The competition is unnecessary. Like a mosquito buzzing in my ear, tiny and insignificant but with a great big wholloping annoyance factor, I have tired of it mightily. Funny, that… having to tire of it… since I never entered any sort of competition in the first place. It was never a goal of mine. I did not sign up. I didn’t place myself out there and say, “Hey, I’m better than you.” There were no bets or dares or any sort of gauntlets thrown down. And yet, it’s glaringly obvious that it exists for you. Please. Stop. Quit wasting your time. Get a life. Your own would be preferable. Make some fresh footprints in the snow instead of constantly trying to walk in ones that already exist.

That being said… It’s Sunday and I’m writing. I’ve been struggling for the past couple of weeks, on one scene. One scene. I’m a perfectionist. I want to edit as I go but when I allow myself to do so, it usually results in a work in Non-Progress (WINP). A work whose progress fell off a cliff like Wile E. Coyote and splatted on the dried up verbage riverbed below.

So caught up in the editing, I tend to lose the plot somewhere along the way. It unravels like a half-finished afghan after the dog decides running off with your yarn is FUN and it does not matter that it’s still Attached! I have two of those WINP… unraveled carnage of word yarnage. Or is it three? I’ve lost count. I made a declaration to myself, this time: I would finish no matter what. But, for me to succeed, rules have to be involved.

Before, I did not outline. I sat down and I simply wrote. The story was there and I let it roll out as it wished. This was great… until about 60k words. Then the plot fizzled or I lost the original intent somewhere along the way. I have one of these sitting in a drawer. The plot is good, to a point. I just need to go back and rethink, rework, rewrite. This time, I outlined. A gloriously bullet-pointed loose outline of yumminess. I made it to the end game of beginnings. I have structure! Yay me!

Before, I allowed edits as I went. This meant I would spend days on one scene, editing and rewriting until it was superb. Of course, then the rest of the writing around that one superb piece looked like shit. And let me just say, when you lean down to smell a rose that’s surrounded by shit… your nose is in for one hell of a stinky disappointment. I couldn’t move forward. I have one of these sitting in a drawer. The plot is… okay, that one needs to go back to the drawing board completely. But I gained an interesting character or two who might be useable at a later date. This time… No. Editing. Not until I write the words “The End”. Then, I can release the editing bunny from his prison and he can go hare-raising nuts with his little red pen. It’s a struggle. That bunny, he’s not very nice. And he escapes, often. He’s a little Haredini with editing OCD.

Therefore, I’ve spent the last two weeks just trying to Finish The Scene. And accept that I will probably change it later. It’s the first struggle I’ve had of this magnitude with this WIP. I think perhaps I’ve hit the middle. If that’s the case, I will simply lie to myself and say, “Look! That one scene? That was the middle and now you’re past it.”

I made it through that one scene – word-by-word, sentence-by-sentence. I wrote four pages yesterday. A heap loads better than the four sentences I managed the week before and the two notes I managed a few days ago. The scene needs work but dang it, it’s done, and now I can move on to the next one. I'm hoping for at least four pages a day. There's the goal. There's the only gauntlet you'll see me throw down - one for me, contingent upon no one but myself. I'm the only person I'll ever try to out do. I'm my own competition. And that's why I'm happy with myself. I sure wish you could be too.
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1 Response
  1. Anonymous Says:

    I think you need some good muse intervention to help you along... call your sisters.. or friends.. they seem to be a little of help every now and then.