Sci-Fi Therapy

Admission: I lurk around the internets too much, and do too little. 

Why the blog slowdown? No writings to post? 

A lot of stuff happened in the past few years – and of course, 2020 happened and I’m still dealing with it deeply, although it may appear surface-wise that I am doing great. 

Between having baby #2, working a ton, health issues, political poisons, Pandemic trauma, civil uprisings, business closures, mental health, elementary school drama, and living with TWO neuro-divergent people and helping to provide them with some stasis of stability, it’s been a lot.

But I haven’t stopped writing; I’ve just stopped blogging. 

I spent much of 2019 and early 2020 writing the novel that I’ve posted pieces of on the blog every now and again. And about halfway through, at what is known as the “murky middle” of drafting at around ~54k words, I suddenly realized that this story is waaay more complicated than I anticipated. And possibly more complicated that I can give credence to with my current skills. It’s fantasy sci-fi. It has dense world building. It’s dual POV, and one of my characters is more interesting than the other. And it’s also kinda… heavy. 

The story takes itself seriously, being the epic sci-fi that it is. And while there are bursts of humor and levity, there’s a lot of DARK elements. A lot of life threatening / end of the world stuff. And the characters are living through traumas that I realized that I don’t really want to sit with right now. 

Instead, I’ve switched gears and begun to draft a hard sci-fi adventure romp centering on an alien as the main protagonist. I needed something FUN. I needed something FUNNY and inventive. And while the plot for the book has heavy themes, the protagonist is snarky yet lovable, and mysteries and secrets abound. And it takes place in space. Just the idea of having some kind of ‘odd couple’ scenario on a cool ship with cool characters is the balm I need right now. No direct earth-based trauma. Just characters running away from it, in order to finally deal with themselves.   

Pretty appropriate, no? 

I’m not completely pantsing it this time, i.e. writing by the seat of my pants, so it’s going better than I expected. I don’t have much time to dedicate to it, but carving out tiny pieces here and there and writing on my phone when things pop into my brain has helped move it along. And I have to say – I LOVE it sooo much. 

I’m curious if other folks out there have also found themselves wanting to shift focus onto more fun-filled themes or books, or have stumbled into a dissociative world that is helping them heal from the past year? If you’re willing to share, please do!

I will come back to my previous project, in all its epic heaviness. It’s a story that is begging to be told, so I don’t think it will stay in storage forever. When the time is right for me – both skill-wise and mental-wise – I’ll be back.

I didn’t think fiction writing could serve as a form of therapy, but lo and behold, it is. 

 ❤

AZ

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