When procrastination is something else

Here’s a secret: procrastination is always something else. It’s a sign of something bigger that’s going on in the writer-brain, and it’s up to you to figure out what.

That’s what’s been gnawing at me for the past few weeks. Last week I posted about being “almost done” with my book–as much as any book can ever be called “done”–but my progress has slowed. Sure, that can be attributed to my current level of life craziness, but it’s not entirely that. There have been plenty of opportunities for me to write. I’ve just … chosen not to. And I finally figured out why.

I’m worried about letting this one go.

I think the current WIP is pretty good. It’s definitely the best book I’ve written. The world excites me, the characters are fun, and all I want to do it start writing the next book so I can see what happens. I want to dive into back story, keep building the world, and learn the hidden motivations characters have. This world and its characters inspire me so much. Yet I don’t want to send them out into the wild because I’m afraid that agents won’t love it as much as I do. Or if by some miracle one does, I’m afraid editors won’t. I’m afraid it will languish and will become just another book on my hard drive. It doesn’t matter that I’ve been assured this project will sell; deep down I’m petrified it won’t.

So I don’t work on it. If it’s never done, it can’t be rejected, right? And it can always just be this awesome thing I wrote.

Here’s the rub. That’s not good enough. First and foremost, I want my words to be read. I want readers to be entertained by my stories. I want to do school visits and sign books and enjoy my stories through my reader’s eyes. And I can only do that if I stop letting my fear control my actions.


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