Sorry if you came here for advice on unclogging your drain. Go down the hall, turn left, and through the automatic doors. Plumbing is the second blog on the right.
Ok, whoever is left… Sorry if you came here for advice on anything. I have none today. In fact, I’m using my blog for a neurotic confessional (which is much less interesting than an erotic confessional. That’s also a different blog). Still reading? Wow, you must be some kind of a weirdo.
I’m about to take the plunge. That is, I’ve been talking about writing a novel for ages now, tossing the concept around in my head and fleshing it out with characters and major events, including the ending. I’ve done a bunch of research. I’ve got a mental image of the story (I don’t do outlines). I’m finally ready to start writing.
Writing something else I mean.
Yup, I’ve been putting this thing off for a year and was determined to get cracking any day now. Then three words randomly popped into my head. I took out my laptop, typed those three words (I risk bad juju by saying what they are) and banged out a short story, total pantser style. I planned to polish it and send it out to a magazine or fiction site, but a voice in my head kept saying “Kill! Kill! Kill!”
Luckily, I usually ignore that voice – except in the case of centipedes in the basement. But the other voice, the one I can’t ignore, said, “There’s more to this story.”
I showed the short piece to a professional writer friend. She read it and said, “There’s more to this story.”
Spontaneously, stupidly, perhaps potential-career destroyingly, I’m putting the first project on a shelf and turning this short story into a novel… without the slightest idea what is going to happen past page 14, where the short ended. The rest is a blank. I’m going full pantser this time!
Oh, I say career destroyingly because I’ve already written two manuscripts that didn’t fit a specific genre and found out how little interest agents and publishers have in such things. I told myself a few years ago that I am only going to write one more manuscript and, if I can’t generate interest, I’m done. That’s why I came up with the dark science-fiction concept I’ve been researching and planning for the past year and a half. Play it smart, put myself in a box, and hope for the best.
But that’s not the story I’m going to write. The story I’m going to write is… I don’t know, because all I have is three characters and a concept. I’m just going with my gut.
I am so not looking forward to the agonizing pangs of self-doubt that will take over my life soon. They’re already starting. I’m already telling myself it’s a stupid idea no one will want to read about. I’m already sure it will be a plotless disaster. I’m already lining up a sledgehammer so I can smash my laptop in a supreme act of catharsis.
Dang, isn’t it fun being a writer?
Not my most creative idea, but it fits: