Tuesday, 13 March 2012

Confidence Crisis

I've been going through a tough time recently and it's affecting my writing. A month ago, I was writing lots and producing what appeared to be half-decent short stories. Now, I'm struggling. I do simple writing exercises and I hate what I write so much that I can't continue. My mind seems to solidify.

Having to write a dissertation proposal doesn't help. I want to write a set of Gothic short stories with a linking theme of identity. I'm excited about having the opportunity to spend summer doing this, but I don't feel 100% confident. One day it seems like a good idea; the next, I think I'm an idiot to contemplate it and I should think of something else. Then I have to accept the idea's not the problem: I am.

I'm going to feel the same no matter what I pick, so I'm going ahead with my idea. Now I'm trying to put it into words, but they all come in a jumble and I worry that I can't explain myself very well. The only thing keeping me going is I need to email it by the end of this week. No matter how stupid I/my idea sound, I've got to keep going.

I just hope some confidence comes later.


  1. I sympathise with you, Hayley. I know how it feels when your confidence falters. I've come to the conclusion that it's part of a writer's lot to have these doubts. And I do believe that such determination to make your work as perfect as possible, reveals your true worth as a writer. You really care about it, which means your writing comes from the heart.
    But writing from the heart is exhausting and you may benefit from a break, and being really kind to yourself before you launch back in.
    You are definitely not alone with how you feel. It's not a very evenly balanced lifestyle being a writer. The good days are amazing and the bad ones can feel very low. I'm sure that good days are waiting for you just around the corner. Best of luck.

  2. Thank you, Joanna. That definitely makes me feel better. I suppose that's another aspect of the writer's lot: it feels like you're the only one. Thank goodness for the internet!

  3. I had this problem when I worked on my master's thesis. I keep changing my mind. But in my case, it was my MSc in exercise biological sciences. I had to conduct a experiment which can be very pricey.

  4. wow! quite a daunting task! i hate tackling a forced assignment, all that pressure can squeeze the creativity right out of a person! when i have to write something, i start with brainstorming. i jot words or phrases down, and these usually trigger more. soon coherent ideas form and i have enough to get started with an outline or rough draft.

    i love your topic and i assume you do too, so you should be fine once you get going! good luck & dont give up =)

  5. Thank you :-) I've submitted my proposal and am convinced that my tutors are aghast at how terrible it is, but at least it's done!