Friday, August 5, 2011
Before I Decided to Become a Writer
I was a much more diligent writer before I decided to become a writer. When it was only me, a pad of paper and a nice black pen, I wrote my story every time a new scene played out in my head. In the car, in the tub, in the middle of the night. There was my pen and paper and I wrote, just so I could get past that scene and find my way to the ending. I wanted to know the ending.
Sure, it took 3 years, but I ended up with two manuscripts and characters I love to this day. I wonder if it's because I wasn't writing a novel, I was just telling myself a story.
Then I decided to become a writer, like edit and type and pursue publishing.
Now I can write a book in a couple months and edit it in a couple more. In six months I can have what it first took me four years to achieve. Yet somehow the entire process has become so much more complicated. Instead of flipping through the last couple pages of notepad and start writing I must wait to have 'alone' time, fire up the laptop, read the last chapter (or the whole WIP if it's been a while), replay my recent scenes in my head and begin typing. By that time it's either midnight or someone has put an end to my 'alone' time and I wrap up with a whole lot of nothing.
I must say, when I do write, I mean really write, I mean power through 4k words a day until I have a cool 90k MS, it is way 'better' writing than what was on that notepad I started with. My writing is improving, but not my diligence. I suppose that happens when one turns a love into a job, or a potential job at least. I try to remind myself of those 4 years before I had any polished MSs. At worst, with all the delays and distractions, I'm beating that rate at least. Besides, when I stop being a 'free agent' and actually find an agent, perhaps 'alone' time will become 'work' time and will be easier to achieve, or maybe staying up till 3am will feel more justified. Either way, this writer is keeping on the typing on, even when I disappear for months at a time.
Maybe I'm not writing on that old pad of paper every free moment I get, but those scenes still play in my head and are much more patient at awaiting my writing them these days. Power typing has replaced 'just a minute' jotting, but I'm still getting to that ending, one word at a time.