Challenge,  On Writing,  publishing,  Topic of the Night,  Writing in Public

More on the Time of Great Forgetting

More on the Time of Great Forgetting

Last night I mentioned the Time of Great Forgetting for writers and a number of writers wrote me privately wanting to know more about what I meant.

Well, basically, the Time of Great Forgetting is when a part-time writer’s attention is taken by life in general and all New Year’s Resolutions and streaks and challenges are forgotten.

This normally each year starts around the first to middle of May and runs until the last of July when writers suddenly remember their writing and then fight to restart.

Why May?

Sunshine, gardens, kids graduations, golf, spring sports, and on and on and on. For some reason, in this period of time from May until late July, writers would rather clean out their garages.

The long winter is over, family and house and cars need attention, so writing is shoved aside. All normal for part-time writers.

Why is July the end?

Boring summer, too hot outside, things are done, kids are in routines, and on and on. The excitement of spring has worn off.

So writers start to come back to their writing at that point, but seldom really get started much until September or even October, even though they want to. Restarting after being stopped is a killer.

What do I think can be done about this natural cycle?

Somehow, do something to keep writing a slight focus. Not as strong a focus as it was in January, but still a focus. Do a few pages of words per day in breaks, or while waiting for the kids.

Make sure you finish a short story ever two weeks instead of every week.

Read some how-to writing books. Take some workshops. Maybe go to a conference if you can carve time out.

Anything during the three months to help you keep at least a light focus on your writing will help you more than you can imagine when July and August comes around. You won’t be restarting, you will be just ramping back up.

A massive difference.

But there is a reason I call this time the Time of Great Forgetting. I can say all this now and you will still forget. All normal.

But don’t worry. I’ll still be here writing right along when you come back in July.



All but the one noted of the April online workshops below have openings, but a couple are getting close. In fact two of them only have one spot left open.

This is a great bunch of workshops this month.

Remember, each regular online workshop is six weeks long and takes about 3-4 hours per week to do at your own pace and your own time during the week. And yes, still room in Author Voice. All workshops but Author Voice limited to 5 writers.

All workshops have openings.

Class #31… April 4th … Author Voice
Class #32… April 4th … Character Voice/Setting
Class #33… April 4th … Adding Suspense to Your Writing
Class #34… April 4th … Ideas into Stories
Class #35… April 5th … Character Development
Class #36… April 5th … Depth in Writing
Class #37… April 5th … Plotting With Depth
Class #38… April 6th … Designing Covers
Class #39… April 6th … Writing and Selling Short Stories (FULL)
Class #40… April 6th … Advanced Depth

Classic Workshops and Lectures are also available at any time.

Full descriptions of the workshops and how to sign up under the Online Workshop tab above.


Totals For Year 3, Month 8, Day 30

Writing in Public blog streak… Day 923

— Daily Fiction: 7,500 original words. Fiction month-to-date: 38,650 words  

— Nonfiction: 600 new words. Nonfiction month-to-date total: 9,850 words 

— Blog Posts: 400 new words. Blog month-to-date word count: 13,900 words

— E-mail: 12 e-mails.  Approx. 1,000 original words.  E-mails month-to date: 528 e-mails. Approx. 30,300 words

— Covers Designed and Finished: 0. Covers finished month-to-date: 1 Covers


You can support this ongoing blog at Patreon on a monthly basis. Not per post. Just click on the Patreon image. Extra stuff for different levels of support and I will be adding in more as time goes on. Thanks for your support.

Or you can just toss a tip into the tip jar with a single donation at PayPal. Either way, your support keeps me going at these crazy posts.

And thanks.

If you would like to leave a tip just hit (Goes to WMG Publishing account, but I’ll get it just fine.)


  • Vera Soroka

    I have had a bad winter. I did finally publish my first novel this month. It took way too long. I did give myself a challenge to write one short story and one piece of flash fiction on my blog and so far I have done it. I have produced over 34,000 words so far this year for the blog. I will publish them for sale as well.
    In April, that is when I hope to get back at it and get into a solid production mode. I’m going to try a few things. I need to shake things up if I’m going to make these goals. I hope I can get through some issues and get on with it already. Sometimes writers can be their own worst enemy.

    • dwsmith

      Vera, have fun with what you are trying. And I must disagree, writers are just sometimes their worst enemy, they are ALWAYS their worst enemy. Nature of this art form. (grin)

  • Dane Tyler

    I love the advice you give on the Great Forgetting. You’re so right about how hard it is to restart after being stopped, and I can attest. Worse still, I do most of the stopping on my own. Last time it was to “celebrate” finishing a book, and basking in that emotional high. Now I know I should have taken that high and channeled it into another story, but I didn’t know that then.

    And I’ll never stop again once I restart. If I can do just what you say, and just eke out a few words a day or a week and keep the fingers moving, it’s a huge help. Huge.

    Thanks Dean.