I’m still hammering my way through my latest WIP, which will eventually be the second book in what is, right now, an expandable trilogy.
Yes, book one still needs to be finished, thank you for the
nagging embarrassment gentle reminder. (Just kidding. No one cares but me, I bet. I’ve just been waiting for a long time to use that old strikethrough-the-text gag on my blog.)
I’ve been a little stymied though. Not for lack of ideas — at least, not that I can tell — but for time. I’ve been getting home later, and the days are more exhausting. There are a lot of changes going on and we’re all overwhelmed. Being understaffed because someone was forced into retirement and another person quit certainly didn’t help.
That being said, I work on it as much as I’m able, and I’m very close to finished. I was surprised, as I’ve pontificated before, at how fast this book came together without any more guidance than a legal pad, a pencil, and my own typing speed would enable. In about three months I’ve hammered out something close to a full-length novel (though again, I’m writing a story, not to word count, so I didn’t care if it ended up being very short or lengthy). That’s a new record for me, and it gives me a lot of hope for being able to finish more than a couple of books a year.
Not every book will come together this easily and this fast, of course. But if I’m really forcing it, it’s probably the wrong book for me, at least at the time. I can revisit any of them at any time. And while that’s an obvious statement for most people in the world, that’s a huge new statement for me. And it leaves me wondering what my writing future looks like, because I’m determined to write the story and not the rules.
I had a sorrowful moment not long ago though, when I looked through my old work and saw the strength of the prose. I don’t know if I can match that, and I’m not sure what changed. Most likely, practice. It’s tempting to revisit some of those old craft books, and just start trying my hand at flash fiction again.
But this day job has gotten more demanding and the effort required of me is greater and greater. For all of us here, but most people don’t have something they’d rather do waiting for them at home.
Still, having a thousand word limit was one of the best teachers I ever had. I had to find a way to communicate the essence, the images, the feel of what I saw without using up the story, so it forced a concision I’ve never faced before. And Lord knows, I love me some minimalism.
Anyway, I’m just checking in. I’ve been pounding the keyboard both at work and home, trying to get this stuff done, but only one of those has been a surprisingly joyful experience.
How’ve you all been?