, and I had always loved writing, so wasn’t this a good thing? Most writers would say it was a downright excellent, wonderful, amazing thing, to have someone else paying me to write. It is. It was. And yet, something was terribly wrong. I was experiencing creative burnout.
Rather than push on and perhaps make myself forever hate writing, I decided I needed to take a break. This was one of the scariest things I’ve ever done in my life. I worked so hard and so long to become a published author, and I was terrified that if I walked away from my career, it wouldn’t be there for me when I came back. But there didn’t seem to be any other choice. I had reached a point where I was under so much stress I couldn’t write.
I decided to try something totally different that I’d also always wanted to do–teaching. So I went to graduate school, studied special education, and spent the past year teaching special ed at a local high school. It was a relief to have a break from my writing life, and yet, it always feels as if a piece of me is missing when I’m not writing. I’d occasionally give it a try during the past two years, but it hasn’t been until a few months ago that the words have started coming to me again in more than just fits and starts.
I don’t want to jinx myself by saying too much, but I am writing again. Yay. It’s so nice to have that part of myself back.