Jump into the way back machine with me kiddies to 7th grade Health class. Our teacher Mrs Millspaugh is talking about puberty — and while infinitely fascinating the thing that sticks with me the most is the talk about growth spurts. She says — in that deadpan way that only Sex Ed Teachers can — that some people experience growth spurts so quick and vigorous that their limbs actually shake and burn. I skipped this part physically, but apparently not mentally.
I’m currently going through a writing growth spurt. Or should I say another one. I recognize the signs — I’m mentally jittery, can’t stand to look at my current WIPS and the thought of starting a new shiny makes me want to set something on fire. I have the unshakable thought that whatever I bother to write today, will be completely outclassed by what I will write three weeks from now; and if it’s on the same project it will be like running through pudding backwards up hill to try to edit the sucker into one coherent piece.
This will be the third time this has happened to me in the last 13 months. On one hand, this is good. The writer I am after the spurt is that much closer to being a Good Writer. It feels incredibly indulgent and stupid to whine about this, but it’s painful. I have no idea how long it will last, or how successful I will be at making myself tough it out. I’ve gone from 1300 -2500 word count days to 0 – 500 word days. I’ve gone from pushing myself to write on the current WIP because I’m dying to get to the next to avoiding my computer because I feel guilty I can’t seem to write. If Mrs. M and my past experiences are to be believed, I will just have to suck it up and see what happens.
Please tell me I’m not the only one. Or at least offer me a silver lining.
***I don’t know if there is an actual Restless Writer Syndrome. I refused to Google for it. So if you are here as part of the Restless Writer Syndrome Collective and you want to take me to task for getting the details wrong, get in line. I probably should have mentioned that RWS makes me irritable and mean.