I didn’t touch Calm Like Home for three weeks while it was being beta read. I wanted to take a break, come back to it with fresh eyes, reread it after having some time away so I could catch things I didn’t let myself see before. During those three weeks, I received amazing feedback from my betas. I was astounded at how helpful and supportive their comments were. Their words energized me, made me want to come back to the story, to make those finishing touches before moving it forward.
Only being away form the story was a lot harder than I thought it would be. Coming back after a three week writing hiatus was a challenge. I had a lot of false starts and unproductive evenings staring at the computer screen, unsure where to even begin. I had all this great feedback, all these new ideas, but had lost touch with the novel, was unsure exactly how I wanted to fit it all in. I felt drained, sapped, completely lifeless. It was in such contrast to where I had left off. I had gotten into such a rhythm leading up to the beta reading stage. I missed feeling it just pour out of me, spill onto the pages, words cascading out of me like waterfalls. I felt out of touch with the characters. I was no longer wrapped up in their worlds. They felt distant. I just wanted to get back to that place, to rewind, to dive back into the creative process so that it felt natural again. So the characters felt alive again.
A change of scenery finally did the trick. I went to Barnes and Noble to pick up some books and ended up sitting in the coffee shop with my laptop. Something about being in that place, wanting to see my book lining those shelves one day, inspired me. My fingers sprang to life. Suddenly making revisions didn’t seem so daunting. I had clear ideas about how I wanted to revise certain scenes, finally had some direction. I’m happy to say I’m back at it. It feels so good to be writing again, to re-connect with the characters, to dive back into their world. I can’t yet say if the break was worth it, I haven’t done my epic reread yet. But I will say that I am so happy to be writing again!