Hi to any and all that are reading this. I want to thank you for following along with me into a second week of my writing goals. Writing can be a difficult endeavor, one that can seem pretty lonely when it’s just you and a blank, white page. That’s partially why I decided to make my goals for writing visible here on my blog; by sharing with you all, I can feel less alone while also holding myself accountable.
And with that said, I’m excited to say that I not only met my goal, but exceeded it in my second week. The extra words I wrote, while not helping to reverse my failure in week one, does in fact help me catch up to my overall word count goal. So, yay me!
I have to say that I faced a real challenge this week. It began with writing a scene that I knew would be coming in the second book of my new series, a scene that I regretted needing to write. But as any and all writers can attest to, not all the scenes we need to write are happy ones. I say need because stories require certain things to happen that can only be delivered in certain ways.
Even though the scene I was writing was an emotionally difficult one, it was one that I was well acquainted with. I had been waiting for this scene for weeks, planning it out in my head. In doing so, I was ready for it; and that readiness enabled me to pump that scene out with very little difficulty.
I was left with a knot in my stomach when the scene was done and set aside, a mixture of sadness and the excitement that comes with having finished what is subjectively a really good scene. That emotions was a weight around me, and that mixed with general stressors from work kind of zapped me for a couple of days. My mind was fogged over, making any writing a bit difficult.
I have a Neil Gaiman quote as wallpaper on my laptop, and it hits at the core of what I faced this past week. The quote is: “Being a writer is a very peculiar sort of job: It’s always you versus a blank sheet of paper (or a blank screen) and quite often the blank sheet of paper wins.”
It’s good to have it there, staring at me in times when the words don’t seem to flow so freely; to know that even a writer of Gaiman’s acclaim faces the same issues the rest of us do. Knowing that these little blocks only stay a little while also helps. Some people try to write through these blocks, but I never had any luck with it. Thinking it through and waiting for the fog to lift has been my best practice.
And when the fog cleared and it was time to write once more, I faced a different sort of challenge. The scene I was set to write was far less emotional, technical in nature, and the sort of writing that serves only to set up future scenes. The worst part for me is that I tend to overthink some aspects of things… and by some, I mean all.
This of course led me to question all the technical details of the scene, and I still question the need to even have this scene. I mean, does every little thing need to be on display in a book? This will be something I ponder for the next couple of months. Who knows? Maybe I’ll just cut the scene.
That’s the wonderful thing about writing. I can revisit the scene in a month or so, which I will inevitably do, and make a call then. I could cut the scene all together; or maybe I’ll find some magical way to make the scene better.
Revisions: it’s what writers live for (read with a heavy dose of sarcasm).
I will see you guys next week!