Well, kittens, the Gantt chart I made says I’m supposed to write a rough outline of my novel by today. Instead, I shoveled snow for three hours, did some really important
“reading” that was crucial to the success of my novel, and washed dishes, a lot. Also,
my new rescue cat Edgar was yowling around the house, so I spent quite a bit of time yowling back in different tones to see if he could understand me.
The power of the magic motivation rock isn’t as powerful as my avoidance monster, but I learned I can communicate with cats.
I did manage to outline the first four chapters and do some character work in my head. I made a very important revision chart, outlining the steps for turning a rough draft into a polished piece of writing (which I’ll share later).
I got as close as one can to writing without actually writing.
My procrastination is coming down to this: I don’t have all the answers. Who are these characters? What do they want? What will happen next? Is this story even any good? #wasteofmylife I don’t want to write a single word unless I’m sure.
My undergrad writing instructor, Judy Hougen, used to tell me, “Don’t write what you know. Write until you know.” Being the control freak, A-type personality that I am, I think this advice is stupid, that unknowing is for lesser writers, but not me. I know what I’m doing.
Turns out, I don’t because I didn’t write much of anything, which is worse than writing shitily. You can fix bad writing. You can’t fix nothing. And writing nothing makes me feel like a BFF (big fat failure).
I’m a collage artist as well, which is easier. I don’t plan. I just glue whatever on a canvas until it “looks right.” I’m not over-controlling about it because if it’s ugly, I can glue another layer of pictures over the badness.
Writing is the same. I can rewrite, delete, expand, and take out words.
Intellectually, I know this. I know Judy is right. The best writing surprises even the author.
Emotionally, I can’t get my ass in the writing chair.
I don’t know what else to say. I need to get over this or change careers.
Because this is the most useless blog post ever, go check out this one. It’s about song writing but can be applied to any creative pursuit.
How do you live with the mess of writing? Seriously? How?