Wednesday, March 3, 2010

Torn

So, today, dear readers, this blog is all about me! Kidding. Maybe.

My question: how do you do it (as in writing)?

My problem: wait, let's get back to this in just a sec.

My Writing To Do List for the Immediate Future:
  • Finish current work in progress
  • Write fabulous query letter
  • Find Agent with Fabulous Query Letter
  • Revise next project I want to query
  • Revise endless other projects
  • Work on new projects
  • Have a life

My problem - yes, now we get to the crux (perhaps conflict (ha!!)) of this post - is quite simple: I have three new folders in Word that contain ideas for new projects. Okay, two of them aren't that recent, well, they were created in 2010, but one of them was just created Monday night. I have three potential works ready to progress just screaming at me for attention. If anyone has very young children, you'll know what I mean. If not, just try putting your overweight cat on a diet and see how she reacts. Squeak, squeak, squeaky, squeakity-squeakity-squeak-squeak-squeak . . . at 1 AM, 2 AM, etc. Arrrrgghhhhh!!!!

Anyhow, I have a ton of other things to do - yes, I know all about balance - but all I really want to do is write the new projects. I want to immerse myself in the characters and situations. I want to lose myself in my writing.

The words don't always flow, people, and the ideas are often few and far between. Oh, the struggles I've gone through when trying to come up with a new idea. The struggles, I tell you, the struggles. So, here and now, I have a project I'm about to finish and three eager little projects waiting in the wings (well, four if you count the one that will probably take me a few more years to finish because of the emotional intensity of the project).

I want to write these projects. I need to write a query. I want to write these projects. I need to revise a different project. I. Want. To. Write. This. Project. Arrrrrrrrrrggggggggggghhhhhh!!!

So, I'll find balance at some point, in some way, just divide up my nights a little bit more than they are now, but . . .

. . . how do you do it when you have new, eager little ideas just waiting to explode onto paper, and you have many other steps (query, revise, wait eagerly for dream agent to contact you, etc.?) in the writing process to complete as well????

S

10 comments:

Carol Anne Strange said...

I so relate to this post, Scott. I'm constantly tempted by new creative writing project ideas and it can be a distraction. In some ways, it's good as it motivates me to finish what I've started so that I can go on to the next project. As for keeping a balance, it's a constant pre-occupation! Hope you are magically well. :)

Tess said...

your first line of this post made me laugh out loud. Maybe. ha! that Maybe proves you are a writer. very clever, Scott.

And, I've never had a new idea pull at me like that. It's the bain (is that how you spell that?) of my existence. I have to drag ideas out of my mind kicking and screaming. Once we get them on the table, they are pretty well behaved. But getting them there ... well, that's a challenge.

so, I understand the difficulty of balancing these things, but I've never quite experienced it as you are. I don't know if I should be jealous or happy for you.

I'll choose both :D

Scott said...

Carol Anne - normally, I'm so good about focusing on one project from start to finish. Then, there are the lag times when I - like Tess - have to pull ideas out of my head kicking and screaming. For whatever reason, 2010 has been the year for ideas to pour out of my brain. Perhaps the old steel trap has a few holes in it! Ha!

Tess - me, a writer? The horrors! Ha! Normally, the ideas don't pull at me like they are right now. I have no idea why it is happening, just that it is, and the urge to just write is stronger than the urge to query and/or revise and/or both! I know I need to query and revise, but . . . I just want to write, so I'm struggling fiercely with myself right now. Geesh!

Lady Glamis said...

Good questions, Scott!

I don't usually have new ideas bursting at the seams for me. In fact, it takes me forever to come up with ideas. But, I do have one waiting now. It has been on the back burner for a few months. I let myself write the first little bit, then I set it aside so I can finish my current project and get it out there. Right now I'm working on a synopsis. Don't forget you should probably have one of those as well as a query. I wish I had written mine earlier!

Good luck balancing. It's just something you have to figure out. My advice is to not start anything else until you've got one project completed and floating out there waiting for a bite.

Davin Malasarn said...

For me my passion for writing comes in spurts. So, when I'm feeling like you do now, I often just give in. If I dedicate an entire evening, or an entire weekend, or an entire week, I usually get that initial drive out of my system, then I can approach my projects more logically again, prioritizing then. So, maybe one night you can just let yourself write and write and write, as much as you can. You might be able to calm down after that.

Harvey K said...

I always entertain the small nagging new ideas, because you never know what could can come of it.

But I set an egg timer when I do it, so I don't get bogged down. It forces me to get the core of the idea on paper, and out of my head.

Then I return to revising, editing, bleh, blah, blargh.

Elana Johnson said...

Hmmm... Great question. My words don't come as easily as it sounds like yours do. They have to stew and stew, and then one morning I'll wake up and they're just there.

So that's when I write them. I don't write in order, and rarely plan, so when the scene comes, it comes. And I write it.

And that's what I do. If multiple scenes keep coming, then I know I've got a novel. And I piece everything together and write it.

I wish I could help you with the screaming kids thing. I so get that. And it's not fun. :)

Scott said...

Everyone - the rush of ideas isn't normally this intense. I go for long periods where I can't think of a thing to write about. : )

Lady Glamis - thanks for the synopsis reminder. My brain can explode with ease now! I know I need to do one of those, but it's been on the backburner. I normally write down the initial idea, a few scenes, character names if I have them, and then go on with my life. Lately, the drive to write is pretty intense . . . and yet I know there are other parts of the process that need my attention as well. Normally, I'm fine with a bit here, there, and everywhere. This time, not so much.

Davin - I'm thinking I should give in to this desire and just write, forget the query, the synopsis (thanks again, Lady Glamis ), revisions, and everything else, until the burning desire dims just a bit.

Harvey - I'm usually pretty good at entertaining the new ideas briefly, creating a folder, basic premise, and then back to everything else. This little entertaining bit has turned into a long, drawn out - but fun - affair.

Elana - the words don't always come this easily. They just are right now. Perhaps Jupiter is in retrograde with Mercury and . . . well, I don't know why, but they are flowing and I guess I'm just going to give in to that flow for right now and see what happens.

S

Lady Glamis said...

Well, if you do decide to write one, go here:

http://betweenfactandfiction.blogspot.com/2008/09/how-to-write-synopsis.html

Jemi Fraser said...

It is so tough. Even if you put the ideas in a file, it's not the same as working on the right now!

I've tried making myself do query/editing work for 30 minutes before I get to write. Unfortunately with my nutty life, 30 minutes is sometimes all I get!