Sometimes starting to write is worse than climbing Mount Everest. Sometimes I’d rather scrub the toilet in a frat house with a toothbrush rather than write. Has that ever happened to you? I’m working against that now. Luckily there are no frathouses in town. But I do have a book to write.
Here’s the weird thing. I have been struggling with opening this book and have actually nailed the scene. I even figured out what is going to happen next and I’m excited about writing it. Until of course I go to do it and then I’m looking around for that toilet.
I’m thinking that at this point I’ve forgotten some key elements of writing, so I’ll repeat them to myself and to you so we can all motivate me back to writing (cause you know, it’s all about me. :-D).
First, Abandon All Standards and Write Fast. This is critical. I think I’m worried about making the words work with the vision in my head. I KNOW that much of what I do that’s good happens in revision, and yet I’m still worried about getting it right the first time. At this point, I need to kick my own ass and just write. Get something down to work with.
Dare to Be Bad. Same as above. Just do it and don’t worry how bad. Course for me, I am a very linear writer, so I need what comes before to be solid before I can move. I don’t mean polished, but that the bones of the plot and character have to be there so that I can build forward. I simply can’t move forward if a scene isn’t working. I have to make it work.
And this one from Laura Ann Gilman: Run for the Credits. Just run for the end. Keep it in sight and keep going forward. Forward motion is critical. Keep going.
Ass in Chair. Put it there and don’t move it. Cut off your distractions until all that’s left is the page in front of you and the story in your head.
Stop Planning and Write. At some point, you have to stop thinking about what will happen and start committing words. It goes back to revision. You can fix things later. Now, get moving.
Those are my top encouragements. What are yours? Now I’d better go follow my own advice.