Monday, August 6, 2018

Brain Dump

Hello, and welcome back to my blog. I've been trying to write a "professional" blog post for the past week, but I haven't gotten anywhere, so here is a raw brain dump of what I've been thinking over the summer.

For those wondering, I did not finish Camp NaNoWriMo, but I did write 30,000 words (exactly) in July and figured out the direction in which to take Daniel and Varina, two of my oldest and most beloved characters. 
I was hoping that Camp NaNoWriMo would motivate me to be creative again, but August has come and I feel discouraged again. Since editing my fantasy novel (you know the one), I have been struggling with who my audience is. Since I started writing semi-seriously, my books have featured adult characters, but I have heard from multiple people that my writing style is more suited for middle grade readers. This makes sense as many of my favorite stories are middle grade novels. These books shaped who I am and made me want to be an author. I would love to inspire people like Sharon Creech, Erin Hunter, Eva Ibbotson, and Jeanne Birdsall inspired me.
That's hard, however, because, in college, I am learning to write literary fiction, which is alien to my natural style. It's good to learn, of course, but it also makes me question whether I am a good writer if I can't write literarily. 

I've never had an audience for my writing. When I was younger, I wrote because I enjoyed it. I liked exploring my imagination, but I've lost some of that whimsy since becoming an adult. If I am to be a full-time author, that means that I have to have an audience, but I don't. I don't have a specific age group that I write for, but I can't write just for fun anymore because I feel like I am wasting time... like I need to be doing something better. I guess writing isn't as fulfilling as it used to be, not to mention that college has sucked away my creativity and time, which makes it hard to do much of anything in what little free time I have.
Which brings me to blogging. I love blogging, and I love reading all of your blogs, but I am so brain dead from homework during the school year that it's so so so hard for me to keep up with a blogging schedule no matter how much planning I put into it. Maybe if I had more willpower, things would be different. I also feel like my posts have to be witty and happy and meet a certain standard of writing, but I don't always have interesting things to post about, or extra brainpower to make the words flow well, or even happiness to pour into a post.

I don't know where I am headed in life. Right now, I lack motivation, confidence, and passion, which makes it hard to do anything, especially if that something is creative. 
That being said, I will be participating in a few blog tours and also the Silmarillion Awards in the next month, so look out for those exciting things!
I don't know where this blog is heading in the future, but I wanted to say that I value everyone that I've meet through the blogging community. You all mean a lot to me, even though I don't always post or comment or keep up with you very well. 
Anyway, that's my brain dump. Maybe since I've gotten those thoughts out of the way, I can start to post more interesting things again. 


  1. It's good to hear from you, Abbey- professional sounding isn't necessary! I can relate to some degree. I've accepted that I won't be writing a thrilling YA trilogy anytime soon.... though I have some great ideas simmering. But different times and seasons of life ask different things of us. I've taken a break from blogging, but maybe in the future I'll come back with a new blog or new ideas. Enjoy this season of life! And yes, brain dumps can be very helpful :)

    1. Thanks for your comment, Becca :) You are right about different seasons of life. It is so hard to be in a season of waiting/uncertainty. Sometimes, I think it would be better to know the future so that I wouldn't have to face so much uncertainty anymore. Anyway, thank you for the comment; it is a good reminder for me.

  2. It's good to hear from you!

    Just as a note of encouragement, I did ZERO writing for fun when I was in college. The authoring-type writing I did was over the summers... and even that took a motivational kick in the pants and a monetary bribe from my dad! College doesn't leave a lot of room for writing and blogging, and that's okay. It's a season.

    College also likes to tell you HOW to do things. That doesn't necessarily mean that's how those things HAVE to be done. Writing literarily isn't for everyone... and thankfully, READING literarily isn't for everyone either.

    Finding your audience is a good exercise to work through, and I'm sure you'll figure it out! I write for a younger audience, but I don't neatly fit into the "all my characters have to be the same age as my audience" mold. A lot of my most avid readers are between the ages of 10-12... but my characters are by-and-large all over the age of 18... so, while character age can be a good metric for determining reader age... it's not always a perfect test.

    Don't fall into the trap of thinking your writing and posts have to be a certain tone or feel. On your blog, the most important thing is to be authentic. Let us know when you're feeling down, or unmotivated, or tired, or lack passion.... chances are, some of us are dealing with those same things, and we need to hear that we're not alone... we need to come up under each other's arms and pray and hold each other up until we can once again stand on our own. Don't be afraid to be real, here, Abbey. We love you, and we're here to listen, empathize, and pray with you.

    1. Jenelle, thank you so much. Your comment was so encouraging for me to read this morning! Like you and Becca said, this is a season in my life. It will eventually be over. It is good to hear about your writing-in-college experience... Sometimes, it seems like I always have to do everything—homework, writing, blogging, socializing, working, eating—all the time to the best of my ability, but that's impossible. But I guess it doesn't mean that I will never be a part of the blogging community ever again. I guess it just means that right now, I do not have the ability to be as present as I want to be, and that is okay.
      It's good to hear about your experience with audience, too. It's nice to know that audience and character age don't always have to line up. That's what you always hear, but I guess, like the thing about literary reading/writing, you don't always have to follow "the rules." Learn them in order to break them, eh?
      Gosh, Jenelle, your comment has just made my morning. Thank you so much for your words!! I appreciate you a lot :)

    2. You are most welcome! I'm glad I could help encourage you :)

  3. 30,000 words is nothing to sniff at! That's awesome, in fact!! :D And I love your brain dumps! Just hearing about your life and how you're doing is so nice. <33