Cathartic Change

In my last post I may have mentioned that I finally have a plot in mind for my NaNoWriMo project. I’d been rather vague in what I wanted to do and was having a very difficult time getting started. In fact, I was having a very difficult time getting excited about working on any other writing project.

Editing is not my favorite thing to do, and right now I’m stuck in the process of editing a previous NaNo manuscript. I love those characters and their stories, but that whole mess is complicated and causing me no end of lumps on the brow from smashing my head on the keyboard. My original plan had been to work on the rough draft for the third installment of “the series.” It wouldn’t come to me. I have ideas, I have notes, I have plans, characters, plots, sub-plots, intrigue, and future stories lining up at the door.

The only thing missing? A desire to forge ahead while I have so much backlog to clean up. NaNo loomed and I was sitting there, spinning my wheels and debating on whether or not I wanted to spend the month forcing myself to spew 50k words into a document. The last time that happened, I ended up with a 12 month writer’s block that had me fearing for my writing life.

Instead, I began perusing my hard drive, culling notes and old stories for ideas. Finally, an old short story that I loved stuck to my hands as I combed the files. Pulling it out, I realized that while the short story itself was complete, it also had potential to be expanded and the main character allowed to grow. As I worked on it, the story began to soften and become malleable, forming a larger plot that could not only encompass the 50,000 words to be a NaNo winner, but engage my enthusiasm and ignite my desire to write something new.

The beauty of this is that I’m still interested in working on editing the other manuscript. There is no conflict, nothing I’m writing today will change the story I’ve been working on for three years. There’s a definite sense of freedom in being able to do that. I don’t feel like I’m taking anything away from my pet project, yet I’m allowing myself the joy of participating in a much anticipated yearly event.

A win-win situation and and eye-opening experience. I have found I can write in two worlds and not fall apart. I can work with different types of characters and love them all. It has put my fears to rest and given me a chance to move forward.

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About Ms. Karen

This is what happens when you live with a writer: there are pens everywhere, except by the phone; notebooks...so many notebooks with strange scribblings that make no sense but must never be thrown away; and long rambling monologues about what certain characters would, or would not do in a given situation. It's almost as difficult as living with an artist. Man, THOSE people are bizarre...
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3 Responses to Cathartic Change

  1. daoine says:

    I’m glad you found a workable solution Karen.

    NaNo loomed and I was sitting there, spinning my wheels and debating on whether or not I wanted to spend the month forcing myself to spew 50k words into a document. The last time that happened, I ended up with a 12 month writer’s block that had me fearing for my writing life.

    It’s that sort of issue that has always put me off NaNo. I don’t write that way, and it is a lot of words to put in to something that you might have to trash later because it just doesn’t fit.

    And I’m in a similar quandry to you, too, where I need to finish the story I’m writing but my internal editor just won’t let go the fact that I really need to clean up the beginning.

    Like

  2. Barbara Pett says:

    Oh, sounds delicious! Do I get to tech edit this one too? Pleeeeease!?

    Like

  3. Selma says:

    It sounds great, Karen. Change is good. It can refresh our perspective no end. 😀

    Like

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