Monday, October 20, 2008

Toes, Fabulous; Writing, Crap

*****

I’m in a funk lately. None of my writing projects seems to be going quite right. The last scene of Folly’s chapter one needs work. The flash piece I started in Rhinelander over the summer is…not quite right. I’ve shared it with writing buddy Jane and she says she likes it. But something about it just…isn’t right.

It has me wondering: why can’t there be some universal rule about writing that, when things aren’t right, we know to check a certain thing and—VOILA!—we arrive at the answer. Or why can’t someone invent the Revise-O-Matic? We plop in the rough draft, press a button, and –WHAMMO!— out spits a polished manuscript. But I guess that’s the thorniest bitch about writing: it’s never easy. If it is, I know better than to trust it.

Personally, I think it’s the pressure that’s getting to me. I’m a one-track thinker and having two projects really messes with me. And deadlines are doing me in. I need to get both these pieces done before I go to Vegas next week. But I sit down and don’t know where to begin. I’m on overload.

I have no answers. Vegas is looming and I’m excited. In the meanwhile, I need to clear the decks. After the two projects, my top priority should be spending this week thinking of what I want to research while I’m in Vegas. Instead, I spent the morning giving myself a pedicure. My toes look great, but my writing is in shambles. It makes no sense, but the whole writing process rarely does. The biggest mystery: why we do it at all.

4 comments:

Brenda ND said...

You're going to Vegas? Super. I think funks are all part of the writing process, the winter period of the growing season, but still I hate them. They're so frustrating, especially when it seems you're not getting anything done. Anyway, have fun in Vegas!

Stephen said...

The biggest mystery: why we do it at all.

Because the gods say so. There are times when I ask the same question. It's interesting that nobody repsonds, but I still hear the answer: I AM COMPELLED TO, THAT'S WHY! Some things are just in us. Call it genetics, if that helps. If not, call it something else. Whatever it is, though, it just is.

Does that sound Zen enough?

Greta said...

Brenda, I'm thrilled silly that you stopped by. You're a good pal :) I like the way you phrased that--the winter season of the writing process. As though our stories are dormant, but still undergoing their own silent transformations. Nice analogy.

Stephen, you're super Zen. I know exactly what you mean. Sometimes it amazes me to see how my whole life has led me to this point. I've been hooked on writing since first grade. I still remember holding those huge little kid pencils and trying to form letters and words.

Brenda ND said...

Are you still in Vegas? Hope you're having fun. Happy Halloween.