Have you seen my dragons?
by Fiona Crawford - July 18th, 2012
One of the cruellest parts of being a writer is that inspiration only strikes when you’re completely and utterly prevented from acting on it. Say because you’re in the shower or you’re driving or because you’re on deadline and under pressure in an open-plan office pen where you’re doing some form of work to fund your real writing work.
Unfortunately this week I’ve discovered something even crueller: I’ve lost my enthusiasm.
I don’t want to come across self-pitying or (worse) mock-worthy like Daenerys’ with her ‘Where are my dragons?’ mopes-meets-demands, which have spawned many a swell-warranted spoof. Lost enthusiasm isn’t, after all, the worst thing to have ever happened. But it is debilitating in ways worse than writers’ block and the many other vagaries that plague writers. And I’m not quite sure how to shake myself out of it.
This loss is so all-consuming that I’ve even lost my enthusiasm for reading [cue thunderous musical interlude and melodramatic gasps and limbs a flail]. I know, right? Who knew it was even possible to lose that?
After all, one of the great quests of my life has been how to fit in more reading time (and, ultimately, less time for things like non-writing work and cleaning). It’s an internal balancing act that matches the physical, perpetually teetering balance of my tower of un-read books.
The problem with losing my enthusiasm is that I’m unsure where to find it. Is it like amnesia—something that’s only temporary and that it’ll just take the right moment to jog your memory?
Is it like losing your keys while inside your apartment and you know that they have to be here? That enough time and bag shaking will see them reveal themselves where they’ve been all along: right under your nose?
Or is it like losing your puppy and you need to plaster the neighbourhood with ‘Have you seen my dragons puppy enthusiasm?’ I’m hoping it’s not the latter, because lost puppy stories rarely end well.
It’s not that I don’t have plenty of things to do (in fact, I have deadlines staring me down and whooshing by). It’s not that I’m avoiding deadlines either. I just can’t summon the enthusiasm for anything—good or bad.
The question is, how do I snap out of it? The only solution I’ve so far been able to figure out is that the new Bloodlines book has been released and is currently somewhere between (and this is no small irony) Boomerang Books’ warehouse and my mailbox. That is, it’s currently unavailable. Any other suggestions?