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note to self: i’ll be there for you, always

written june 6, 2021. Photo by Kristine Cinate on Unsplash I have always looked for myself in other people. I think the idea was that they would somehow hold the pieces of me that I felt were missing. That maybe, if I wrapped my identity up in theirs enough, we would somehow make a whole person. It's not healthy to live like this, but I did it anyway — burning through relationships and searching for something I couldn't quite name. It was never enough, not to be myself, but it was never enough to latch my identity to other people, either. I got close, several times — I thought I had reached the pinnacle of self discovery. I thought I had completed myself. But in the end, relying on other people to help build yourself is never a viable way to do things. It's only recently that I've started to become comfortable with the idea of being enough, as I am, on my own. Several years ago, in this same position, I would have searched for another person to attach my identity onto,

in which Corruption’s plot becomes corrupted.

The faces that make up Corruption, one of my latest projects.
Someday, they'll become brave enough to let me introduce them to you.

A lot has been up in the air with regards to my writing as of late.

In short, I'm not doing Camp NaNo. Yet.

August is the lucky charm, baby. 

No, in all seriousness, I've been struggling with writing. The words won't come. I'm struggling with self-doubt. And wondering big, BIG questions such as, "What is it that I am called to write?"

I've always been very versatile with genres. I've written stuff that can only be defined as "chick-lit." I've written something that was some kind of weird suspense-novel-thing. I've written fantasy, which I love. But I have all these plots inside my head that don't fit inside these genres. Dystopic plots, plots about superheroes, plots about where the world has gone all wrong. Plots with guns and spaceships and hovercrafts. Plots with time travel and sunflowers and distant memories.

The problem is, I stink at writing sci-fi. More aptly, I don't know how to write sci-fi. When it comes to shows, I love it. I love watching things like Star Trek. I was practically raised on Star Trek. And more recently, I've been working my way through Doctor Who. I love the stars, the ships, the star captains, the intrigue. I do love it.

But I don't know how to write it.

This recently came to my attention when Corruption's plot completely fell apart. Two days before June's edition of Camp NaNo was supposed to begin.

It. Was. Insane.

I don't even know how to describe the emotions that went through me. I had a plot. I had thirteen beautiful chapters of semi-outlined material and then it... just... vanished.

Well, not exactly. I will admit that there were some events leading up to the sudden Vanishing of My Plot. I'd been struggling with a scene that involved a hovercraft chase and then fighting on foot. I personally think I stink at writing contemporary or futuristic combat scenes. Swords, I like. I don't know much about them, but I can muddle through writing a duel well enough. As for guns... well, it's not that I don't like them. I just don't know anything about them. And I had no idea how to get my main characters out of the situation they were currently in. Outnumbered. In a desert with three guys on their trail. With a broken down hovercraft. Oh, and did I mention that one of the characters was in a wheelchair?

So there was a bit of foreshadowing leading up to the sudden Vanishing of My Plot. It's just that when it did vanish, it was abrupt, unexpected, and well... sudden. Not to mention untimely. Thirteen chapters of my outline were now scrapped because I took the time to poke a stick at my plot.
As the Doctor says, "There is something here that doesn't make sense… Let's go poke it with a stick!" I didn't expect my plot to completely collapse when I did so. Whatever sense my plot did have soon escaped like air oozing out of a deflated balloon. Normally I'd try to work around it, but I'd made it several choices that completely changed the flavor of the book and the way I wanted this novel to be. I need time to get it back to the way it was, and two days wasn't nearly enough.

There are a plethora of other reasons why I won't be attempting June NaNo. I've been struggling with inspiration for a while now, and I guess that the only thing I can do is take a break. If I tried to write now, it would just create more frustration.

Not only that, but I prayed about it, and I felt God telling me to aim for August. Add to that some relational and emotional stress, and I wasn't sure I could write at all. It's a good thing too because when June began, the aforementioned emotional stress intensified. These emotions, ironically enough, are similar to ones that Elleri experiences in Corruption's plot, though I didn't plan it at the time.  My plot collapsing was just the icing on the cake. As I've been thinking all week, Corruption's plot is now corrupted. :P

So I'm taking some time off. To think... pray... recover... heal. I've actually been getting inspiration for other projects like Silver Tears (which still needs a good ending) and Souvenirs (which I've deemed my two-year-trouble-child). I was surprised when inspiration for Souvenirs started to appear, as it's been a difficult project for nearly all of its existence.

My inspiration is returning. It's just taking its own sweet time.

I may end up finishing Silver Tears in July. Or I may need to wait and let my inspiration return. Hopefully by August, I'll feel up to writing this story. Or maybe another. After all, August may just be the lucky charm. (I certainly hope so!)


  1. I may not be a pro...but sounds like you need a break. Go live, Doctor's orders. This is what you need to do, take every paper, stuff it in the bottom of a desk. You may leave stationary out for writing letters if you need too. Also, if everything is on M.Word, but them all in a folder, and put it hidden away in your computer. Now, once all that is done, go learn something new. Can you skate? Read 3 books you think you'll hate, and see if you still do. Watch old tv shows, like Lost in Space. Go dance in the rain. FORGET you are a writer for a little while. Sometimes we push ourselves to hard, and our brains protest. You have to make sure your characters aren't the only ones with lives, K?


    1. Ah, yes! Good advice, my dear Ashley. (The Doctor's orders... of course, my brain went straight to Doctor Who. If you know the Doctor, that elusive Time Lord from Gallifrey, please introduce me to him. Pleasepleaseplease. K, thanks.)

      So that's basically what I've been trying to do. Ha, I probably couldn't skate to save my life, but I LOVE all your suggestions. The three books one is brilliant. Lost in Space? I'm ashamed to admit I've never heard of it... I SHALL DANCE IN THE RAIN AT MY EARLIEST CONVENIENCE. Thank you! And that's the trouble, isn't it? It's so very hard to FORGET that we are writers. That's the problem I'm having right now.

      But what you've said -- everything you've said -- is so true. My characters have lives, but I need one too. I once saw a quote that said something like, "How foolish it is to sit down to write when one has not stood up to live." (I'm paraphrasing, of course.) It's a good quote, and one I need to remember more often. Thank you for the reminder.

      ♥♥ Hugs times a million to you, my dear!

    2. Lost in Space is a very cheesy, old Tv show. It is also a great weakness of mine. My family hates it, due to it being hilariously cheesy....but I love it. Make sure you watch the OLD ones, those are the best. Lol

      Sadly, I don't know The Doctor. Yet. I am searching ardently for him, and I hope that someday, we shall meet. I did see a police box sitting in someone's yard once...However. You can imagine how ecstatic I got. But, it was a Red Police box (red? Come ooon people!!) and therefore, couldn't be the TARDIS. :-( but I feel that was close, very close.

    3. Ah, okay! I'll let you know if I look into it and end up watching it. :D

      I hope I meet him too, someday. Perhaps we could search for him together? And then when we find him, maybe he'll take us on as his companions. Wouldn't that be epic?!

      A RED POLICE BOX?!? WHAT AN OUTRAGE. That's seriously not good. Not good at all. It has to be blue, people. BLUE.

      Maybe the TARDIS has a red cousin. XD I can only hope so.

      I want to go to London for many reasons, but one of the reasons is so that I can see an abundance of police boxes on every corner. XD

  2. I think every book has a time to come out. And if it's not time, it won't come. Which is why writers have to be so patient... they've got to wait for the book. I'm always waiting for the book. Then it comes, and you're madly trying to find time to write it all.

    If I were you, I'd take June as a break and smirk, feeling very unstressed, as everyone neglects their blogs to write rushed books. ;) In other words, don't stress. It'll come. :)

    1. THAT, my friend, is SO TRUE. Every book has a time to come. That's the problem though, it seems that it's not any time for any book of mine to come and I'm just sitting here ridiculously stuck and unable to write a single thing.

      But thank you. I shall sit here smugly, unstressed, and enjoy not writing. At least I shall try, anyway. Thank you so much for the kind words. It will come... and I can't wait for when it does. XD

    2. My book seems to have found its time to come. I just have to find my time to let it come. Weekends and school holidays have to be the most marvellous invention ever. :)

    3. Weekends. Oh, how I love the weekends... seriously. Perfect for writing, resting, and general lounging around. I loveths them muchly.

      Whoever invented weekends, I applaud you wholeheartedly. Well done! (I think God probably created weekends. Just one more reason why He's awesome. ;))

      I hope you find time to work on your book soon! *virtual hugs* What's the general idea behind your book, if you don't mind me asking? (I always feel daunted whenever people ask me that, so I hope this isn't too hard of a question for you to answer, and if it is, you have my apologies and utmost sympathy.)

  3. Ah, the stress that dominates a writer's life! I agree with Ashley above. And remember to pray about your writing and your inspiration. God will do amazing things with them.

    1. I know, right? Writing is so very stressful sometimes. I don't know if I fully grasped how stressful it could be. The words don't always just come, and sometimes they outright refuse.

      And thank you! I've been praying for my writing and inspiration. I'm to the point where I may just start begging for God to smack me over the head with an idea. XD (It's actually happened before.)

  4. I'm going for August too. I wasn't aware of June's Camp looming until too late-- and I didn't get a new story idea until the day after it started. Sewer systems-- that's the name of the game in August. I'll see you there.

    1. Woot! Good to know I'm not alone in this August endeavor! *high-five* We'll have to dialogue together about the event when it starts. (I always love talking about NaNo with other writers, that's half the fun for me.)

      Have you signed up on the Camp NaNo site yet? Sadly I haven't figured out a way to add writing buddies on this incarnation of the NaNo site -- I think that's essentially what the cabin feature was for. I don't like it as much, I miss being able to add all the writing buddies I wish.

      Anyway, my username is ScarlettGamgee, should you want to know that for the future. It's not much to see (yet).

      Sewer systems... hmm, I'm curious as to what you mean now.

      Yes, see you there!

    2. *meets high-five with closed fist, as in a half fist bump, half high five (signature move, goes along with my "wiggly-finger salute")*

      I have. Since we both aren't doing Camp this June, we could probably experiment with the cabin thing together, just to get the feel of it. I'd love to have you as a cabin-mate.

      Gooplebury. It's all about Gooplebury... Wait, no it isn't. It all begins in the sewers of Gooplebury, a place where none but a few intrepid explorers on dares, the maintenance, and the odd road-hockey puck dare to go. And for good reason-- deep in the sewers of Gooplebury hides a portal into the land of [unnamed], a land of lakes in a world so intertwined with ours that they'd be impossible to separate. Then, when a villain inexplicably named Egress (probably) proclaims (or just goes about) his plan to steal the five corners of the earth and create an inverted Earth (all the better for dictatorship, you understand).
      And the funny thing is that I outline none of my plot. That way no plot holes arise early-- they just get solved as I go.

    3. Ah, well played. I approve of fist bumps.

      Oh yeah, sure! So do you just mean trying out the cabin thing now, in June, to experiment with it and figure out what it's like? I'd like to do that! As for August, I haven't got my cabin plans nailed down yet, but I'm definitely open to being cabin mates if you are! I'll probably have to let you know for sure once we get closer to that month.

      Ah! Your novel sounds fantastic, thanks for telling me about it! Gooplebury sounds like an amazing vacation spot. Wonder if I can visit there this summer?

      I love the part about the portal! Portals are FUN -- I want to write one someday. And Egress sounds delightfully evil; I'm curious to find out more about him and his motives. An inverted earth? O.o How intriguing! All in all, your story sounds like it will be incredibly fun to write, and I'm excited to hear how it goes! I love the concept. :D

      Okay, so, um... how do we go about testing this cabin thing? XD

    4. Exactly what I was thinking. We each go on our Camp accounts and request each other as cabin mates, even though we aren't participating in this month's event. Just experiment with it.

      If you put your finger on a map in the exact middle of nowhere, then move it north two inches, that's Gooplebury. If you happened to find water instead of land, you picked the wrong middle of nowhere.

      I'm excited about it too, and your enthusiasm is quite pleasing.

    5. Okay, brilliant! Let's do it. I've figured out how to request cabin mates but I don't have your username -- or would you rather be the one to request me?

      The wrong middle of nowhere. XD That's perfect. I'll be sure to try it next time I see a map. (I'm actually kind of serious. My sister has a gigantic map in her room so I might have to try using it.)

      Oh, good. :D

    6. Mine is dragonfirehurts. I already requested you as a cabin-mate, and the thing said the next cabin distribution was in 20 hours. (That was approximately four hours ago.) Let's see if it works. If it makes you feel any better, you can request me in return, but I don't think it's strictly necessary.

      That's part of the prologue that's been floating around in my head for the last few weeks. Tell me where you end up on the map.

    7. Ah, okay. I, somehow, got sorted into a cabin already, so I requested you in hopes that it would remove me from the cabin I'm already in. Hopefully it'll work.

      I ended up in Ankara, Turkey. :P I'm completely serious.

    8. One of your friends probably hoped you were doing Camp this month and requested you.

      Hmmm... So the middle of nowhere is in Turkey, as well as the town of Gooplebury. (The only two structures I actually know of are the sewage works [purpose obvious] and the insane asylum, a place I frequently refer to occupying.)

    9. Yeah, that's what I thought too, but I know none of the people that were in my cabin... at all. So I'm just guessing that I forgot to specify that I didn't want to be in a cabin.

      Huh, interesting stuff. Never been to an insane asylum. One of these days I'll make it there, I'm sure.

  5. Exploding plots are a nightmare - we've all been there, don't worry. Besides, in the ruin of this plot, there's always a chance you might think up or decide to do something that you didn't do in the first draft! Take it as a learning curve, and it won't seem so tremendously sucky.

    Also, that Doctor quote. Pretty much the motto of my life xD

    1. Oh, good! I'M NOT ALONE. XD Good to know, good to know.

      Ah, yes, that's a good point! Thanks so much for reminding me! ♥♥ I do hope that, in the exploding of my plot, I can come up with something much, much better. That actually wouldn't surprise me -- that's generally the way it works for me. I throw plots to the side only to revive them years later and make them bigger and better than ever before. I only wish it didn't take so long for me to get to the point where I can take an idea and make it better. XD Half of the problem is I'm going crazy not knowing what to write and having all these half-started, not-even-finished plots. It seems to take me forever to actually finish something and make it into a full, cohesive novel. But I digress.

      Ahaha. That's awesome. XD I love the Doctor.

  6. In relation to your troubled plot, my advice:
    Watch FireFly, which was the precurser seris to the movie Serinity. - In essence the show is a Space Western. It's got space ships and high tech mixed with low tec Wild west like settings. Now, it does have some adult content, but it also has some sences like the one you were trying to get but couldn't.

    I love science-fiction myself and grew up reading Anne McCaffrey (who is sometimes classified as fantasy but in her words she stick to newtonian laws and thus is science fiction). I just wrote my first sci-fi story last November. I didn't have any fights though... I think the revolution starts in book 2 (if I write that). But if you focus on the charcters writing Sci-fi isn't any differnt from writing Fantasy, you just have to, well, stick to Newtonian laws. :}

    Anyway I think Ashley has some good advice up there - heck read some books you think might be slightly similar to what you wnat to write, maybe it will kick start your plot. But giving the plot a rest is certainly needed.

    :} Cathryn

    1. Ooh, I've heard of Firefly! That sounds really interesting. I'll have to look into it. The adult content might be a slight problem for me; some things bother me and some things don't, but I will definitely look into it! Thanks for the suggestion!

      Ahhh, I've heard of Anne McCaffrey as well, but never read anything of hers. I'll have to look into it! See, science has never been my strong suit... so putting it into a book has daunted me a lot. But I do love futuristic elements that are often incorporated in sci-fi, such as time travel and spaceships and all that other fun stuff. Because I'm not very good at the science part, I'm thinking that I might gear Corruption to a more fantasy-based story rather than a science based one, while still incorporating futuristic elements. We'll see. :D

      Thanks! That's a good idea. I've been letting the plot rest, like you said. I don't really have a choice at the moment since my plot is refusing to cooperate. XD I'm hoping, though, that with a little rest it will.

      And the reading thing is a good suggestion! I just... don't know how to find books that are similar to the ones I write. XD At any rate, I'll have to read some books in general... maybe that will help bring back some inspiration as well.

      Thank you ever so much for the tips!

    2. Madline L'Engle (I've probably just horrible mispelled her name) has some good books with science in them but not heavy stuff. You've probably at least heard of "A Wrinkle In Time", but these wre followed but "A swiftly tilting Planet" and "A Wind in the Door" (I forget the proper order though). I just thought of her as I was reading "Dragons in the Water" which is a mystery more than anything else, but it's defiantely somewhat cross genre in my mind.

      But yes, when you mix Grenres it can be hard to find a book like yours, so I recommend pick one of the elements and read a book you know has that, then pick another element and read a book, so forth and so on. *grins* Advice I ought to take myself. :}

    3. Oh okay! I've heard of Madeline L'Engle. Maybe I'll try some of her stuff.

      Indeed. That's a delightful idea! That would be a really good way of doing things: breaking down your book into elements and then just reading similar genres based on that. I like it.

      Thank you for all the helpful suggestions!

  7. Hey Becki!
    I know how you feel! This happens to me all the time :P
    I tried to do Camp NaNo in June, but I was too busy with school! August really is the gem xD

    Finding what you are called to write is hard! I'm still searching. Right now, I'm trying out a contemporary fiction for middle school grade kids, a first person mystery, and I absolutely love it because I like the witty/funny kids in it and enjoy writing for people younger than me. I've never liked to read contemporary fiction, but it is what I am most adept at writing. Weird, right?
    Isn't Doctor Who awesome?
    I was raised on Stargate SG1 so I love Science Fiction in the stars, but I don't think I could EVER write it - especially not like Orson Scott Card, he's incredible!

    1. Hey Sarah! Thanks for stopping by!

      Indeed, indeed it is. XD

      That's awesome! Ironically I don't read much contemporary fiction either but I've tried writing it and it's one of the easiest things to write (especially since you don't have to build an entire world from scratch. It's already at your fingertips. :P)

      Yes, Doctor Who is so awesome. XD I'm working my way through the Eleventh Doctor's seasons right now and haven't seen any other eras. But, from what I've seen, I absolutely love the show. ♥ It's the perfect balance of amusing and serious. (The character development is especially mind-blowing. I love it.) Who's your favorite incarnation of the Doctor?

      I was raised on Star Trek! I've heard of Stargate, though, and that's awesome. Being raised on sci-fi shows for the win!

      I think I've heard of Orson Scott Card, but I've never read any of his stuff. I'll have to look him up and see if I'd be interested in reading what he writes.


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