I’ve been doing a bit of writing lately that has gone unpublished — it is all for my GIANT work in progress, aka my novel that is in the middle of a painfully rough draft 2. I have just finished revising the second chapter and have come to some realizations about how writing a novel works. Or at least how it works for me.
So here goes…
- I often don’t feel like writing at all. Sometimes, when I get home from work, all I want to do is stare at Netflix and eat chocolate. There are days when I can’t get my brain out of a tired, heavy slump and back to looking at letters on a computer screen. It is hard enough to get myself to open the document, never mind actually produce something worthwhile. But on the days that I make a cup of tea, get my favorite, softest blanket out, and surround my body with pillows and notebooks, I am always grateful for it. I never regret writing, even if I really wasn’t in the mood to begin with. Writing always cheers me up. I never leave the page feeling like it was a poor use of time.
- Writing is exciting. I have been writing for my entire life, but I never would have used the word “exciting” to describe it until I tried my hand at fiction. Most of the time, I sit down before a scene and decide a certain thing needs to happen. Then I begin typing and something entirely different happens. Very rarely do I say what I intended to, and usually what actually comes out is better (and more fun). I deviate from the plan a lot in fiction writing, and it is honestly the best part about it. Not even I know the ending until I’ve written it.
- I don’t really know what I am doing. Sometimes, I write a sentence and I love it and think, “That is worth reading.” Other times, I look at the entire book and wonder if any of the 50K+ words are actually good. There are many moments of doubt, but more moments of happiness when I get excited. Because I wrote it, it exists, and that is magic, even if I’m not sure how or why I did it.
- I’m not really sure what the novel process should look like. It’s different for everyone, I suppose. I’m just plugging along and the only constant I have is to just keep writing. (Picturing Dory from Finding Nemo in my mind right now…)
So these are some of the things I have discovered about writing as I dig into the next draft of my novel. How about you? Anyone else still deep into their NaNoWriMo project?