Someone wanted to know if I was “burnt out.” See, I spent two years writing and publishing non-stop and now for the past eight months, I’ve written nothing except for a couple articles. Correction: I’ve published nothing except for a couple articles. I’ve written plenty- a novel here, a half-finished novel there, and a poetry collection I’ve been hemming and hawing over because “how honest do I really want to be with people?”
And I’ve figured it out.
When I first started publishing my work almost three years ago, I was hurting. I’d just broken up with my boyfriend, I found out I wasn’t going to be able to afford university, and this glittering life I’d allowed myself to believe in for a nanosecond was crashing down. So, like I’ve always tended to do, I wrote out my frustrations. I wrote out my pains and my dreams and my failures and somehow, all that nonsense turned into a full-fledged novel. Which turned into a trilogy and a few poetry collections because yeah… writing is how I process everything.
That was year one. That was the year I stopped the bleeding, slapped on a few band-aids, took a breath, and moved on. Then came year two.
Year two was surgery. Year two was digging old shrapnel out of wounds I didn’t know I had. It was the year I climbed the pull-down ladder to the attic, dusted off painful moments and memories I had boxed up and hid, and finally dealt with them.
That was the Banewood year. That’s when my speaking voice and writing voice finally differed and my brother finally read my books. That’s when words flowed, holes were patched up, and each book left me excited for the next one. Admittedly, it took me awhile to realize that, with each book I wrote, a new injury was being unwrapped and brought to life to be properly sewn up and healed. But I eventually figured that out and while I was left with a little trepidation as to what would come next, I continued on with my storytelling and emerged on the other side feeling more whole than I had in a long time. Which brings me to today.
Present Day: My dirty laundry has been aired. My house has been emptied and cleaned and now it’s time to decorate. Only like with real decorating, it’s not as simple as going out and buying just any old lamp. You’re not just decorating a house; you’re building a home and I want my home to be beautiful. Which is why I wrote a novel and then tossed it, only to repeat steps one and two a few months later. That’s why I have a completed poetry collection that I could technically release, but it feels too much like a paint color I haven’t quite decided on yet.
I’m in the decorating process with my writing and I want to make something beautiful. More than that, I want to make something honest, but after years of keeping my heart guarded, opening up and being that honest is, well, terrifying. But I’d like to get there. It’s going to take time- just like leveling the pavers in the garden takes time- but I’ll get there.
Until then, just know that I’m still writing. Know that I’m not burnt out; I could never be burnt out of writing when it’s a piece of my soul. Just know that I’m decorating. And know that, as soon as I’m done decorating, when everything is in order, I’ll invite you over for a dinner party and we’ll have a marvelous time.