Tuesday, 7 January 2014

Being a Writer Ain't Easy

I have read a lot of articles on writing.  

And I mean a LOT.  

How do you create the perfect villain?  How do you write the perfect ending?  How do you describe scenery so the reader doesn't want to rip their eyebrows off and run around their house screaming?  Ok, one of those isn't a real title.  
Writers talk about how difficult their job is and that it isn't at all what most people assume it to be.  People dream sitting down in a leather chair at a rich mahogany desk, sipping brandy and smoking cigars as they effortlessly type up an award winning manuscript in just weeks.  Dean Koontz and Stephen King are two of my favourite authors.  They can write a first draft in 90 days.  I haven't been able to do that but that doesn't mean that I will just give up.

In reality, most writers are staying up late, getting up early, trying to fit in moments of writing during the "normal business day", researching, reading endlessly, etc.  But none of that sounds bad to me.  

I love the entire writing process.  From the germination of the idea (the "what-if" moment), to research, to character profiles, to scene mapping (I'm a outliner-pantser ... and yes I can be both, dang it), to even the murdering of my little darlings (i.e. editing).

How does that saying go?  Things worth having are worth fighting for?  

I haven't had anything handed to me in my life.  Not that I have had a particularly rough life, by any means.  But I've had to work hard for everything that I have achieved.  I studied and worked hard to finish my education   I worked many hours at jobs that I did not like so I could buy a house with my fiancé.  And at my current job (which I do like) I do my best every single day to not only improve the member experience but to improve  the association as a whole. 

So ... I don't expect writing to be easy.  And it's not.  I have unfinished projects that I am having difficulty with right now.  Just as an example, I have put my heroine in danger and I'm trying to get her out of this predicament and I can't think of a smart way of doing it.  I don't want her to be rescued by another person, or have the villain slip up because they are too egotistical, or that they remembered that episode of MacGyver where he combined chewing gum, a shoe lace and turpentine to create a flamethrower ... I hate cop outs and I just won't do it.  Hence, being stuck.  But that's ok.  Once I figure it out, and it will be good, I want the reader to say "Ooooohhhhhhh, I never thought of that!".  

Is writing easy for me?  No.  But I'm willing to put in all the hard work that it will take to finish something that I can be proud of enough to try and get published.  If you find yourself nodding along with this article, trust me, you are not alone.

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