Last week I was at an annual fall writing retreat with friends at the Oregon Coast. I have two books in the works: my fourth novel, which would have been fun to work on, and my book on sugar and food addiction. I hadn't worked on either book for quite a while as I've writing been some ebooks on self-editing.
Before I left, I decided to tackle the sugar book on the retreat because I felt stuck in the writing, and having a few days of silence and creative support seemed a good environment to deal with that stuckness. I spent the first days moving things around, finding a good organization for the material I had already written, reworking some of the older blog posts that were pertinent, and figuring out what needed to be written. It was very productive, something that always makes me feel good.
Then on the fifth day, I wrote a draft of the emotional eating chapter. I went into it with very clear ideas of the sections and what I needed to say. All that happened and yet something else happened too, some deeper knowing, some deeper feelings. When I woke up the next day, I was wiped out, exhausted, emotionally wrung out.
I didn't write again that day and since I've been home, I've worked on more mundane tasks for the book. I did good work that long, hard day but I suspect it's the tip of the iceberg. As the book comes together, I can feel my old structures of defense falling apart.