Monday, April 17, 2017

Time to Reboot

Yesterday we celebrated Easter dinner with family, and the theme of new beginnings and a fresh start stuck with me.

These past few months haven't been the greatest confidence boosters for authors. I've seen many peers who've reached the point of being so discouraged by the current state of the industry, they are thinking about calling it quits. Or they have called it quits already. It's definitely been the "winter" for many careers.

Let's face it. For a majority of authors, the state of the industry is pretty dismal. Well known small and medium-sized presses have closed, big book selling venues have closed, and it's becoming harder and harder to find ways to reach readers and get reviews.

The end result is that it's much more difficult to make a living than it was eight or ten, or heck, even five years ago, and it's getting more difficult even to pay expenses, for most authors.

Many of us have been waiting for an "industry adjustment" that never came, and sadly, may not ever come. Truthfully, we probably shouldn't be counting on a miracle fix to set things right.

The other day I was trying to show a friend a video of one of our horses on my cell phone, and it simple refused to load. After getting really frustrated, David asked, "Have you rebooted it, lately?" Rebooted my phone? Well, no. It's pretty much on all the time.

So he shut it down for a few minutes and then turned it back on. Voila! Video instantly available! Whatever technological cobwebs had been clogging up the works had been cleared away just with the simple act of shutting down and restarting.

That's when I realized--Hey, maybe I'm due for reboot, myself. The cobwebs are really starting to get thick all up in there.

So I'm going to take some time--a week, two weeks, a month--to step back from writing and do some physical and mental spring cleaning. I plan to thoroughly strip down and reorganize my home office and while I'm at it, I'm going to reorganize my head and send my muse off on a tropical vacation.

My mental universe could do with some splashes of color and a lot more fresh air. For me, writing needs to become the great adventure it once was, and I need to rediscover my enthusiasm.

I'll write a follow-up in one of my future blogs.

Have a great week.



17 comments:

  1. Well-timed post, Laurie! Thanks for letting other writers know we're not alone.
    Laurel

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  2. Thanks, Laurel. I think a lot of authors are experiencing the same frustrations right now. I'm hoping my "reboot" will at give me some fresh energy to tackle a few projects.

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  3. Although I'm not a writer, I can still relate to the space you're inhabiting right now. This is coincidentally Day 1 of my self-driven motivational rescue, which happily aligns with your inspirational and encouraging post. Thanks, Laurie, and best wishes for your success.

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    1. Thanks so much, Merry. :) And best wishes with your motivational rescue. I think we all need a little course adjustment from time-to-time to keep us on track.

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  4. I know exactly how you feel. I think I'm just beginning to come out the other side of my burn out and back to actually enjoying writing (though it's taken almost a year since my last release) and even reading a bit. The break will definitely do you good.

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    1. Thanks, Pippa. I hope I'll be able to come back to it with refreshed enthusiasm and new energy. I'm glad you're feeling enthused again and hope you're squarely back in the saddle now. :)

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  5. I can relate. I'm not rebooting as much as I'm redirecting myself.

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    1. Thanks, Cara! Some redirection can be a very good thing, too. I know your new release has kept you busy. :)

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  6. I'm in the same situation, as you know. I've pulled right back from the writing business, and I know other friends have done the same. We'll see what happens further down the track.

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    1. There seem to be a number of authors calling it quits and I wonder if that in itself will serve as a sort of "industry adjustment." Time will tell. Hope things are looking up for you soon, Greta.

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  7. This. Exactly. It probably would have helped if I'd meant to pull back and reboot instead of getting into such a funk I just slowed to a crawl. Hope your *conscious* break helps. (I don't recommend the depressed slump, though.)

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    1. Thanks, Teresa. Yes, I've definitely experienced the "depressed slump" end of it, too. I think the break will help reset my creativity clock, but we'll see...

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  8. I went through several weeks of no motivation. I just got back from a trip to Hawaii with my daughter, and I feel refreshed. I hope your tropical holiday, even if just virtual, works for you!

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    1. Oh, wow! Hawaiian vacation. You did me one better than sending my muse off to the tropics. *sigh* I so miss Kauaii. One of these years, we'll get back. Hope you had a wonderful time. Which island did you visit?

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    2. Oops. That's Kauai, not Kauaii. It's been so long since I spelled it, I'm adding vowels.

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    3. We went to Oahu. We had an AMAZING time. Also released my mom's ashes while there.

      I went to Kauaii ... 17 years go, GULP. Loved it too.

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