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Writing in a Rut. (Language)

As I mentioned in another post, I've started a novel. Things are not going so well in that novel, and that's an understatement. Somehow, I've forgotten how to write. Hell, I'm not so sure I ever knew how the way it's been the last few days.

The concept is good. Any writer worth calling a writer could work with it and make it an excellent story. There's a rock solid plan, there's a likeable character in a tough spot, and there's a lot of good story there to chew on. I just can't write it. Every sentence seems so fruitless at this point. Each begins with a character name or a personal pronoun, and if I step into dialog, it's right out of a cheesy 1930's movie that people didn't even watch in the 1930's.

I call myself a writer but the truth is that I'm not sure it's not an insult to every writer that can write. When the best line I can come up with is an impotent and toothless one that isn't worth the digital data it occupies, I have to ask myself whether I should keep wasting my time and that of those around me.

One of my local friends said that there are few things worse than not having a good idea. I disagree because there are worse things. One of them is having an excellent idea and not being able to write it as well as it deserves. The main problem is that it's not an idea that I think could be communicated easily so that someone else could write it. I see every line of the story, and I can't even think of how I want to tell it, much less how I could give the idea to somebody who could write it.

Okay, so let's say I can get this thing written. That's 1% of what it needs to ever be successful. First, it's going to need an edit. Of the 2200 words I have, it could probably live with half of them gone. So, by the time it's to 80,000 it's only a 40,000 word story. Okay, so now it's going to need probably 30,000 more strong words to be even classifiable as a novella. I write them, edit 15,000 away. Write 15,000 more, take 7,500. Write 7,500, take half. Keep on until I write two words and remove only one. Now, query letter time, but be careful because if I'm not making an agent drool, I'm wasting his time and mine.

Agent 4,634 decides it sucks, but not as badly as the last thriller query letter he's read, so he asks for a full manuscript. Great. I send it, it sucks, he hates it. Back to square one writing more queries. Yay, I finally get the manuscript on the desk of someone who's not mad at the world. She shops it out to her network of publishers and they tell her to tell me that it's shit wrapped in ugly wrapping paper that smells like a skunk's ass fell and was made love to by a bunch of pervert buzzards.

Back to square one. So on and so forth until I finally become a hermit who wears jogging pants and sweaters 24/7 because there's no feminine warmth in his life. Oh wait, already there.

Shoot me now.

Comments

Each begins with a character name or a personal pronoun, and if I step into dialog, it's right out of a cheesy 1930's movie that people didn't even watch in the 1930's.

When the best line I can come up with is an impotent and toothless one that isn't worth the digital data it occupies, I have to ask myself whether I should keep wasting my time and that of those around me.
Well, there are two lines that are both fictitious and brilliantly written. You're well on your way to being an excellent fiction writer with those ;3

I think your confidence is shaking you, y'know. I mean, re-read parts of your blog. You're frustratingly witty. I can't tell you that enough. Ooooo, Mr, that is your second strike today!

If you ever want somebody to shake you awake and read your work, send me a PM or an email. I just know I'm going to be green with envy ^^
 
Sounds like you just need a kick in the ol' keyster.

Next time you're lamenting your lack of progress, or even the idea that you may be wasting your time, just remember that even though you have a computer and fingers doesn't mean you should be a writer. You have to want it bad enough. If this was 1859, and you had to scratch out your ideas on parchment with a fountain pen, would you do it? Or would it be too much of a pain in the ass?

Separate yourself from the hordes and hordes of wasters that dream, 'someday'. Or, don't. :)
 
Well, after some sleep and deep thought, I've basically gotten over my little self-pity party. I just banged out 400 or so words that are not at all bad. I'll need to go back and adjust those I have from earlier, I really wasn't at my best, but the sky isn't falling. :)

Plur, I doubt that, back in 1859, I could have written. Hand problems/missing digits make my pensmanship nearly illegible. But, I could see me earning enough to hire someone to write my stories down for me. ;)

Thanks you two, I'm better now.
 
Well, friend, I am sort of in the same spot, but not really. Yeah, that old phrase. Me, I have too many ideas, and too many things on the stove. And I am too satisfied with what I write, though I see the major errors well enough I suppose. I think confidence can be good, even a little ego. When I was up in Wisconsin looking into being a priest, staying at one of the parishes of the community I was looking into entering, I was in the choir. They hired a non-Catholic choir director, a guy trained in music. He was good but one of the priests found him a bit annoying. He said that musicians and actors have huge egos and are always seeking approval. I think they have to be like that. Same with writers. The balance is hard man. And it's not always simply consciously tinkering until you got it, or if it is, it is not that easy. Sometimes you are just depressed or worn out. And it effects you writing. Getting a second opinion helps though. The hard thing is finding people who actually want to take time to read it.
 

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