Just Can’t Be Happy Today: Post-Novel Depression

Obviously, I finished the novel last night. Well, the first draft. Copies were sent to beta readers (PS, if you’re interested, I still have a few open slots. Let me know, I’d love to have your feedback). A guitar was purchased in triumph.

And then suddenly, I felt empty. Listless. Even though I’ve pursued an insane course of writing the last few days, getting a lot of words out in a very short amount of time, I still wanted to sit down and start writing again. But of course, if I did, it would have to be on something new. And I wasn’t quite ready for that. Besides, my plan was to take a vacation this weekend. That meant no writing whatsoever. Just unwind and enjoy myself.

Only the structure of writing is part of what helps to keep me going every day. I think I’ve mentioned before that I have ADHD, and that means a need to build a structure that keeps me on track. I found myself without the idea of how to build that structure. I mean, sure, I have Entanglements all ready to start up, and I want to complete that erotica story that I started ages ago, but…well…

It wasn’t just the lack of having something to write. I know I need to take a break and write some other stuff before I jump back in to edit the novel. Hell, I’d like to have the feedback from my betas before I even think of reading the book again myself, that way I can go in with a concept on my mind. I know all that, rationally. But even so I found myself starting up the book last night anyway. And you know why?

I missed that world. I missed the whole context of it. I missed my characters. It became pretty serious, actually, with me asking myself if I was just a fraud, if the book had been written in the grip of some delusion, etc. I got concerned enough that I looked on the Internet to see if other writers experience this feeling after completing a novel, and sure enough, they do. It actually seems to be fairly common, known as post-novel depression, and it just takes some time to get over it.

So I’m acknowledging it with this short entry, and then I’m going to go off and do some other stuff. Seriously, vacation time now. Time to enjoy it.

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  1. It’s always difficult leaving a great universe once you get all wrapped up in it. It’s especially hard if you are the one that shaped the universe.
    Congratz on the completion of the first draft!

    • That’s a great point. I’ve finished reading some great books and felt a sort of sadness when the story was over. I guess that’s how I felt this time. Maybe that’s a really good sign of where the story is coming from. I sure hope so.

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