And no writing to be had. Lots of thinking and pondering and researching, but no writing. Sometimes, I think that’s the most difficult part of being a writer—being still and patient while the story mixes itself together…
I heard a Margaret Atwood quote, “Remember trees don’t grow from air, they grow from dirt,” which reminded me that the best way to grow things is to add fertilizer, and all of it was an encouraging shot in the arm as I slog through this manuscript…correction, OUTLINE.
I’ve decided calling it a 1st draft or manuscript was putting too much pressure to make it perfect from the get-go, but an **outline**, well, an outline can be full of plotholes and ums and uhhs and inconsistencies, which is yet another thing to remind myself off when I get frustrated when I notice my default reaction for the characters are their eyes.
Boy, those eyes. They dart, gaze, glance, watch, flicker, widen. They show the character’s uncertainty, irritation, indecision.
But, breathe, Natasha, breathe. It’s not a manuscript. It’s an outline, so who cares if “eyes” are mention 465,287 times in 10 pages? Remember fertilizer makes things grow. Don’t fret if it’s all poopy, right now.
I figured out my story’s plotline and I have a chapter-by-chapter outline…so why does the writing feel like someone is taking out my wisdom teeth with a dull spoon?
Oh. Right. Because I’m trying to write **perfect** out of the gate, because I’m trying to hone the voice, and solve the plot holes, and create an aesthetic, all at the same time I’m sorting through getting the words on the page.
Breathe, I have to remind myself. Breathe and let it be an ugly, knotted mess. It’s a first draft, it’s supposed to be dirty-faced and knocked-kneed.
Three thousand words into the manuscript, and it’s delete, delete, delete.
I know the premise is good. It gives me chills. I’ve talked about the idea with fellow writers of different genres and it gives them chills, too.
The problem is the outline. Getting my character from A –> Z, figuring out **who** the character really is, and who are the people that surround them.
On the bright side, I have a couple of twists figured out, and I’ve decided that counts for something.
On the other bright side, finished edits on another manuscript and it’s out with Beta readers and that definitely counts for something!!
Okay, I think I’ve got the story idea that will become a manuscript, and that’s all I’m going to say until I type “the end.” 😛
Not only do they help make your book better and your story more polished, they also distract you from the work in progress that’s **not** working.
Super frustrated over the lack of novel writing. It’s been 19 days, NOT THAT I’M COUNTING, or anything. Not that I’m thinking that’s **almost** a month of lost words, lost work time…
It’s not that I don’t have any ideas. It’s just…there’s something off in all of them…it’s just that they all excited me equally. The last three manuscripts I drafted, I felt it, y’know?
I feel all of these on equal levels, they all terrify me on equal levels…
Today I woke up thinking of Agatha Christie saying she knew she was a professional author when she wrote even when she didn’t feel like it, didn’t like it, and wasn’t doing that great a job.
So, I’m going to try again, but instead of hoping for inspiration or some divine music from the heavens, I’m just going to try, without any expectation of what kind of outcome I want.
Yesterday’s thought: I’m going to do 15 minutes on one book then 15 minutes on another book, and so on, and maybe that way, I’ll get traction on one story.
Yesterday’s reality: Grabbed my husband, the furry ones, and streamed Scott & Bailey until bed time.
Today’s another day, though, right?
Back in the day, I used to be pretty good with my online blog. But then, family members got sick and some passed away, and in the meantime, the online conversation seemed to polarize itself with people shouting louder and louder, and no one wanting (it seemed) to hear each other.
I’m not one for being shouted at, so I stepped back, then stepped back, until I was hardly (if ever) blogging.
But now, I have a redesigned website and it seems only right to come back to the digital page and take up the pen, once more.
I’m looking forward to the writing as a way to prime myself for the story work. I’ve been in a state of limbo for the last two weeks, trying to sort through which project to do next. The problem isn’t a lack of ideas. It’s the opposite. I have too many ideas. And like many authors, I have 4 or 5 books that are in a state of partial completion, put down for a variety of reasons, and I fret whether to start something new or finish what I’ve started.
So, for the next week…um, okay, today, I’m going to try 15 minutes/idea. And then tomorrow, I’m going to try that, again. And I hope by doing this, I’ll finally find some traction on the story.