Finding the write words…

FrustrationFor the past week or so, I have been busy working on my novel. Not the one I mentioned in an earlier blog post. That one has been shelved, temporarily. This new one had already been researched and plotted out quite some time ago. I know… Why were you wasting time starting another when you had yet to finish the first? The reason for this is simple (clears the throat, nervously). The new work was originally formatted as a screenplay, but now I have chosen to adapt it as a novel, as well. I hope you’re taking notes because there will be a ten minute assessment at the end of this post.

Anyway, for the most part it has proved torturous. I am my worst critic at the best of times and allow myself very little slack. So this particular writing project was a lesson in pulling teeth, getting blood from a stone and any other cliché I can come up with. Despite knowing the direction it was meant to head, I really struggled to find the words to express what I wanted to say. So this leads me to conclude that I am:

a)     Just a bad writer and kidding myself I’ll ever be anything else, OR

b)    Don’t really have a story to tell.

You see the problem is that whenever you watch a documentary about a published author, they are invariably viewed perched at their computer tapping away quite happily for about 20 hours a day, relaying a stream of consciousness directly from their imagination to the printed page to create – after several drafts – a beautifully conceived manuscript.

Why can’t I do that or, more to the point, will I ever be able to do that?

Hey, ho! Don’t suppose there are any easy answers. I just have to keep going, and hope one day it will get easier.

If there is anyone out there who has experienced this and overcome it, please comment and let me know.

Image credit: macniak / 123RF Stock Photo

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6 Responses to Finding the write words…

  1. You are definitely NOT a) Just a bad writer and kidding myself I’ll ever be anything else OR b) Don’t really have a story to tell.

    There are very few people born with a stream of eloquent words flowing from our pens. In any case, genius is 99% perspiration and 1% inspiration. You learn to write well, just as Rembrandt learned to paint by being apprenticed to another artist. (He might have been apprenticed to a blacksmith, carpenter or plumber instead.) If it’s not going well for you now, that doesn’t mean it never will and everyone who reads your blog knows how hard you are working at this. Often when it seems that things are going particularly badly, you are learning the most. What would you gain if every piece of yours was published on the nod? I tell you, after a few years, you’d be squirming in embarrassment because your early mistakes were out in the open, rather than buried in a little-visited file on your computer.

    Keep going with the (second) novel. I too abandoned a novel about 18 months ago, because I wanted to change so many things in the early chapters that continuing became rather pointless and it was getting too long. I understand that many novelists restart after Chapter 11, but I’d got to about Chapter 35. Have you got a plan? Have you got a synopsis? In my opinion, you should be able to sum up a short story in one sentence (at a push two sentences), and a novel should be capable of being wrapped up in a synopsis of a three/four paragraphs.

    • JWow Admin says:

      Thank you so much for your compliments and words of encouragement. You’re absolutely right when you say that all, except the prodigies, have to go through the apprenticeship stage. Even when it feels like I’ve still a long way to go, if I look back to where I started off, I’m amazed at how far I’ve come and the progress I’ve already made. So each writing project I undertake and complete is part of the learning curve necessary to achieve success. You should revisit your novel with a fresh eye. There may be material you could salvage to start the project anew.

  2. Bernadette Davies says:

    Just keep going Julie, you have an amazing talent! xx

    • JWow Admin says:

      Thanks, Bernadette. I have to keep going. I can’t rest until I’ve proved myself, which seems to be taking some time.

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