That’s It, I’m Out

This post is part of the Insecure Writer’s Support Group blog hop. The first Wednesday of every month is Insecure Writer’s Support Group day. Post your thoughts on your own blog. Talk about your doubts and the fears you have conquered. Discuss your struggles and triumphs. Offer a word of encouragement for others who are struggling. The awesome co-hosts for the June 7 posting of the IWSG will be JH Moncrieff, Madeline Mora-Summonte, Jen Chandler, Megan Morgan, and Heather Gardner!

I’m co-hosting the IWSG today, whoo! I really love this group and I love participating in the blog hop every month, and occasionally co-hosting (this is my third time). I credit the IWSG with making me a better blogger. To think there was a time I hated the idea of blogging and barely posted once a month! Now my blog is actually my most active and widely-read social media connection.

And that fits in with my answer to today’s question, in a way:

June 7 Question: Did you ever say “I quit?” If so, what happened to make you come back to writing?

Hahahaha wow. That’s a big YES.

I think part of being a writer–at least, a writer who sticks with it–is experiencing that melodramatic moment where you throw in the towel and fling yourself upon the ground in a fit of despair and defeat. You scream to the skies “I’LL NEVER WRITE AGAIN!” but you know, somewhere deep in your heart, it’s a big fat lie. Because though you hate writing right now, really, really hate it like a cat hates getting a bath, secretly you still love it and you always will.

My “I quit” moment is still part of my writing oeuvre, and I keep it that way so I can occasionally laugh at myself. In 2003, I declared to all and sundry on my LiveJournal that I was done with writing, or at least, the pursuit of professional writing. I hadn’t gotten published in any significant way in all the years I’d been pounding the keyboard (just something in a zine once, which I never even saw), agents and publishers were turning their noses up at me left and right, and I just felt horribly defeated. Here are some hubris-laced excerpts from that tragic post (I will leave all typos and errors of grammar and structure as is, for underlined effect):

…About a month ago, I made a decision. I didn’t write about it in here, because I’ve been saying very little about my life lately in this journal. (If I don’t talk about it I don’t think about it, right?) Anyway, the decision was that I was no longer going to pursue a professional writing career. At first it was that I was not going to write at all anymore, but I’ve written fan fiction since then–albeit, I haven’t finished anything–so I assume I’m still writing. I’m just giving up the dream, idea, hope, whatever it is, of making writing my career…

(Good Lordy.)

…I did write a book, and I’ve had it through several agents and publishers now, trying to find someone who would give it a chance. It’s been turned back every time, and the past two times, I got a very specific answer as to why. I was told it was disjointed, contrived, dull, banal, and the characters were too one-dimensional.

And you know what? They’re right…

(They were totally right, by the way.)

…I’ve been writing for almost 13 years, I’m almost 30, and I have nothing substantial to show for it yet. Because I have this fear I’m going to die not having done anything that people would remember me for. Because I bragged to the people in high school that I would be a famous writer someday, and they honestly believed it. Because I promised someone wonderful and supportive and who was a pivotal figure in me finding the courage to be a writer to begin with that I would some day dedicate my first book to him. I’ve not made good on any of those promises yet, and I’m terrified that I never will…

(My first book was in fact dedicated to him. And oh, to be 30 again.)

…This is the reason I decided to stop pursing a professional writing career–at least, for now. It’s hurting me too much, it’s ceasing to be a dream and becoming a nightmare. And that in itself is painful too. I always had this ‘direction’ in life, and now I feel like I’ve been abandoned in the middle of the woods and I don’t know which path to take…

Goodness, it’s clear why I’m a writer, because I do have a flair for the dramatic!

I can’t remember (my God, that was 14 years ago!) exactly when or why I started writing and attempting to get published again, but I can tell you with almost certainty it was because I love to write and I couldn’t give it, or any of its trappings, up entirely. And now here I am, with multiple books published, going along strong. The reason I still have this entry bookmarked is because I eventually intend to print it out and hang it up next to my first book cover.

You may give up, but you’ll be back. Mark my words.

Make sure to stop by the IWSG site today and check out the open submission call for the IWSG Guide to Writing for Profit!

Author: Megan Morgan

Paranormal and contemporary romance author.

108 thoughts

  1. Oh my your journey sounds tough but am glad you preservered. Writing is all about putting your thoughts coherently On To Paper n the more you Write, the better you get.
    I am loving your IWSG posts and will earmark it to join in next month for sure. Cheers


  2. Great post, Megan. I’m so glad you shared it. I think it’s something all writers have gone through at least once, maybe more.

    I’m happy you found your way back.


  3. Sometimes I think if you don’t have the guts to quit – and begin again- you’re not really thinking about writing in the right manner. It takes work, dedication, and frustration to pull out that awesome story.


  4. I can’t imagine every quitting, but since I haven’t finished my first book yet, maybe I don’t know what I’m talking about. Thanks for co-hosting this month’s IWSG post.


  5. Rejections can be mighty discouraging. Nothing like a dramatic “I quit!” to reinvigorate things. It’s good that you just play-acted the role of quitter.

    Arlee Bird
    Tossing It Out


  6. We all have our moments of doubt and insecurity–that’s what this group is all about. And yes we say we quit, or indicate by our non-action that we quit, but either keep going or get back to it. Maybe we just need a break. Good luck. Thanks for co-hosting this month.


  7. Wow, look at you, Megan!!! You have come such a long way. You sure have found the focus and dedication now, after “quitting” way back when. You are cranking the books out – what a confirmation of being a writer “forever” indeed! Thanks for co-hosting!


  8. Oh my gosh, that sounds like me! lol I was graduating that year and hadn’t even started the book I’ve now been chiseling (I started working on it in 2004), but at 30, I’m almost sure I had that same existential writing crisis! Man!

    Thanks for sharing this, and for co-hosting!


  9. Great post (ouch though, re that feedback!) Great to see how things have moved on though.
    And yes, being with the IWSG has made me a far better and more confident blogger too.


  10. Great post, Megan! Yeah, like 70 published books later and still chasing that “famous” carrot. We write because we can’t NOT write (and we like to whine about it, too. Yes, all drama, all the time!) but what else could we possibly do with all those stories bubbling up inside except share them? Thanks for co-hosting!!


  11. Thanks for co-hosting this month and sharing this story. Rejection is hard to handle, but writing is something a true writer never really gives up. Even if we’re not trying to publish, we are still writing in some way. I think it’s cool that you keep this as a reminder. Look how far you’ve come.


  12. It’s great to meet you, Megan!
    This was a fun introduction to your work and your blog. Great post. Don’t we all say, “I’m out” at some point?
    I also loved your previous post, Making it As A Writer. So interesting and insightful. Thank you for co-hosting!


  13. “You may give up, but you’ll be back.” <—I love this because it's so true. No matter how many times I throw in the towel, I come back to the table.

    Thanks for co-hosting this month!


  14. Repeated rejection can make us feel like failures – but you only fail if you give up! Writing is my addiction, and I stopped seeking a “cure” long ago! lol Thanks for co-hosting this month!


  15. I sometimes wonder why anyone sane would want to write, Megan! But we’re driven, published or not. We can’t let it go permanently. Goody Lordy, I enjoyed reading the passages you shared! I can so relate on many levels. It’s encouraging to see that your persistence over time has paid off. True writers will always be back! Thanks for co-hostint the IWSG today.


  16. I love this! So true, so eloquent, indeed, so dramatic! I’ve been right there with you, “abandoned in the woods” so often, even I don’t take it seriously anymore. I’ve finally decided that I’m a writer and that’s it so suck it up already.Thanks for the laugh! And for co-hosting.


  17. You’re right – saying ‘I quit’ is a big fat lie. Because we can’t. Great post! I enjoyed seeing your thoughts from years ago and then seeing how you persevered, still wrote, and now are singing a different tune.


  18. That’s amazing. I haven’t looked at my handwritten teenage journal in years. I don’t think I want to! We’re just very dramatic as writers, maybe in ways that quieter than actors or performers, but still. Very dramatic. Love the LiveJournal excerpts! And thank you for co-hosting this month!


  19. You know any answer that starts with, “Hahahaha YES” is going to be a good one! Lol. I know the feeling. Lucky for me there are groups like IWSG that drag that feeling out into the light so we can all see how tiny it looks in daylight together 🙂 Thanks for co-hosting this most excellent question for June!


  20. This is my first time here. I’ve followed your blog and am connecting with you online.

    I’m in your corner. Please know that. I feel this way most days. And yes, I’m just as dramatic. You can do this. Never forget that!

    Thanks for co-hosting the June question.


  21. Ah, Megan, Megan, Megan. Writing is in you. You can’t quit. I love your drama and passion. What a great post to keep and remember that 30 year old person. Thanks for being an admin today.


  22. Quitting is always at the back of my mind, but then I ask myself, “What insane, time-consuming, frustrating, insecurity-producing activity could I replace it with? Golf? I don’t think so. Thanks for being an Admin today. This was a great post to read.


  23. Thanks for co-hosting today! Writing must be one of the most frustrating professions a person would willingly want to pursue. Why must we torture ourselves….oh right we’re masochists- I mean we love it.


  24. “I think part of being a writer–at least, a writer who sticks with it–is experiencing that melodramatic moment where you throw in the towel and fling yourself upon the ground in a fit of despair and defeat.” Love that!


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