Wanting help trying to get motivated for writing


#1

Mostly why bother? I’ve actually sorta gotten some feedback but it’s been ‘here read these links no I will not give examples in your submitted works.’ It felt very insulting. I mean people doing overlook for free you can’t expect much, but I was hoping for more than RTFM when nobody, not my English teacher or anyone, complained about structure and dialog hasvyness.

But the more encompassing issue is why should ai bother writing? Because of how disability works I dare not risk even self publishing through different digital services since while I hate being on disability it’s kind of a case of ‘anything I can do would make that go away and replace it with something too sporatic and lowpaying in the best points to rely on.’

‘But why should monotizing mstter?’ Because money is important, it’s clear locally not enough shared interest exists for anyone to want to read and even if that wasn’t the case I do not trust my family to not use it as the punchline of a joke.

I’ve got two partial novels laying around and the bones of a CYOA. Trying to find a reason to bother with any of it.


#2

I’m not sure how feasible any of the following ideas actually are, but have you considered:

A. Publishing under a pen name.
B. Having a friend publish and receive profits for you and then hand them back as a gift.
C. Doing both a. and b. under the table, or just generally publishing under the table pen name or no.

EDIT: One last quick brainburst: Does publishing with Tor allow you to publish and take profits anonymously? If so, it might be something to consider.


#3

A. Not one bit readable since it has to be the taxable entity that is me.

B. Well this is possible but it is more to the point I’m pretty sure gifts of any appreciable amount is taxable or would otherwise Futz with disability.

C. I hate under the table. Mostly because I hate hiding and more practically if anything makes it go ‘oh hey things are going wrong’ it’s someone else’s neck on the chopping block.

D. That is still income I would have to report.


#4

If you are on SSI, I believe you can earn SOME money without being cut off.

I don’t know the exact figures.


#5

Given the last time I had even a summer job, temp work, I got axed from the system and it was a long uphill slog.

‘You can make some money’ $80 a month.

I reiterate. Eighty dollars a month according to the bored looking lady at the other side of the desk when I lost my benefits.


#6

Wow, that sucks. You’re right, that’s basically nothing.


#7

And then people wonder why so many people on government assist aren’t working. It’s a LONG leap from when the benefits get yanked to ‘can survive.’ As much as I grouch and botch about fs!ily… They do keep me relatively physically comfortable.


#8

I wrote a lot of things because I wanted to amuse and entertain others, build worlds in my head, populate them, and make a story unfold, and because while there are points when it’s hard to press on, there’s a lot of points where it was my favorite thing to do and I was making myself laugh. I posted various things for free for a long time online since I hoped people might like them. I self published the Hedgehog Art book, but had posted all the content free and really wanted to see paper copies exist esp so I could give them to my fam and friends - I did make $ but that wasn’t the goal. I’m fortunate in that I’m not really worried about money, and I try to do the ridiculous stuff I do for fun and to please, amuse, delight, etc. others since I hope it might work, and when it sometimes it works that’s all I want.


#9

Universal income is coming! Well probably not in the United States, especially in the foreseeable future. But it is coming in Finland (and maybe Canada)!


#10

My problem on that front is I have an inherent hate of everything I right because it’s never good enough.


#11

That seems to be pretty normal in any creative field, IME. Music, art, literature. Very few are ever happy with the final product.


#12

I’m not sure exactly how it works, but if you’re just looking for readers, you might be able to put your work online for free. There’s Smashwords, or Scribd, or possibly even Goodreads (though I’ve only read reviews there, I’m not sure if they take stories.)


#13

Confidence/want of perfection/lack of self satisfaction is easily one of the largest obstacles to creating art (as you pointed out earlier, finance is up there too). From what I’ve heard you say before getting out of the house can be very difficult, but are there any local writing groups (say run out of a library) that might be close enough to your location to attend?

EDIT: Whoops, @M_M already said that.


#14

So, how about doing something different? I realize that writing is cheap, and may be an activity that you can do, unlike some others. But there are many different kinds of writing. And many activities you can do with an internet connection and a computer. But maybe there is a different kind of writing you can do? Maybe not novels. Perhaps commentary. Blogging. Poetry. Political activism. Something that involves text, but is a different take, something that you like. Perhaps editing wiki-pedia. Or being a mod on line. Try something other than what you are doing and dissatisfied with.


#15

Worth repeating though.

And if I hear it enough, one day I might even start to not hate my own work myself. :rolling_eyes:


#16

I could explain what I have tried over the years in detail but here is a general template.

I am in rut I will try thing as it is free and I am not reliant on others to sctivly do.

This is fun.

Thing happens unrelated that kinda ruins mood. OR attempts at advertising presence is met with at best statistical blips as results. OR Feedback consists of s lot of generic feeling statements. OR I keep getting sidetracked and just let things slide.

Attempts at finding an audience or other connective body feels like I’m going ‘oh woe is me have pity look at this thing.’ Thing is looked at to generally positive sounding noises but I can count on one hand the number of people who have outright volunteered to KEEP reading. I have gotten precisely one person who gave me the sort of feedback that is helpful in a way I can diguest without setting anger/paranoia off.

Frustration sets in and it feels like wasted effort.

So I can see the error loop happen. I do not know how to break the pattern and actually just let go of the world for five or ten minutes at a snap and Do.


#17

What is it exactly that you want to get out of your writing? Do you need to create content for an audience? It sounds like your experience with that is not a positive one. How is it different from being member of a community where you can talk and socialize with others? Why writing?


#18

I’ve been asking !myself that for awhile. I cannot say that this is The answer, but is A answer, or at least part of it.

Generally speaking if O want to do something I would need help either in getting resources or in the execution bits. For me this is problematic because I depend on other people for both and those other people do not share my interests, and even when help is given it takes me nagging to the point of being irritating, or risk outright ridacule (backhanded so person can go ‘you’re just reaching I never said that I was just *stating thing that leaves insult as likeliest intent"’

So let’s look at things I can do on my own I have any skill at and a look at things I like to do. Hey I like reading. Hey I have a lot of opinions on why this PR that story is garbage but only would need minor tweaks to be decent.’

I am also deeply aware that a large part off it is ‘I want to make something that shows I have value. That I’m not just this disabled joke that’s just able enough to get passed over for more involved help but not able to actually do, and at the same time I am more than just this southern white bread that gets lumped in with groups that get yelled at for being oppressors due to where and how I grew up along with. Me being geared to confront rather than take insults in stride.’

When nothing you do seems to matter beyond keeping a house in order and nobody seems to respect you on or offline… Finding some way of grabbing a sense of self worth matters, that there at least is something about me that couldn’t be done by a trained monkey.


#19

Several things:

First: If you’re looking for another reader/editor, I am open to doing that for you. I give specific, detailed feedback (generally with examples from other authors), but I’m a bit light on the “tact” thing. I will try not to tear your work to shreds, but it’s really hard for me to soften honest criticism.

Second: “Get motivated for writing,” from what I’ve heard, is the wrong problem to have (which is annoying, because it’s a problem that I have as well). You need to be able to write regardless of whether you’re motivated or not. And it doesn’t matter if what you write when “not motivated” is crap; at least it moves the story forward, and if you want to come back to that segment and replace it when writing the second draft, you can.

Third: I find that nagging doesn’t help me at all; it gets me, as you said, irritated, and makes me want to push back rather than accomplish anything. I find stinging my pride works a lot better. “I bet you can’t write more this week than you did last week.” Or competition: “I bet that I can write more words than you can.”

Fourth, about quality: as the NaNoWriMo book, “No Plot, No Problem” says, when writing your first draft, you have to turn off your inner editor and just write. It’s often said that every author has a million bad words to write, and it’s best to get them out of the way as soon as possible. No book is good on the first draft. Your goal with the first draft is to write a book: not a good book, but just a book. After you write it, you can then assess whether the book can be saved through editing.

Fifth, about publishing: one of our hosts, Cory, has often said that the problem for writers is not getting paid when people read their work, but rather getting people to read it in the first place. Once you feel that your work has been competently edited, get it out there. For free, if that’s what you have to do to keep from getting screwed over. Once you have a bunch of people who want to read what you write, and something for them to read, then you can go about trying to monetize it. Until then, just work on getting words on the page, and getting eyes on those words.

Finally: If you’re really serious about writing as a career, then, from what I hear, it’s very difficult to get an agent without a published work in hand, and almost impossible (and borderline stupid) to go to a publisher without an agent. If you have any friends in any sort of media (newspaper, TV, books, movies, magazines, anything like that), then, once you have a few finished works ready for inspection, start asking around to see if any of their agents can get you an in with an agent who specializes in the kind of story you’re writing. The old saying is that it’s not what you know, it’s who you know, so be prepared to leverage who you know. Or, to put it just as honestly but less horribly: to give the people who want to help you the opportunity to help you.

I hope that some of this is a help to you.

Best of luck in your writing,

~Nim


#20

I feel you, I always see a hundred flaws in everything I make or write, and always wish I’d edited more, rewrote things, and done things better, and cringe the instant I post anything since I see every wrong in there. Perfectionism is normal, there’s a lot out there written on overcoming it and it’s worth re-reading regularly since it’s a creeping habit that sneaks back all the time. My advice it to try to be kinder to yourself and try to see if the good outshines the inescapable imperfection. If it does, then you should be pretty happy, but other people have better advice.

If writing it is what you want to do and you can accept that the norm for writers is no recognition, income, broad readership, or, well, anything besides the happiness of getting to do it as a hobby with some pride in seeing yourself improve in a craft, then just keep writing since the more you do the more you learn and the more you find your voice. That really is an awesome thing, and I hope you’re motivated since you just want to try to excel at the craft since that’s the best motivation. If you’re doing it as a means to an end, then I’d suggest doing something else since with Kindle publishing easing the entry, the field of amateur writers contributing which was already large has grown massively.