Fast and Furious and Kinda . . . Blah

You remember my last post about how I was working and writing so hard?

Oh, so much writing I was doing!

I was charging along in my mighty writing muscle car, drifting around the corners of abandoned parking garages like I was part of the Tokyo underground street racing scene. I was trying to get a full first draft done of my WiP as quickly as possible because I knew I was going to have to finish edits on Tabula Rasa come September.

And then I came to a screeching, tire-smoking halt. Because I was writing, as the French say, le crappe.

I think writing is part, “Oh, look at me being so clever” kinds of active, purposeful planning and part receiving something from those mysterious regions of your brain that routinely spit out weird dreams about playing snooker with interstellar space wombats. There’s something special and spooky about creativity, and you have to leave it some room to do its thing.

So, yeah, stories — at least mine — are generated by one part intention and nine parts who the hell knows what.

When I write too fast, I’m not allowing enough time for that “who the hell knows” part to kick in properly and work its mojo. The result? Feeling like what I’m writing is not fully realized. It’s two-dimensional; the fine details are missing. The atmospherics are non-existent. In short, it comes out kinda blah.

So. Tempted as I am to hurry things along, I shouldn’t. I mean, I wish I could pull a lever and increase word-donut production, but I can’t. Everyone has their comfortable pace for creating, and I haven’t been respecting mine.

And those edits have now arrived. But as it’s turned out, that’s been a good thing since I needed a break from the WiP anyway. When I get back to it, I’m going to slow down and hopefully the interstellar space wombats will show up this time.

How ’bout you? Been pushing up against your limits recently?

8 comments to Fast and Furious and Kinda . . . Blah

  • Warrior

    Yeah, I completely know what you mean… I’ve been trying to write a book–before I figured basically anything about it out. And it hasn’t been working to well. At least, I think I’m writing myself into a corner.

  • Darn those French, making me think I was being all sophisticated by writing le crappe…

  • “Everyone has their comfortable pace for creating, and I haven’t been respecting mine”
    Yes, sister. Treat your Muse kindly, or she’ll go have tea someplace else…

    • KLM

      Yes, my Muse was like, “What’s the sudden rush, whippersnapper?” The Muse does not like to be rushed.

      I’ve never been a big “daily word count goal” kinda person, and this just validates that even more.

  • Aha — this is very similar to what happens to me when I try to outline.

    I *can* write an outline for a story, as long as I don’t mind it being flat and boring.

    Sadly, the only way to create a really good story (for me) is to hash it out over a few months, wrestling my first draft like it’s an alligator, and in the end I STILL have a first draft that’s crap — but crap with potential. Crap that’s exciting.

    Writing second drafts is my favorite part of the game. I’ve already wrestled the alligator, discovered the story I’m really trying to write, and haven’t yet begun the nitty gritty of polishing and worrying about word count.

  • KLM

    Oh, yes, I can outline all day long. It’s not like I can’t plot. But it doesn’t mean the outline is going to work. For me it’s like deciding what I’ll have for lunch four months from now. So much depends on mood and if the mood’s not there, you might as well not bother.I don’t know until I’m deep in what’s the right direction to go, and I always seem to have to find the right direction by trying every wrong direction first.

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