Sunday, June 13, 2010

Separation Anxiety

Everyone must go through this. Perhaps I have more problems mentally switching gears than most. But still, I did not anticipate it would be this hard.

I typed out THE END on the rough draft of my novel this week, and promised myself at least thirty days away to clear my head and get a clean perspective before revising.

How long will the aching last? How long will I have to shout at my creative output center to shut up already, we are not adding that scene? That, yes, the conflict in chapter twenty-one is off and the protagonist needs better motives for what happened in chapter eight, but I will deal with it later? Thirty days, brain. That's all I'm asking. It's not too much.

I am having trouble letting go. Three months would be ideal, but I don't know if I can stay away that long. I am seriously doubting my ability to commit to the one month separation.

This is what a kindergartner must feel when Mom drops them off on their first day. I'm the sulky kid who sits in the corner, thumb in mouth, refusing to interact except to cry that I wanna go home. The artist easels and play kitchen do not entice me at all.

But I know they'd be fun if I only got off my butt and turned those plastic oven dials, dipped into that paint. So I'm moving on to another project, moving play food from the oven to the fridge, donning that artist smock, and grabbing the paint brush. So what if I can only act out how my mom makes sandwiches? So what if every painting I slap up is a picture of my house? I'm just going to plow through until I'm a restaurant chef, and my pictures are of dinosaurs and unicorns.

I have a feeling I'm going to waste a lot of paper getting there.

Do you suffer from separation anxiety when you move on to something new? How hard is it to mentally shelve a project, temporarily or permanently?

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