thoughts on a late Thursday night
Or, you know, an early Friday morning, but let’s not get too picky…
I haven’t had much time or energy or brain power to work on actual book writing lately, so both Book Wolves and Game of Choice (and oh lord, I need to find a better working title for that second one, or else I’m going to start calling it Married with Mercs) have been backburnered for a long time. And I don’t know if it’s because it’s spring (ha!) or just the fact that my stay in Wales is over and I’m almost done with the BA and I’m starting to get slowly sucked into the yawning pit of ohgodwhatdoyoumeanIhavetochooseaschoolandaprogramandwritearesearchproposal? pre-MA application anxiety, but my brain’s creative bits have started stirring again, and I kindasortareally want to start working on the novels again (and possibly actually carry on with the work to some point other than that nebulous “I’m working on a novel” that so many people are at.
It’s not that I haven’t been writing, because I have! And it’s original fiction, too, since I don’t really write fanfic. But all those stories are of the pisanie do szuflady (Polish, literally “writing to the drawer,” meaning not for publication or for anyone else) variety. Well, they get posted on the internet sometimes, but I write them for the pure fun of them, and I don’t really have any interest in trying to turn them into something publishable.
Anyway. I started writing this post for a totally different reason, and as usual got distracted (but then again, tangents and digressions, hello): the always-awesome Chuck Wendig, whose writing posts always provide inspiration and some much-needed laughs, wrote a post about plotting: Fuck The Straight Line: How Story Rebels Against Expectation. It’s a post about writing, but it really resonates as a post about living, too. And I think that’s what makes it even more profound. Knowing that it’s not just our characters who get to escape the straight line, that we can do it, too, that’s a hell of an inspiration.
Writing advice is always tricky, because not everything works for everyone, and what works for me may make someone else dig in their heels because that’s not how their process works. But the important thing is that through reading (notice I’m not saying “following”) things like this, we can actually figure out what our process is. Because otherwise? We’re really just flailing about and shouting into the void, rather than getting our shit together and doing something to actually achieve our goals.