Even Writers Go In "Slumps"

Nick CarloAnalyst IIJune 15, 2009

If you are reading this article then you most likely read the title.  You probably put two and two together and found out that I am considering myself in a "Slump", a "Writer's Slump".  You are right, ever since I won the Article of The Day, a couple of months ago, I have a feeling that my writing hasn't been the same.  

I have found myself forcing myself to write and the results haven't been good.  In this past active my activity on this site has been dormant due to review for finals and all other types of things that kept me form writing.  I would check my profile and see that I haven't written an article in 10 days, I would then just force out an article. 

To me, they seemed pretty good, but the website didn't think so.  I have been getting very little reads and comments on my articles. 

Before you click the back button out of this page because you think I'm complaining that no one reads my work or comments, I am not. Trust me on that.

When I saw that I wasn't getting any type of success with my articles I made a big mistake, I started to get mad at myself.  Now that I am thinking about it, I put myself in this "Slump" just like all the other sports players in the world who go into slumps. 

I am going to use baseball as an example and then compare my situation to it.  Most slumps follow hot streaks. 

Pretty much every time a player falls in a slump, they have been playing great prior to the slump. They were hitting .600 with 7 homeruns and 14 RBI in the past week. 

Everything was going right for them, when they didn't hit the ball hard it would find a hole in the outfield.  When they hit the ball hard there was nothing stopping them from an extra base hit or a home run.  Many players say that when they are hot the baseball looks like a "Beachball" coming to the plate and that everything is in slow motion. 

Suddenly the player's hitting streak stops at a screeching halt, he goes 0-4 and strands 5 baserunners.  His team loses and he feels it's his fault.  He starts to beat himself up and then everything starts to fall apart.

He goes back out the next day and swings for a homerun the whole day and he goes 0-4 again.  The stats start popping up on the television screens showing he's 0-8 in his last two games. 

I have never been a major league baseball player and I don't think I ever will be, but I strongly believe that this is what happens to players who fall into slumps.  This is how they all start.

After he is "declared" to be in a slump it is up to the players himself to determine how long he will be in that slump.  For some players their slumps last a mere 4 or 5 days, but on the other hand some slumps can even last a whole year.  That is very unlikely, a more reasonable amount of time is at least a month. 

If the player keeps beating himself up then his slump will be prolonged until he figures out to just go out and have fun.  If the player sets it straight and goes out on the field not concentrated on getting out of his slump he eventually will get out of his slump and go into a hot streak. 

It's a weird world right?

As for me, this is how it happened.  I was coming off of some decent articles with plenty of reads and comments. 

I didn't know what to write about, I didn't panic, I just sat there and thought. 

An idea struck me, "How I Discovered Bleacher Report".  I went on writing and had fun writing it just like I am now writing this article.

When I published my article, despite mentioning getting a POTD, I had little to no confidence that that article will get me a POTD, I wrote just to share my story with other people. 

Things went right and I found a gap, I also got some great help from some great editors.  Hotnuke, Pete McKeown, Hao Meng, and many more helped make my article the best it could be. The reads were flowing in at a rapid rate and so were the POTD votes. 

I couldn't believe it, I felt so good.  I got so many great comments and it really made me want to write more great articles. 

I had a good feeling that I was going to get the POTD, there were blue ribbons all over my recent activity.  I went out with my friends and I came back to my article in the little orange box on the front page of Bleacher Report

I sat there in awe, I was so happy.  I told my mom and urged her to read it, I had to explain to her what a Pick of The Day was because she looked confused.  After I explained she was so happy, she read the article and was amazed. 

I told my whole family and they were all amazed too. I felt great, and realized that I can actually be a pretty good writer on this site. 

I went from a cocky Met fan that knew how to get on everybody's nerves to a POTD winner that was said to be the young blood the site needed. 

After that article I was, in a way, trying to hit a homerun every at bat.  I found myself always going for the big one. 

One POTD wasn't enough for me, I needed more.  I then had a couple of bad articles and started to think that I was a bad writer. 

I was trying to do too much and it showed.  Everything was coming at me faster and smaller at the plate.  I dug myself a deep hole that I am still not out of.  

I have no idea when I will get out of that hole, and I hope it would be sometime soon.  I am falling apart and I don't have enough experience to know what to do. 

I hope that I showed you how similar slumps in baseball are to slumps in writing.  They are both so similar and both so hard to get out of.  Some get out of them faster and some don't. 

A pencil and paper or a keyboard and a computer screen are powerful things.  They do what you tell them to do, they write what you tell them to do. 

There's nothing stopping you from trying to do too much.  In a recent article by Graham Brunell he talks about that one month that every Bleacher Creature should experience. 

He took a break and he's back and writing his usual great stuff.  I am sure everybody else like me, is proud that he's back and their was nothing wrong with his month off, he needed it.

And I'll be the first one to admit that I may need a month off, but I just can't.  I love this site too much and I will keep writing even if I'm not writing good, I know that that one article will come, that one hit that get's you out of that slump and back on a hot streak.  Just remember, Even Writers Go In "Slumps".