Wednesday, October 3, 2012

Picking up the Threads

So it's been quite a while since my last blog post.  Partly because I have had no idea what to write and partly because I was considering where I wanted to go and what I wanted to do.  Not only with my life in general but with my writing in particular.  It's been a very long year of soul searching, praying and thinking.

I have a problem.  I want to write but I feel more and more lately that I am really terrible at it.  (No, that is not intended to garner sympathy from anyone, that is simply a statement of fact).  Now before you go and tell me you're sure I'm wonderful (not that I mind being told that) let me explain why I say it.  I'm creative, very, very creative.  I can and have created multiple worlds in incredible detail, from the wide expanse of the continents that fill it to the tiniest bug crawling along whatever leaf I've decided to add into that area.  I have folders, notes, books filled with ideas, with creations with histories with whatever else my mind has come up with.  I have written by myself 3 novels that do not satisfy me and I have written with a very close friend of mine something close to 20 more.  Has any of this ever seen the light of day?  No.  I'm not even a bad editor, I know what a story needs and I have a very good memory to prove why something doesn't make sense.  I also see how things fit together.  I am in many ways drawn toward writing and the puzzles of figuring out the story behind it.

But where I feel I fail and where I have found myself struggling, perhaps as all writers struggle from what I've been reading, is in sitting down to write that first blasted draft.

I had a new idea.  I wanted to get away from Fantasy for awhile because I was so deeply into the world I had created and the hundreds of ideas around it that I couldn't stop creating long enough to sit still and write.  (Screw writer's block, since keeping track of them I realize my biggest problem is staying to one freaking idea instead of not having any.)  So I decided to try a genre that I had absolutely no experience in because I had an idea.

So what did I realize?  A lot of things actually.  For starters, I LOVE having a plan and as much as I love having that plan I adore changing it as I go along.  I used to think i hated having an outline, let alone a detailed one that went through scene by scene (and yeah, that's SCENE, not CHAPTER, they vary in length.)  In a lot of ways I've found that it keeps my creativity from spiraling out of control and running off without me (this happens a lot, at least to me, and no one ever talks about it in any book about writing I've read, they always talk about blocks, not run-away fright trains of ideas >.<).  I've even had to go so far of adding folders with quick notes for any new ideas that do NOT fit into the novel I'm working on.  The plan has helped keep me on track to an extent (read, I'm 180 pages into the novel) but I've realized yet again that I've managed to spiral out of control even trying to keep it tightly paced and focused on only TWO characters.

Did I mention it was a Romance that I'm working on?  It's hard, I've been doing research, reading books I never thought I would enjoy (but surprisingly I am).  It has brought new layers, new ideas (and unfortunately and fortunately, new worlds) to my life and my writing but it has also brought me up and down.  Right now, today, as I am writing this is a peculiarly twisted day where I am both up and down.  I have somehow managed to write characters strongly enough that they developed and ran away with the story and I didn't notice until I was more than halfway through (blasted things that they are).  Now I'm stuck.  Do I go back and edit or do I keep writing but adjust things as I go.

I have been trying desperately to convince myself to just keep writing and to fix things later but I realize I really can't do that.  If it's a small thing sure, but honestly I'm starting to realize that with certain things (writing being one of them) I'm a closet perfectionist and I HATE it with a passion when things do not make sense in a story, my own included. And when I make a major change part way through... well... let's just say I'm not very good at trying to continue knowing how much editing I'm going to have to do later to make it make sense.  I'm a first draft kind of girl and I LIKE it that way.  (Don't worry, I still expect to have to edit but if I don't have to make major changes to the story I like it better that way.)

So I decided to blog about it and put some thoughts down.  The number of views I have had since I went on hiatus is absolutely shocking to me so thank you for bearing with me.  I intend to continue blogging and slowly get back into it.  We'll start with once a week as I don't want it to overtake my writing like it did last time and due to the presence of film and acting in my life I already have enough competing for my attention.  So welcome back and I hope to be a help to other authors looking to not only write their books but maybe help you figure out how to unblock that creative flow, or to build a damn to direct the flow of ideas, whatever may be.  Or really, just to be one more voice in the hundreds that think they're important enough for someone else to want to read.  lol!

God Bless.

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