When you hear the word ‘writer’ … what do you immediately picture?
An author scribbling away furiously at a notepad, steam rising visibly from the paper? A man, puffing leisurely from his pipe, occasionally exclaiming, “My word, that’s a good sentence!” and writing it down on his ever-present trusty notebook? A woman, modern with bracelets and rings aplenty, a chic scarf wrapped around her neck tapping with manicured fingernails on her keyboard?
Or do you picture someone who sits down, pulls up a word document, stares dazedly at it for a moment or two and then promptly surfs the internet?
‘Cause that person above? Yep, that’s me.
Believe it or not the times when I write the most is when I don’t have access to the internet, (but I need the web for research! Yeah, totally. Because news websites really are brillIant helps to writing a medieval fantasy book) or when my brain decides to cooperate, (which happens all the time, it’s actually amazing how many hundred of thousands of words it allows me to turn out. I am in no way telling a blatant falsehood).
My writing comes in fits and starts. It isn’t one steady flowing stream of amazing dialogue, sweeping action and delicate descriptions. No, I have off days and on days. Days in which I spout a couple hundred words, or one word, or a thousand words.
I can’t say: “the set method to getting my creative juices flowing is one, spin on my head, twice. Two, Drink a cup of tea with precisely three tablespoons of fat-free milk. Three, do finger stretches, and finally step number four, command my fingers with the words, type, my minions!”
Nope. Uh uh.
It doesn’t work like that.
Some days I’ll write one project, other days I’ll write in another. (though it’s time I knuckled down and focused on one … more on that another time). Some days I write, other days I [cough] don’t write at all [cough].
But … I’m also a firm believer in that I can write anything if I set my mind to it. Seriously. Even the project which feels like I’m banging my head against a horrible wall, a horrible brick wall. Perhaps it is like that time when you got a stitch when running; the oh so comforting advice you were given? Run it off.
So maybe the secret to writing is actually step number four: command my fingers with the words, type, my minions!
The conclusion of this long and rambling post?
Write it off!
(and an extra exclamation point, for good measure)