This is something I’ve mentioned before. Please don’t be mistaken in thinking that I’m saying writers aren’t trustworthy. On the contrary, if I was to do a poll I wouldn’t be surprised to learn that most writers are truthful to a fault. The reason we’re truthful? Because we pour all of our lies out on paper. We have to, it’s the nature of the job. We have to spin a wonderful tale that isn’t real.
We have to create worlds with danger and intrigue that feature people that we can see ourselves as or that we love to hate. When it comes down to it, our lies are simply a way to show people our fantasies. We don’t write these tales because we think they will be great stories, but because we wish we were in that situation. At least that is my take on it.
But this lesson isn’t just about what we write, instead it is about the process of writing. When I finished Memory Lane I learned this and other lessons. I’ll talk about the others later, but this lesson is about how I get myself from the first draft to the second draft. How we manage to let the story/book/poem/script… lie in waiting so it can rest and we can read it fresh. For some stories, like the short ones, a day or two is all that is necessary, for novels I find I have to give myself a week at least, two at the most. Why? Because the story is still in my head for that long.
I’m talking about it, I’m reviewing scenes as I remember them in my head. I tease and play with it. I can’t help it by the time I finish it. The reason for that is because if I didn’t find it fascinating I wouldn’t have written it. I suspect it is the same for other writers as well.
My biggest lie to myself is this: “When I have all the reviews and thoughts from my reading group only then will I reread the blasted thing!”
Inevitably, as I get each review I go back to look at it despite wanting to wait for the others. I can’t help it.
- A writer (sserrat.wordpress.com)
- Dear Writer’s Block – (Prompted by Writer’s Digest) (easterellen.wordpress.com)
- Rules for better writing from Genghis Khan (thethingsthatcatchmyeye.wordpress.com)