So last night I finished writing as much as I could manage with my latest MA chapter, sent it off to my supervisor, and then went into autopilot. For some reason, my autopilot decided that, for the first time ever, instead of waiting a day before going to see my supervisor like I’ve done every single other time I’ve sent them a chapter update, I assumed that the next obvious step was to go see them the next day. So I went and saw them today, and they were a little surprised. Afterwards, I was as well.
It was good though; they hadn’t read my chapter because I had given them literally zero time to do it in, but we arranged to stop using deadlines for me submitting chapter updates and instead to meet up for supervision more frequently. As it stands we’re going to be meeting up once a fortnight, and I think this will help a lot with this final stretch of the project, seeing as I have no idea when I’ll be able to turn in chapters due to sertraline-induced bizarreness.
It is also too early to tell whether the sertraline is working. For those of you who do not follow my other blog that I’m not entirely sure I want to cross-promote just yet, I started taking sertraline for anxiety two weeks ago. The side-effects got really bad one day and I almost called it quits, but after talking to a couple of friends who have had more experience than I with medication of this kind as well as my doctor, I have decided to wait until I see them on Friday before I decide one way or the other. Because for one thing, the side-effects have stopped (perhaps because I’ve gone back to half a tablet per day instead of a full one), and for another it’s supposed to take anywhere between 2-4 weeks before I start seeing any benefits. Which, on the one hand, sucks. But on the other hand, I think it’s worth waiting for, because if it works … I mean, I have wanted a magical cure for anxiety for what feels like my entire life. This won’t be a cure even if it does work, but it could help tremendously, and that is worth playing the waiting game to find out. Worst-case scenario is that it doesn’t work and I stop taking it, and I’m back to square one. And honestly, while square one could be better, it also is a lot better than it used to be, and continued to improve. So overall, I’m not in a bad spot right now.
I’m still trying to get a handle on my whole “let go of old stories” thing, and right now it’s just not taking. I think that’s okay, because dredging up my old projects to mull over in my spare time is such an ingrained habit of mine that I’ll have to do more than write myself an inspiring blog post at 1 in the morning to break it. At the same time, I would do well to start doing more than just wait for it to kick in, because otherwise, experience tells me, it won’t. I’m just not sure where to start.
I was thinking about going back to my witch novel, because seriously I love the idea of the opening sequence, and just focusing on that. But every time I think about it I just end up falling into the same traps that I did with Camp Nano. It ends up being too dark, too heavy, too serious. I’m fine with all of those things in a general sense, but they feel wrong for this story. Really the main reason I even tried to make this story all of these things was because I thought it could fit. But it doesn’t have to, and I think I need to explore what else might work. Like the ideas I’ve already had about it and have not put into writing. One of the most difficult things for me to do, as I’ve said before, is writing things down exactly as they are in my head. It’s a skill I want to get better at, and maybe this is the optimal time to try that.
Then again, considering that I want to explore writing adult characters and moving away from my stomping-ground of angsty teenage protagonists – all of whom seem to be carbon copies of each other to begin with – maybe I need to try something more overtly adult to ease into it. I do remember being a young 20-something and writing this incredibly … I don’t even know the word for it, but basically a bunch of character-studies that were all in the same continuity and were basically writing exercises for me to get into different characters’ heads and try to write experiences that were not my own. And it’s one of the few non-genre projects I’ve ever undertaken, which seems particularly adult. Also boring. But adult. And the characters were adults anyway, so that’s some work already done for me.
The only issue there is that it’s another older project, and looking back at what I actually wrote … I mean it’s not exactly bad, but I also don’t see it going anywhere. So instead, I think I’m going to consider doing something I was considering at the beginning of this year, or maybe the end of last year, which is to write my Garden State. Because horrifying as it is, I think I have one in me just screaming for release.
Here’s the thing about Garden State: I used to like it. Or appreciate it anyway. Sad, lonely, atypical young dude finds the meaning of life and gets an incredibly supportive girlfriend who literally does everything for him. All of that is why I hate it now; but there is still some kernel of unresolved adolescent yearning for what turns out to be utter bullshit in real life, and I think it’s going to haunt me like a ghost with unfinished business – unless I finish that business.
The only issue is that I just feel utterly spent. I don’t want to write. I don’t want to experiment. But a big part of that is because whenever I think of writing something, it’s something old. Something I’ve already been working on. No new ideas are really coming to mind to inspire me. So somehow I’m going to have to get that mojo working. Starting tomorrow, hopefully. Or later today, as it’s just passed midnight. For now, though, I guess I’ll try and sleep or something, drug-gods willing.
I might just need a break, too. It’s been a weird couple of weeks. Maybe I just need some time to recover from medical side-effects and stressing about not working on my MA because of them.
But that’s a lot of maybes, and nothing I do now will answer them. Definitely time to sleep.