I envy those writers who still use a pen and paper to get their words down. Writing by hand has a very warm quality to it — like choosing to listen to vinyl over an mp3. One of my professors always recommended starting by hand, in a very special book dedicated to writing. I never listened to him.
Then no matter where you are, in a crowded restaurant or on some desolate street or even in the comforts of your own home, you'll watch yourself dismantle every assurance you ever lived by. You'll stand aside as a great complexity intrudes, tearing apart, piece by piece, all your carefully conceived denials, whether deliberate or unconscious. And for better or worse you'll turn, unable to resist, though try to resist you still will, fighting with everything you've got not to face the thing you most dread, what is now, what will be, what has always come before, the creature you truly are, the creature we all are, buried in the nameless black of a name. And then the nightmares will begin.
Inspiration strikes in strange places: sometimes you have to hunt it down, and sometimes it lands in your lap like a brightly coloured, ticking package just waiting to go off. I wonder if I like writing so much because it encourages me to research weird stuff. Partially I wonder if it’s because I like to magpie curiosities in Evernote for use later. The strangest collection of seemingly useless information appears in the most bizarre fashion in my fiction sometimes.
It’s springtime! Snow is melting, the sun is out, and I’ve had a great “maker” weekend where all I’ve done is write, design, and further develop a couple of projects I’ve had going. A few days ago I wrote about taking the first steps towards establishing my author branding. The idea solidified a couple of days back, and so began three nights of furious illustration.
I had a rough night a few days back. Office squabbles. I managed to offend someone unintentionally, which resulted in back biting and catty sniping and word getting back to my boss (which we both subsequently laughed at, and opting for a direct approach addressed the matter head on by addressing the offended parties) which resulted in more back biting and catty sniping but to my face this time. At which point I gave up. Team player? Only if the game we’re playing is one of those Mayan suicide runs where the losing team gets sacrificed to the winners’ gods in the end.
The problem with novel writing is that there are constantly a bunch of things you need to keep warm on a back burner someplace in your brain or you forget all about they whys and the wherefores and its easy to get lost. I sometimes forget why I’m doing this — writing this book — on the particularly hard days when it’s not going well and that little voice of self-doubt says the work is only a mix of vanity and self-flagellation and my time could be better spent actually living life instead of imagining someone else’s.