Bursting The Bubble

I returned to my current book this week after a two month hiatus where we eyed each other uneasily on a daily basis. I finished the first draft of it in mid-December, over two weeks ahead of schedule, having studiously worked on it every day for three months. When I finish the first draft I like to step away from it and take a break before I start the editing process. This has been a longer than normal break though so I was glad to finally drag myself back to the keyboard.

I’m not sure why it was such a long break this time round. The plan was to get back into it after Christmas but January dragged into February and now, here we are, almost in March. I really have no excuses. My office is shut due to the ongoing pandemic so I’ve been working from home. There have been no distractions, nothing to stop me from devoting sizeable chunks of time to the manuscript. It just hasn’t happened and I can only attribute that to lockdown fatigue.

Northern Ireland is now in its ninth week of current restrictions. Shops, bars and restaurants are all closed. There are no after-school activities to run the kids to and from because there is no school. We currently have three bored, restless teenagers homeschooling and it’s a long, hard slog. It’s so easy to sink into a rut, go through the motions, and wish for the end of a seemingly endless day. Our leaders talk of a light at the end of the tunnel but they’ve been saying that for a year now.

We become demotivated. There are days I don’t want to get out of bed, let alone wash and put on clothes. I barely run now, a far cry from my marathon-crunching heyday. My blogging has been sporadic and, at times, half-hearted as I struggle to find anything even remotely interesting to write about. I’ve been reading a lot but every book makes me doubt myself more, wondering why I’m even bothering anymore. Every NY Times bestseller I read convinces me that I’m never going to have a NY Times bestseller.

It’s a vicious circle. Part of me is scared of this return to normality being pronounced as the vaccine cavalry come thundering over the hill. The thought of going back to work every day, commuting to and from Belfast, frightens me. What if I’ve forgotten how to do my job? What if I can’t do it anymore. My running and writing have fallen by the wayside so what if this is next. I’ve become comfortable in my enforced bubble, I don’t know if I want to leave it quite yet.

But I’ve taken a step. I opened the dreaded laptop three days ago and started to read. Chapters I wrote almost six months ago, plots and characters I barely remember creating. And you know what? It wasn’t too bad. Yes, it needs tweaking and polishing but it’s okay, it’s alright, it’s not bad. I won’t have to hit delete and start over. It has the makings of a book, another stone in the legacy I’m trying to build for my family. The bug is back, I want to see it published, I want to write and push myself again. I’ve burst the bubble.

Published by Fractured Faith Blog

We are Stephen and Fionnuala and this is our story. We live in Northern Ireland, have been married for 17 years and have three kids - Adam, Hannah and Rebecca. We hope that our story will inspire and encourage others. We have walked a rocky road yet here we are today, together and stronger than ever. We are far from perfect and our faith has been battered and bruised. But an untested faith is a pointless faith. Just as a fractured faith is better than none at all. We hope you enjoy the blog.

33 thoughts on “Bursting The Bubble

  1. The pandemic, coupled with a seemingly longer winter this year, has had me adrift in malaise and boredom. Like you I have been doing a lot more reading but nothing had been able to break me out of this awful funk I was in. Happily, also like you, I am beginning to feel a new breath, an awakening. I still feel as though I have nothing worthwhile to say or to blog about. But that is lifting. I am glad you have dusted off the laptop and able to get back at it. Wishing you all the best, and your whole family too.

    Liked by 3 people

  2. Yes! Oh my gosh this was such an inspirational an uplifting post for me as I seem to have slumped into the bubble as well. Also, as author to author I can commiserate with the “my-books-never-gonna-be-good-enough” feeling. Dreadful feeling that I’m going through as well, though Hope Will Conquer! Thank you for sharing!

    -Ireland must be beautiful in the winter!

    Liked by 2 people

  3. 👏🏾👏🏾👏🏾👏🏾👏🏾👏🏾👏🏾👏🏾👏🏾👏🏾👏🏾👏🏾👏🏾👏🏾👏🏾👏🏾👏🏾👏🏾👏🏾👏🏾👏🏾👏🏾👏🏾👏🏾👏🏾👏🏾👏🏾👏🏾👏🏾👏🏾👏🏾👏🏾👏🏾Good for you man👍🏾👍🏾👍🏾👍🏾👍🏾keep going


  4. You are not alone, Stephen. Stay present, enjoy the moments when you can. Your passion for creative writing may feel dormant at times, but trust the ebb and flow.


      1. I’m good, Stephen–all things considered. We have to take one day at a time 🙂 It’s great to hear you are still writing and still blogging. Writing has always been a friend to me, even when everything else feels broken.


          1. Only in my journals. It’s been a challenging time for me–mentally and emotionally, getting into the flow of a very demanding job. I am just starting to come up for air after about 6 months of concentrated focus on little else. I posted on my blog yesterday if you are interested…


  5. Go you! (That sounded less patronising in my head 😆) But seriously, kudos to you for getting back into it and knowing that you’re a good wordsmith. The line, “All writing is rewriting” comes to mind when I think about editing. You’ve dived back in and you’re getting stuck in! Hearing about other authors working their way through the editing process encourages me to dive back into my own editing! So thank You!

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