perils with writing and whatnot
If you read my Wednesday post, you already know that I’m switching to a once-a-week entry for the summer. I may keep it up through the months of autumn too. I’m hoping to get a better rhythm going with the book I’m attempting to write.
I’ve thought of myself as being a moderate risk-taker. I don’t seem to have any problems defending myself other than through the physical limitations I can’t ignore. I’ve even gone as far as defending my husband using angry words to get him what he needs. Don’t say one thing negative about my son or stepdaughter either. You’ll get more than an earful from me. And it doesn’t scare me in the slightest.
So why is it that I’m having such a hard time being daring in my writing?
What is it that’s holding me back?
I know what it is, of course. I just don’t want to admit it, even to myself. After all, I have my pride, as misplaced as it may be. The buzz word for it these days is belief. Someone would say that I have a belief that just isn’t true and it’s an obstacle for me. Sorry, but the word, for me, does not mean that at all.
The word I think should be used is perception. And it isn’t false or true. There isn’t a right or wrong with this word. There’s only preferences, opinions.
My perception isn’t in sync with what I want from myself. I’m being held back by habits of behavior that I had thought I had shaken loose from. Obviously, there are a few that still linger. Is there a way to be rid of them forever? Truthfully, I don’t know.
My first step to whatever freedom I can have from these perceptions is to mentally disassociate myself from the perceptions of others, in particular, the ones I feel closest to. I need to stop assuming someone has the right answer for me just because I respect them. I need to listen to me, not them.
The next step will be to make sure I incorporate my own perceptions into my life. I’ll let you in on a little secret here. I’m already doing this to a small extent. I just have to expand who I think is me into the rest of my current life. Notice that I said current life. What I really mean is my life at this moment. Trying to look beyond the right here and now is foolish. Anything could happen in the next moment to change everything.
The third step is to bring it into my writing. I want to be daring and fearless with it. It should be as easy as placing your hands on the keyboard and just starting to type away, but it isn’t. My conscience can play such mean tricks on me. It’ll get me worrying about the most ludicrous things. [What if she can see herself in this character. Will she suit me?] [Is using a few obscenities okay? I don’t know. But if I don’t, the character isn’t what I created. Still…] My conscience and I have a terrible time getting along sometimes. Maybe I should hand over a little cash and tell her to go buy some new shoes or something.
The novel I’m working on, as if there’s any others anywhere, is about a woman in her mid twenties finally starting a new career after obtaining her Master’s Degree. This protagonist is a conglomeration of people I know or have known. I’ve taken the flaws of couple of them and the good stuff from others. I want to make her as daring as I want to be. Taking the time to think this all out is one of my biggest misconceptions. When I first started with this “little” project, I had no idea about how involved I must get to get my characters to come alive.
Winter Bayne, a writer and fellow blogger, has been giving me tips about writing as she learns them. She’s a real sweetie. She says she’s having the same problem as I am. Her solution: get more detailed, and more detailed, and still more detailed about who your characters are. Yes, I know she’s right. How many blog posts have I read about character outlines, profiles, developments, and arcs? So many I can’t remember. I don’t think I have ADHD. At least I haven’t been diagnosed with it. Although, it could be one of the bonuses I received with my disability. Such is life.
So how do I get through these three steps?
1. There’s an app for Windows that gives the person a subject to write about every day. Would doing this exercise instill the idea that my own perception of things is just fine and is worthwhile? It’s got to be better than doing daily aspirations. (I think they’re moronic.)
2. Get more courageous in my daily life. I say I a semi-recluse because everyone I know is telling me I shouldn’t do this alone and I shouldn’t do that alone. So I wait until someone’s available to be with me. Why, in the world, do I do this to myself? Most of the things I want to do I can do just fine on my own. Listen to me first!!!
3. I want to keep the email communications with Winter going because, despite the age difference (I’m old enough to be her mom.), I think she’s just a few steps in front of me on the journey of writing. She may leave me in the dust soon, but until then, I have this feeling that we need each other to let lose. And it could be because of the age difference.
Did you notice that I didn’t mention housework? I’m sick of discussing it. As much as I don’t want to do it, and sometimes is difficult for me to do, it still has to be done. Enough of the yik-yak about it.
Oh yeah! Before I forget — I changed all of my WordPress.Com subscriptions to weekly. I’m going to try it and see if I’ll get the digest for you who blog here. If I don’t, I’ll switch back to daily.
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