Tuesday, March 8, 2011


I've been here before.

The shiny newness of the project hasn't worn off yet, and I'm still excited about being inside my characters' world. The words are halting at first (priming the pump has never been so taxing), but they do kick in eventually. I'd forgotten the simple pleasure of composing just for the hell of it. I'm reading over the pages I have, and every time that nagging little voice whispers in the back of my mind...

                               will this be good enough?
                                                                                     should I put it that way?
           can I get this published?
                                                                     what would an agent think?
                              would people buy this?

...I just reply with a big old "SHADDUP."

I'm trying to create just for the sake of creating. It's been a while since I took that ride; I want to see if it's as nice as I remember.

Of course, I haven't invested months in it yet, haven't agonized over plot points, haven't really gotten picky about word count yet. That comes later. After the shiny's worn off.

Yeah. This feels familiar.


True Life and Fiction said...

I know how you feel. A new project is always so great, all those characters swimming around your dreams at night, twisting plot and surprising even themselves. Then one must get down to the business of writing these thoughts out into some intelligible sense.

I had a great time writing my Novel "Lovestruck Succubus." I plotted and manipulated the world of my characters until they cried mercy. I wrote sex scenes with abandon, cleverly inserting little bits of character development withing each one. I though I was so smart.

Then came the editing. I read through my material about eight times with a critical eye before turning it over to an editor. The editor came back with three pages of mistakes in grammar, spelling, usage, and timing. I realized maybe I wasn't so smart after all. And, I was beginning to hate reading through my own story.

Before the story was even published, I was dreaming of the sequel. I'm writing it now. Or, I should say, I'm re-writing it over and over again as it evolves from a simple linear story to some kind of magnus opus.

I hate writing, I love writing. I don't don't know what I feel about writing but I know I just can't seem to stop.

I never thought about the things you mention above until after I published my first novel and people started buying the book. Now I am constantly thinking about how to make my story appeal to readers. I write and publish independently so I don't worry so much about an agent but must say I'm my own worst critic. I think I've trashed more work since publishing my first novel then I ever wrote up to that point.

Hart Johnson said...

Oh, it's a great feeling... to just... write. I am having trouble at the mo and i think it's because there are too many constraints on it.

Alex J. Cavanaugh said...

My first book was like that - no pressure. My second manuscript - little more pressure now, because I'm writing for those who enjoyed the first book as well.

B. Miller said...

JL - Thanks for sharing, very inspiring! "I hate writing, I love writing" - I know EXACTLY what you mean!!

Hart - I love it! The shiny STILL hasn't worn off.

Alex - I can't wait to see what you do with the second novel!