thoughts on time

Writing is a slow process for me. I’m sharing this for the benefit of other writers out there (I can NOT be the only one) who often bemoan how long you spend on your work in progress…and it’s still not quite right.

Even when I get time to write, it doesn’t necessarily alter the snail’s pace of some of my projects. Sometimes I end up using the time off just to figure out some important details about the character or the plot that will inform my next draft. This figuring out is absolutely necessary, but it doesn’t immediately result in many pages.

It’s frustrating. There are times when I think “Come on, just sit down and figure it all out. Just figure it out and write it down!” But it’s not as easy as that. Sometimes an idea needs to germinate; it needs to sit in the back of my brain while I listen to Green Day and watch Harry Potter movies and read folklore and myths and poetry. It needs to sit back there in my head and take root while I read novel after novel. And I’m taking notes even when I’m not physically taking notes – things are slowly connecting in ways they hadn’t, before. Sometimes I go down the wrong path, only to find myself losing interest as I write. Then I need to ruminate again, pin-pointing the strengths of a story and how to focus on those strengths. How to figure out a character’s ultimate motivations (there’s been A LOT of that this past week) or innermost desires.

I’ve done a lot of figuring out, recently – some of it I hadn’t even realized I needed to do. When I get another pocket of time, I’ll return to my notes, to my revision, and I’ll be ready to work. All is progress.

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Published in: on March 27, 2010 at 8:41 pm  Comments (1)  

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  1. Yes, I do bemoan how long my manuscripts take sometimes, but it is usually time well spent. Characters and plots benefit from steeping, but having a great critique group who kick me in the pants when things stall too long is even more helpful.


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