So much of writing is…well…not as inspired as it could be. Those of you who spent your time spinning words into tales of love, adventure, and suspense know what I mean. You have the story in your head, you know where you want to go with it, know exactly how it is going to end. You understand when to make the pressure within the story build and just when to make that final climatic scene. It is all there inside your head, mapped out and ready to go. It is perfect.
It is also something else. Work! Yeah, I said it. We all write and, for those of us who haven’t yet made it, we have one thing in mind. I don’t want to work. I want to write for a living. That euphoria wears off pretty quickly when it is finally drilled into your thick skull that writing is work. Writing twenty to a hundred thousand words is really not all that hard. But writing that many good words is very difficult even when you have the story mapped out in your head. It can be a struggle to make what you know in your head translate to the pages in front of you. Then, when you finally get there, then you have to go back and edit. As every writer knows, editing is no more exciting though every bit as essential as weeding a garden. If you don’t pluck the weeds from your manuscript, it will never be a story.
Now, that being said, I know I make it sound as if there is no reward in writing. It is, of course, not true. Bringing a good story home is awesome and well worth the effort despite all the hard work. It is very gratifying.
But it is not the best part. There is another part, the early part, the part when the story is new, still developing in your head, well before it is “mapped” out that is the most exciting time of the writing process. While working on my latest writing project, I wrote this in my notes:
New update 2-2-13. This fucking thing is taking shape, coming to life inside of me.
It’s the burn of a new story, a new idea, and, for a writer, more exhilarating than anything imaginable. It is like chasing after you first ever love and that feeling you get when you know that what you want is just around the corner.
I write some things and never get The Burn, but when I do, oh man I wish I still smoked. It is just that good.
Do your stories make you burn?
Happy Birthday, Gran.
Rest In Peace