Friday, 8 May 2015

WRITING TIPS #4 ...Take a Miriam Halahmy

I know that everyone says, To be a writer you need to write.
And I say exactly the same in my workshops all the time.
But at the end of last year I ground to a complete halt. I had written a book a year for five years, plus 19 scheduled blogposts each year and umpteen guest and extra blogs, I write on social media most days, I also review books and write occasional articles for books and journals and I write poetry.

That part of my brain and my body which is the writer bit of me rebelled.
So I stopped.
For over two months.

I did other things like walking in the woods and seeing family, especially the new grandbaby, I visited friends and I went to my beloved Hayling Island and walked the route of the old railway line - the Hayling Billy.

Ah ha  you're thinking! But were you happy - that writer not writing?
No - I had all sorts of mixed feelings - I'm not writing a novel, will ever I ever write a novel again, will I want to, what will I do instead - etc., etc., etc.
So was my soul and my confidence and my creativity shot down in flames?

Sometimes it felt like that and a sort of numbness too.
It changed...

All those feelings inside me that come together to make me a writer.

I wrote a poem.

I wrote a picture book text and then I wrote another one. A whole shiny new genre for me and a flutter of excitement ( you know that feeling writers) began to blossom inside me again.
I wrote other things too.


If you feel stale, if you have no ideas, if you have been writing for a very long time and you feel drained, then I would thoroughly recommend a complete break from writing. I mean - DO NO WRITING AT ALL.
Because it works - just as your body needs a prolonged rest after illness or extreme stress,
so does your writing part.
It is a risk - I know it is.
You might be under enforced deadlines - I wasn't.
It is scary.
But I cannot recommend it highly enough. 
My batteries are recharged. I am writing new and fun and good and creative and more than anything else - I am enjoying all my writing again.

If you choose to give my writing tip a try - good luck and stick with it. The outcomes will amaze you.


  1. I agree, Miriam. There's nothing like a break to renew the creativity, and trying one's hand at different types of writing is a great exercise. You never know where it might take you.

  2. That is scary but I am sure v wise and I need to make sure I do it. I feel I can't even have a day off at the moment, and that can't be good.

  3. It wasn't an easy decision Anne but it coincided with a period of lessened demand and so instead of ploughing on and starting another novel feeling tired and jaded, I took the break and it really paid off.