The Starving Novelist
"Writer's block is the psychological or social condition in which a writer temporarily loses the capability to continue writing, whether through losing inspiration or confidence in his/her creativity, or through other personal difficulties. Writer's block - Origins of Writer's Block. True writer's block can be closely related to depression and anxiety, two disorders that reflect environmentally-caused or spontaneous changes in the brain's frontal lobe." - Encyclopedia.

Well, now it all makes sense.  I'm about four pages into my next novel, and I feel like I've hit a brick wall.  I know exactly why too.  My confidence has taken a nose dive.  I received a rejection in the mail the other day on a partial submission, and it crushed me.  I can handle a rejection based on just about anything- the storyline, the plot, the characters, blah, blah, blah.  BUT, criticize my writing?  That is a shot below the belt.  Everything else can be fixed, but if someone tells you they don't like the writing, what can you do? 

Now, I will be the first to admit, the first chapter of my novel isn't my favorite.  It was the first thing I wrote after all.  I was actually told by another agent that the first chapter was a bit "off-putting to the reader."  Personally, I love some off the writing in that first chapter, but at the same time, there are parts that kinda/sorta make me cringe too.  I've decided to wait and see what kind of feedback I get from the two other agents that have submissions, and then I'm going to rewrite the entire first chapter.  If I can . . .

Of course, my fear is that it's just not an awkward first chapter.  What if it's my writing in general?  What if I'm just not good enough?  The fear is paralyzing.  That is what is causing my writer's block.  It's so bad, I could barely bring myself to write this blog entry.  I know, I know- "you have to have a thick skin," "write what you love," and "don't worry, just write."  Knowing and doing are two different things though. 
I'm getting there . . . slowly but surely.  I've started to get my writing playlist ready for my next novel (music is VERY inspirational and important to me when I write), and the character sketches are underway.  My playlist for this novel will include a lot of Tori Amos.  My mc in this book is a very strong, driven and intelligent woman; and I needed music to reflect that.  Also, the emotions that come through in Tori Amos's music are very similiar to what my mc feels- at least at the beginning of the book. 

The Fine Line is still sitting on the sidelines.  Sometimes I feel  my novel is like the girl sitting on the bleechers at a high school dance,  just waiting for some good looking guy to pay her some attention.  She's kind and pretty- maybe not as drop dead gorgeous as the Homecoming Queen, but special in her own way.  Just like my book, her time will come. 

I did recieve a very nice rejection from the agent  I wrote about below.  She offered some constructive criticsm, though some of it was so vague I didn't really understand it.  That's fine though.  Any time I get something more than a "Sorry, not for me," I'm happy.  I still have a full and partial out.  I'm trying to stay hopeful and positve, but I must admit, the rejections are starting to get to me.  Not so much the individual rejections, but the sheer quantity of them.