Sunday, 26 April 2009


I've done very little writing recently, even by post accident standards. But I have been thinking a lot. I've been questioning my current WIP and trying to see the potential flaws that might mean I'm investing a huge chunk of time and effort in a story that will end up my recycle bin.

I know, I know - no writing is wasted but still, if I can get it right I jolly well want to. I'm just not sure at what point useful thinking becomes a paralyzing kind of over-thinking. Or even an excuse for not writing. Everything in my NWS report was extremely helpful (and valid) but I think I need to mentally put it aside for the moment and just write - the analysis and edit can come later.

Does anyone remember writing for fun? I think I need to recapture that again...


Jackie Ashenden said...

I remember writing for fun! So long ago... :-) Why don't you write something that you won't submit? Either that or just get stuck into the WIP without worrying about it until the editing stage. That's what I'm doing with Kate and Alex. When I'm not thinking about new shoes that is... :-)

Lacey Devlin said...

I'm so sorry to hear about your accident I hope you're feeling better :)

I've been to the no-fun-writing side of life but have managed to recapture the fun part. I've found that when I make myself write on days I really didn't want to not only was productivity down but my writing was poor my poor brain just wanted a break. It's happened twice and both times taking a chunk of time off has worked wonders. So if you can I recommend taking the occasional day off to unpack the house against your will for instance. You'll find yourself missing the creativity. I did to the point where the rest of the boxes actually look really nice where they are :)

Joanne Cleary said...

I think that's why I couldn't get anywhere with mine the last few weeks. My brain needed some time off. I've not exactly unpacked like Lacey, but I've totally revamped by conservatory and the reason my WIP stalled just came to me. In a flash of inspiration ... ahem, more like the totally obvious answer smacked itself upside my head!

Thinking about a WIP is never wasted, even though I always feel bad for not making my word count go up!

Lorraine said...

Jackie - yes, I think switching the internal editor off for a bit will help. After all having someone peering over your shoulder waiting to criticise you is bound to be inhibiting.

Lacey - thanks. I'm still suffering the after effects but trying to get on with life. I have plenty of boring house stuff to do and am definitely missing the creativity. If it's any consolation we moved 18 months ago and we still have some stuff in boxes :-)

Jo - A break is always useful and it sounds like you're creating a nice space to write in. I agree that thinking is never wasted but maybe we need to ease off on the analytical part of the process sometimes so the creative, intuitive part can take over.

Suzanne said...

Thinking is still work for a writer (that's my excuse, anyway).

Jackie's right, write for yourself rather than for an editor for a while.

I often find that it helps to work on something different. Short stories can be great fun to write and don't take much time away from your main project.