Down the rabbit hole
Yesterday I spent a small part of my day researching 2 in 1 tablet/laptops, reading about the structure of scenes, good dialogue…Almost half the day at the pool (my small 3 ft deep pool) on a float thinking about my character and where she was going, what she wanted, and who the antagonist really is versus who I originally thought he was, and then I spent the other part of my day writing. I went back to my WIP last night. By the time I went to bed I’d written almost 4200 words.
I had a good day. When I first opened the new project screen in Scrivener I felt excited. Like I was going on a new adventure, a bit like Alice must have felt when she went down the rabbit hole. Call me crazy, but every time I revamp or organize a WIP, I’m excited and then the excitement dissipates into the nether, and I’m left feeling overwhelmed, doubtful, and nervous. I read a book about how many first time novelist write SEVERAL beginnings but can’t seem to finish a novel. For over a year that was me. I managed to get my 50K word count for NaNo, but that was only almost half of a novel. Not a complete novel. That one went into the proverbial closet, the WIP shelved, and I went on to the next idea. A better idea. Yet I keep coming back to one of the two original ideas I had almost two years ago when I first sat down at the computer, after a long hiatus from writing.,
When I took that short break from social media, between being on the road with my husband, reading books, and thinking about my writing, and reading that book about why writer’s never finish a book, I realized something important I was afraid of success. Yes, I said that. If I actually managed to complete a novel then I had to worry about editing it. Once I edited it I had to worry about finding beta readers (which I haven’t a clue about), then I had do worry about whether to try to get it traditionally published or try self-publishing. My anxiety kicked in somewhere around the 1/4 to 1/2 mark of a novel and then I freeze.
I can’t worry about all of that when I’m writing. I have to begin at the beginning, write, write, write until I get to the end. and then stop and take a break. That’s all there is to it. It’s not impossible. I know it’s not. I’ve read enough free books on Kindle, enough traditionally published and self-published books, enough writing advice books to know that it isn’t impossible. Some books are adventures and they pull us into the book and we’re right there inside it. Chronicles of Narnia did that to me when I was elementary school.. Salem’s Lot did that to me when I was ten and I’ve been an avid Stephen King fan since. I’ll never be Lewis, or King, but I can be myself. And that self is actually a pretty damn decent, no good, writer. If I let myself be. If I’m not holding myself back by believing it’s not possible.
Regardless of how shitty this first draft is that I’m working on, I’m sticking with it until the very end. Until I can type or have my husband type, like Mike Noonan did in Bag of Bones, the END.