What Plantar Fasciitis is Teaching Me about Writing

I have plantar fasciitis, a condition in my foot that is extremely painful. It’s an inflammation of the plantar fascia (a band of tissue) that runs underneath your foot and basically feels like someone is stabbing you repeatedly with a really hot machete. A lot of people have this condition, especially runners.

My usual way of dealing with health issues involves a lot of crying, whining and then ignoring the problem altogether. However, when I trip getting out of bed because my damn foot is so sore, even I have to admit it’s time to deal.

Interestingly, I’m finding I have similar stubbornness where my writing is concerned. What’s that? My first pass at a manuscript is NOT perfect as is? It won’t win any awards? WHAT! Break out the crying, whining and procrastination. Luckily, I have figured out some ways to deal with both my foot issue and manuscript woes.

Show a Little TLC

As my BFF likes to say, I’m very hard on myself. Perhaps I just see my own potential, but I feel that if I don’t push myself, who will! Well, apparently when you push yourself to continue working out when you have an injury you can actually do more damage.

Guess what? Same can be said of writing. It’s okay to take a break. In fact, a little breather here and there can be a good thing. Get some perspective, be kind to yourself. After all, writers can be real Sensitive Sally’s. Take a walk, take a vacation or start writing something completely different. Unless you’re using some kind of magic quill, your other manuscript will still be there.

Change is Okay

That whole “runner’s high” is a real thing. And when you can’t run, you freaking miss it! But while I stare longingly at the treadmills at the gym, my trainer has pointed out all of this other equipment available to use … pain free. The bike, the elliptical, the rowing machine, all of these things  still give me a good cardio workout, sans the stabbing pain in my foot.

My current WIP is good. But I want it to be great! So I had to admit that it needed some big changes. Revising is a part of the writing process. I may not like it but I want to improve my story, just like I want to improve my body. So while I’m on the damn elliptical, might as well start brainstorming new conflicts and scenes. Surprise, sometimes you end up liking the new stuff even more.

Learn from this Situation

A chiropractor is working on my foot, doing some wonderful massage therapy that’s really helping. He told me that I will be able to run again (HALLELUJAH!) but that I will probably always have to deal with this condition in some way (TOTAL BUMMER). So I just need to learn what works now and apply it in the future: which stretches work best, how to use a foam roller or the bliss of wearing insoles.

In writing, I consider myself a pantser. But what I’m learning from my current revisions is that an outline can be a good thing. It doesn’t have to be insane, whatever works for you. Because 77,000 words is kinda a lot to go through when you’re trying to figure out where you put that one scene.

Happier Times


So in conclusion, I’m not gonna lie. I don’t like this foot situation and I really hate revising my writing. But in the end, I want to be able to walk on the stage to except my writing award. And don’t think for one second I’m not going to wear heels when I do it.

20 thoughts on “What Plantar Fasciitis is Teaching Me about Writing

  1. Kerri, I know how painful plantar fasciitis is–suffered with it a time or two. Cortizone shots lately helped but they were going to make a support for my shoe. Instead I got a pair of Sketchers Shape-Ups (doctor approved them even)–haven’t had a problem since (and it really helped with my Siatica (sp) ).

    But I know this blog is more than that–I just received a really good rejection from my revise/resubmit. Though it went to aquistions and was rejected (I made it that far!) the editor loved it and wants to see more of my writing .

    After a weekend of letting myself feel dejected a bit–I’m now pouring myself back into my other WIP’s and submitting queries to other publishers. It’s theraputic but I did need those few days to realize it wasn’t the end–just a new beginning.

    I hope everyone who reads your blog realizes this for themselves–no matter what they do (writing or any other career stumble) finds the power to heal and get back up.

    Take care you! Heal and be stronger because you’ve let yourself heal. . . 😉

    1. That’s so exciting that the editor wants to see more of your writing! Congrats!!! 😉

      Apparently, I’m not allowed to have any more cortisone shots. Lamesauce! But for those suffering from this, I found a really good website: http://www.heel-that-pain.com/ – they have amazing insoles and lots of stretching videos. It really helped me!

  2. Ouch, ouch and double ouch. Revising does bite the big one – I’d prefer perfection on the first go around too – but you have inspired me to get back at it!

    1. I’ve inspired you??? NO! Other way around, boo-boo bear! Remember that time we had to sit down, with you and Kim force-feeding revisions down my throat! Ha-ha! 😉

  3. You’ve managed to marry a foot injury and writing into an understandable and relatable way. I also approve of the Trainer Rodney shout out.

    1. Thanks for reading, Hall! Foot injuries and writing seem to go hand-in-hand in my crazy, little mind! 😉

  4. Well said…very very well said. AND quite an inspiring way to kick start a new month. Hard work and flexibility create beautiful masterpieces. Just like you 🙂 PLUS!!! I look forward to running with you and listening to ever detail of your soon to be published novel. Keep it up and stay positive (hugs)

  5. Well………that was just genius! I never would have thought of pairing those two things. I found it inspirational.

  6. Hello Kerri! I agree with everyone that it shows off your incredible talent being able to work these subjects together into an inspiring, informative and entertaining piece!
    My February blog is going to be about Editpalooza but I just have to mention it (again) here because it really has taken the fears I had about revising and quashed them.
    Hope you and your tootsies are having a good, painless day!

    1. So far, so good, Carlene-Mermaid. Thanks for checking! 😉 Of course, I’m about to take a much-needed walk to The Container Store so we’ll see how they’re feeling after that.

      Can’t wait to finally hear about Editpalooza!

  7. I suffer from Plantar Fasciitis too!! Never thought of the correlation between this and writing but you nailed it spot on! Even if I wish the results were instantaneous, our bodies and writing are always a work in progress. Nice post!

  8. Kerri, I’m sorry about the pain. But yes…it usually has something to teach us, as you’ve discovered. And very well said. I had plantar fasciitis when I used to run, too. Time off (and ice) helped. Good luck with the revisions, too. Just another part of the process!

  9. Wishing you healing – wonderful writing! Keep it up! I always love your spin on life!

  10. Kerri,
    I hope that when you step up on that stage to accept your award that you have the sparkliest shoes EVER!
    Way to put a positive spin on a crappy situation.
    Hope your feet and revisions are both successful.
    Great post!

  11. I admire how you changed a negative circumstance into a productive one Kerri! There are some good treatments that can help you relieve some pains. You can think of foot exercises, ice, rest, as well as acupuncture, reflexology, or seeing a chiropractor. Both wearing higher-heeled shoes and unsupportive running shoes can cause plantar fasciitis, so it’s important to be selective on our footwear.

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