View Full Version : How Do You Deal With "Authoritis"

07-31-2009, 06:24 PM
Yes, you read that correctly.
Not arthritis. AUTHORITIS.

I think we all know what I'm talking about.
But if not, read this:


I couldn't have said it better myself.

Here are the symptoms of authoritis:
- You doubt your writing ability, but still believe there is a writer in you.
- You spend way more time writing than doing anything else.
- You're constantly thinking of new characters, ideas, etc.
- You hang out with imaginary characters more than you hang out with real people.
- Your dream of becoming published torments you day and night, especially when you read about other authors and their somewhat easy/lucky journey to the publishing world (not to say it's undeserved, but of course the thought, "Why not me?" pops in your head)
- As you get more and more rejections, your self doubt increases, but you want it so bad you keep going.
- Sometimes, you just feel like a zombie.
- You promise yourself a more well-balanced life, but that never happens. The urge to write is too strong and distracting!
- On bad days, you want to give up entirely and just be a consumer/reader.
- You write because you love it. You want to share your work so bad that you've even considered posting your novels/stories up for free on the web--anything to allow people to enjoy it! But the reason you want to be published isn't for money, it's because you need validation. Just a little validation to make all your pain and suffering worth it because it shows what you've known all along--writing is what you're meant to do and you have truly found your place in the world.

Maybe I'm being a little over-dramatic, but I know I'm not the only one with authoritis.
I don't handle it well, which is why I want to know:


07-31-2009, 06:28 PM
OMG, my affliction has a name! I don't have a cure. It's like an itch that won't go away--you just have to scratch and scratch and scratch.

07-31-2009, 08:03 PM
I have them both, arthritis and authoritis. Neither one has a cure. You manage them both the same way: Find out what you have to do to keep the pain under control.

It never goes away completely. That's where people make themselves crazy. They think, oh, this new drug/novel will fix everything! I'll just pop one every morning/send out one more query and I'll never suffer again! And maybe it works for a while. But sooner or later, you're going to wake up in the middle of the night and something is going to hurt. Like hell. And the depression comes crashing down.

The best approach, I think, is to resign yourself to a life of pain. Then you can figure out how to keep it from getting in the way of what you want to do. For the arthritis, I've found that I simply have to exercise every day, whether I feel like it or not. That loosens the joints enough. Tylenol and a hot bath take care of the bad days. For writing, it's about the same. Write every day, whether I feel like it or not. That keeps the worst of the demons away. Chocolate and a hot bath on the bad days.

Friends who sympathize are helpful, too, but you have to be careful. People get tired of hearing you complain...so they have to be used sparingly.

08-02-2009, 05:55 AM
You described me perfectly. Thank you for giving it a name.

I cry a lot, throw away everything I've worked on periodically and then, when I decide to try again, have to start again from scratch.