Four years ago, my writing want-to burned down to the faintest of glimmers of my former passion. What I didn’t know was that moment of “I can’t do this anymore” exhaustion would bring me to today: the launch day for my debut novel, Wish You Were Here.
In the early days of burnout, what I couldn’t do weighed me down. I avoided my office. Yes, I met my writing and editing deadlines, but I didn’t pursue new assignments. Why would I? I was never, ever, ever going to write again.
The advantage of grinding to a halt? I looked up from my keyboard and asked myself a few questions:
- Why am I burned out? In the pursuit of a career, I’d said yes to everything without evaluating the consequences of the never-ending yes.
- What am I going to do about it? I could continue to beat a dead horse (me) or stop, catch my breath and re-evaluate.
- Do I want to keep writing? I gave myself the freedom to walk away from writing. Saying “no more” was a legitimate choice.
The answer to that last question was a no … and a yes.
And that was the beauty of burnout.
I allowed myself to say no to what I had been doing — editing and writing nonfiction — and embrace something new: writing inspirational contemporary romance.
Burnout became an unexpected bend in the road to a whole new writing adventure. Who knew? Burnout — it’s a wonderful thing.
In Your Words: How has a dream come true for you in an unexpected way?
I’m involved with The Debs, several other romance writers with May debuts.Dani Pettrey’s Submerged and Olivia Newport’s The Pursuit of Lucy Banning also debut today. Katie Ganshert’s Wildflowers from Winter debuts May 8th. Join us on May 15 for our Debutantes’ Story Soiree: a live, worldwide online party to celebrate our debuts and also learn more about Heart of the Bride, a nonprofit ministry devoted to meeting the needs of orphans worldwide.