Avoiding Burnout and Failure




Man, I'm not too fond of that word.

Blog blog blog blogging blog. It's an awful-sounding word. At least "tweet" is cute. But blog? Uck. I say that word, I forever envision some fat-bellied toad creature, some slick-bellied beast sitting in a pile of effluence, and sometimes the beast opens its greasy maw and crassly belches forth a toxic cloud, a cloud that smells like someone filled a balloon with vomit or the mystery meat your school sold back in 5th grade and then threw it into a bonfire.

So, basically, I envision Snooki.

Still, this is irrelevant to the discussion. It is regardless if you care to use words that are made up.

This post is all about writing a book while not suffering from burnout or depression.

First, you need to know I wasn't supposed to write this book.

I wrote a short story while bored in class, and that evolved into a book; the original story was really about working on my writing so I could do better in English class. Still, I was bored and had a story I wanted to tell.

Oh, also? A global pandemic happened.

But this was all meant to show my starting point when I started writing Eerily Wrinkling and the Prodigal Return. I went through many struggles during the process and nearly had a mental breakdown...twice. But the work forced me to learn things that I now use to keep myself going no matter what I face, and today I am going to share them with you.

1. Don't Internalize Criticism

Whether it's related to an in-depth article you spent weeks working on or a short social media post you cranked out quickly with confidence, every writer gets revision requests or feedback from readers and clients that may come as a surprise or annoyance. Most of the time, however, such actions are meant to be constructive and beneficial. It is essential to know if you internalize the cruel things people say to you, it won't hurt them; it will only help you. There were many times when I could feel my will breaking, and the dark thoughts everyone had harbored at some point slowly began to consume me. I may not know what you're going through, but I know that nothing is impossible so long as you have the will and want to achieve it.

2. Learn to Say 'No'

Avoid burnout by not putting too much on your plate at any given time. For instance, if you already have a few big projects to work on, don't take on another one that will also take up a lot of your time to the point where you're overwhelmed. If you are having people review your work, be open to improving it, but if there are things you want in there, add them. Every writer ever has added something they regret or wish they expanded on, but ultimately, your goal should always be to enjoy the story you wrote and not feel like an imposter.

3. Love What You Do

Write what you like; don't feel pressured to write what is popular or what others tell you to. Writing is the ultimate form of creative expression, and as such, you should feel free to write what you want.

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