Friday, September 16, 2011

Bad, Bad Writer

I should have learned my lesson by now.

You can't be a writer if you don't write. This is what I've been telling myself for the last several days. I haven't really sat down with the intention of really getting anything done. Sure, my new project has been open and added to, and my finished book is opened for editing.

But I haven't accomplished anything worth boasting about. In fact, it's the complete opposite. It's my own fault. And I wonder what happened to my love of writing. It doesn't make much sense.

I look at my finished (it's written) MS and I try to remember where my love for the characters went. When I go back to read it, I just see all of my errors.

But, today something happened. My landlord decided to give me the ideal scenario. She wants my guy and I to buy her house. No down payment, no increase in monthly payments, and depending on the circumstances, she'd even grant us an allowance for our home owner's taxes. This was just too good to be true.

But I realized that it would require I get a job that pays something decent so that my guy and I could afford to fix it up the way we want. Due to my "ailment" I can't really afford to be under too much stress or have too many projects going at once. This means one of two things. I must finish my book and get it published so I can get a well-paying job or I figure out how to earn a decent income from my writing.

Either way, I need to finish editing my MS.

End of story.

I'd lost sight of the bigger picture. And I think that's the problem. I spend so much time trying to make sure I'm not dreaming too big that I forget to actually take time to dream at all.


  1. Sometimes you have to let the dream find you. But either way, you need to finish editing the MS. :)

  2. You can do and you will.
    Excellent news on the home, now plan for how to get it.

  3. I finished my manuscript and did nothing with it for 3 years. I had such a terrible pregnancy that although I had the time (and typing was actually one of the ONLY two things I could do) I didn't have the emotional capacity to deal with the feedback from the crit group, so it languished. Then I had a baby, then I was back at work with a baby... The only time I had to write was late at night, and I was too tired, I just wanted to do something mindless and relax. There was no love left in writing for me.

    Nothing was going to change unless I made it change and the change was simple. I bought a netbook. I use my travel time to write, and I've discovered that I do, in fact, love writing so much I arrive at work with a smaile on my face and a whistle on my lips. Well, if I could whistle. I really can't tell you what significant difference it has made well beyond the simple fact I now have time to write.

    I realise your circumstances are unique in many ways, and the solution is not always as simple as mine was.... but sometimes WE can have our cake and eat it too. We just need to work out the way that works for each of us.

    Although I made the decision to buy a netbook so I could write on the train, I didn't realise at the time just how big a positive impact on my life this would have. Such a little thing - such a huge consequence.

    Good luck with the property purchase. As much stress as building our house has been, I am so excited by the fact I now own a home. Even if it is a little draughty. Not to mention wet if it rains...

  4. It's daunting. And terrifying. But I'm convinced there's a lot of fun to be had with the editing, too. It's less automatic than the writing itself, sure, but it is still part of the creative process. An extension. You haven't stopped loving your characters, you're just bogged down in how much work it is to edit them into a completed work and thinking about it too hard.

    Ciara's right. Writing (or editing) is something you have to work into your life. And I know you - you've got plenty of time and space to do it. You just have to...actually do it. :P

  5. Sometimes an editing break from your one MS is a good one. I do this by little writing/editing challenges. Take an old cartoon re-write it as a short story and twist the plot a bit. Take a horrid Fan Fic or Flash fiction and fix it.

    Other times it is just setting a routine time for editing. I've heard some writers have time blocks in their day set aside.

    I have external cues for editing. Something crunchy, & bottled water. Always wear my "smart kid" glasses, jeans & a white button down or a Geek T-shirt. For me this sets my mind at the "am editing" stage.

    Congrats on the house though. That's wonderful.

  6. My father once told me I would never find success until I treated writing like a job instead of a hobby. Oh it's the best job ever (pay or no pay) but you really do have to devote yourself to it, and work at it. I blog daily so I never forget that I write. Every single day. It's part of who I the color of my eyes and the way I trip over my own feet. I wish you the best of luck with both your MS and your house. The fact that you wrote this post says you have that writer inside you.

  7. Nice post. I always find editing easier than writing first drafts. The latter is like giving birth: painful, yet profoundly rewarding. The former is variable: sometimes like cutting and pasting; sometimes recreating, but with the benefit of hindsight; and sometimes like putting a fresh coat a spackle on an already smooth wall to perfect it.