jeffsoesbe (jeffsoesbe) wrote,

a nice little slump is a bump that goes thump for the chump

So affinity8 mentioned in an LJ comment "Where's your thing_in_150 posts, man?". And I thought "oh yeah, I've been bad about posting my word count" so I went back to my writing tracker spreadsheet and I realized ...

I haven't been writing.

I've only produced about 600 new words since coming back from the Lincoln City Workshop one week ago. I haven't been revising either, as I have three revision projects (for LSC, for Orycon Workshop, and for WOTF) due Real Soon Now.

So what have I been doing? Family things, work demands, math contest organizational things, volunteering things (like spending all day yesterday at Stanford). But that's really no different than usual.

What I've really been doing is noodling around, procrastinating, watching TV, thinking about writing, everything but actually writing. And it comes down to The Fear. The Fear of not being able to do it to the new level I now realize I need to do it.

My writing process took a big hit at the Lincoln City Workshop. My current process is something I can describe as the "high level fly by" with decent plot and dialogue, and occasional dips into interior monologue. But what was called out at Lincoln City (and rightfully so) was my lack of complexity in setting, the Real Details that pull a reader into a story and make editors (aka "super-readers") take notice that they're just going to have to read the whole thing and see what happens.

The recent successes didn't necessarily help, because the internal analysis goes something like "those were pretty good, mabye it won't ever get that good again." Which, when I think about it rationally, is silly. In the end, determination, and drive, and discipline about work, and trying and failing and trying again are huge factors in improving ability.

The desire to integrate this new "spinning plate" into my writing process has stalled me tremendously. But now that I realize what's going on, I know I can push through it. As jaylake says, a cure for problems in writing is "more writing". That's not "more writing" in terms of volume, but in complexity and degree of difficulty and challenge.

thing_in_150 can look forward to more word counts again. And the spreadsheet can look forward to something besides zero being entered! And no, I don't consider myself a "chump". But I needed a rhyme :-)
Tags: process, writing

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