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.