Friday, January 06, 2017

Feeling My Way Back

So, that was two weeks in Japan well-spent.  My husband, son and I spent the trip checking out temples, shrines and historical sites and having a lot of fun.  We spent Christmas at a hot springs town in Nagano, and New Years watching a fox parade at a shrine in Tokyo.  It was amazing and exhausting.

Unfortunately, I didn't get much writing done, or even think about my project much, which leaves me a bit lost now that I'm home and wanting to work on it again. I feel lost, a sensation I'm hoping will dissipate along with my jet lag.  Falling asleep at six in the evening and waking up at one in the morning does not bode well.

On my trip, I started reading On Writing by Stephen King.  He says a lot of things that I've heard before, but I'm finding a lot of his advice helpful and encouraging.  It really got me excited to get started again, but the fog I'm encountering is a little discouraging.  Also, I am super tired, which probably doesn't help.

My plan is to push through the rest of my rough draft, even if it's super rough.  I want to get it and maybe a second, complete draft, if not final, done before 2018.  I know I probably won't stick with this, but I need to stop leaning on what other people think, put in the work and get it done.  King's advice on the first draft is to write it with the door shut on the rest of the world.  The second draft is when you let at least a few other people in.  I need to take that advice.

I need to focus on this draft and what I want it to do.  Obviously, I need to work on the technical parts, word choice, style choices, repetition, general stylometry.  But none of that matters if the meat of the story isn't what it should be.  If I can make this story stronger, I should.  And I think I can do that by focusing on vision rather than the expectations of others. 

So, I'll give that a try and see how it goes.


Anonymous said...

Yes. First drafts are for telling yourself the story, and later drafts are for getting it ready to tell others. I've heard it said that rough drafts are just shoveling sand into a sandbox so that later you can build sandcastles. Keep going! And I know exactly what you mean about it being hard to get back into a story after time off. But give yourself some time and soon you'll be back to where you want to be. Happy writing!

K. Esta said...

I remember reading Pythagoras Syndrome on Jukepop. It was one of the few I followed consistently. I think there is a good story there and I wish you the best of luck with it.

I abandoned my Jukepop project long ago and moved on to other things, and I'm currently reading Stephen King's On Writing for the second time ;-)

If you're looking for readers (when the time comes to open the door) I'd be willing.