Tuesday, October 19, 2010

Writing Frustrations

Aside from the odd blog post, I haven't written anything in over two weeks now. I have six weeks to my deadline, and well over half the book left to write. I thought for certain I would be well on my way by now, but time keeps slipping away, which has made me realize just how delicate of a balance is needed to be able to write. The words don't necessarily just flow out of my hands every time I sit down at the computer, like people tend to think. For a blog? Certainly, that's easy, because it's all my thoughts and opinions, and aside from the occasional tough decision on word choice or sentence structure, I can apply butt to seat and just let it all pour out of me.

Writing the book, however, doesn't happen that smoothly or easily. Oh, don't get me wrong, there are days where things are crystal clear and the story is practically writing itself, but sometimes you need time to let the vision present itself. Each paragraph must fit the scene. Each scene must fit into the greater scheme of the story. For that to be happening, one must be in the proper mindset, and lately I've been having trouble remembering what that is. Even when I am in a groove, I write more slowly when I'm working on the book than when I'm slinging off an email or jotting out a blog post.

I can say at a glance that I write 1135 words per hour when blogging, but only 568 words per hour working on my book. Since I've reached the point where I need to write about 2200 words a day every day until November 30th to hit my goal, that measures out to right about four hours of work, unless I hit a major breakthrough and start writing my happy ass off. Four hours of work every day, even when I've already worked a nine or ten hour shift, is an extremely daunting prospect, and scarily enough that's not helping me at all with getting my butt moving again. I try to help it along by reading other work, or articles on writing, but then anything I do that is taking time away from writing just adds to the stress, because I realize it's just the clock burning away. I need an extra day in the week, or not to require as much sleep as I do, and I need to have my writerly time be available for me to actually get some work done, rather than sitting down at the laptop and practically hyperventilating at the idea of the task before me. The story is there, I just have to find it again, and for that I need solitude.

Of course, I also need some connection with the outside world that isn't work, and isn't just Facebook or Twitter. They're great, but I do like holding conversations with people, face-to-face, or on the phone. But that takes time, and time I don't feel like I even have right now.

The bottom line, though, is that I have a lot of work ahead of me, and a very limited amount of time to do it. And I'm trying desperately not to flip out about it, but if I seem to scurry off and hide a lot, don't take it personally, k? K.