If I sat down to count how many times I’ve felt overwhelmed, discouraged, or altogether reluctant to continue pursuing a goal, I probably wouldn’t be able to count all of them. You probably wouldn’t either. Not because it never happens. Quite the contrary, it happens way too often to keep count. Sometimes it is our own self-doubt as writers, which takes us to the place where all negative thoughts live. Sometimes it is the negative criticism of others, or their complete indifference to our efforts. Whatever the reason, the end result is the same. We withdraw from our projects and throw in the towel.
This happened to me this week. After crossing the halfway point in my novel revision, I realized there is a major structural issue I have to fix. I don’t want to. In fact, all I want to do is close my eyes and wish it gone. But I am no witch. The words won’t rearrange themselves just because I want them to. And no fairy godmother is coming to my aid. I have to put in the work, even if I don’t think I can do it.
It is so easy, almost effortless to fall into the vicious cycle of defeat. Well, it is time to stop it. It is time to say, no, I won’t give in. Not this time, Bucko. (Bucko being our own pessimistic thoughts, of course.) Otherwise, we’ll get nowhere, and regret will hit us in the head once more. I gave my word I would work on my novel and try my best to finish the darn thing by the end of the year. I have three and a half weeks left and thirteen chapters to go.
There is a mountain of frustration piling up at my front door and a pessimistic monster trying to pull me down. But I am going to stand my ground. You should, too. Whenever you feel like giving up, don’t. Stick to your guns. After all, at the end this is the only thing keeping us from quitting.
Current word count: 111,631.