Tag Archives: writer woes

Before Halloween

So, I’ve talked to a couple of people and I’m very excited to announce that my first book, Awfully Appetizing, should become available in print sometime in October.

When in October?  Not sure.  But I do now know what the holdup is!  Apparently the books from Winlock need to be appropriately formatted before they are sent to the printers, and the gentleman who is doing the formatting is dealing with the backlog of books that were not put out during whatever nonsense was originally going on with the printer.  So, now he’s got about thirty books he needs to format and send off.

So, anyway, those of you who have been impatiently waiting for my book to become available in print, have no fear, sometime in the next thirty five days or so, my word-child will be birthed into the physical world.

Hurrah!  Hurrah!

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Becoming a good writer

I’ve had a couple of conversations with friends recently that all went kind of similarly.  Basically, when I start talking to them about writing they’ll tell me that they would love to write, and they have some great ideas that they really want to get down, but they just don’t have any talent for it.

It brought to mind a quote on writing that I’ve seen a couple of times over the years.  I can’t remember how it went exactly or who said it, but it was something along the lines of ‘the first few years of writing there’s a disparity between your tastes and your output.  You know what good writing is, but you can’t seem to produce it.’

I think it’s important for people who start out writing, or who start out doing any kind of artistic endeavor, to keep this in mind.  A lot of people, in my experience, allow themselves to become discouraged early on and quit something that they enjoy doing just because they aren’t good at it.  But the things, nobody is really ‘good’ when they start.  some may be better than others, but nobody is actually good.

If you want to become a good writer, or a good painter, or a good musician, you have to be willing to be a bad writer, or painter, or musician first.  Whatever your goal, you have to be willing to be awful for a while, until your skill catches up with your taste.

That is not to say that if you do anything long enough you’ll become amazing at it, I can’t guarantee amazing, and god only knows what it takes to become successful, but I do know that it takes time to get good, and you have to be willing to invest that.

Waxing and Waning

Sometimes, as a writer, the words just flow.  Sometimes you can sit down, start typing, and the hardest thing you have to deal with all day long is trying to keep up with the inspiration.

And sometimes the words don’t flow.

Right now, the words aren’t coming.  I’ve been at this long enough that I don’t panic about it anymore.  I know that there are ebbs and flows to all of this and that in due course I’ll find myself neck deep in stories again.

But right here, right now, I’m a dry well.

And it kind of sucks.  I’ve got responsibilities as a writer.  I’ve got books I’m working on for people and with people.  I’ve got deadlines and whatnot.  Hell I’ve got a blog and I can’t think of a single thing worth saying.

One thing I have learned over the years, after going through more than a couple of dry spells, is that you fight it.  You make yourself put the words down, even if they don’t feel quite right.  You make yourself get through it now, because if you can write through the lows, the highs will last that much longer.

Deep breath, and plow forward, one step at a time.

All across the wall

I’m working on book three of the Corpse-Eater Saga, and I have to say, there is a lot of stuff to remember.  There are characters of varying importance who may or may not come back into another story later.  There are descriptions of people and places, which, though not important enough for me to remember all the time, would be embarrassing to get wrong.  There is the description of distances and drive times.  There are endless details.  And, let’s face it, I am not good with details.

Because of that, my walls are becoming increasingly crowded.  I started by drawing a map of the my imaginary city, Collinswood Colorado.  Then I wrote out very brief sketches for each of the nine books that I’ve agreed to write in the series.  Then I drew blueprints for a couple of buildings, so I wouldn’t find myself describing a place that can’t exist in three dimensions.    Now I have a couple more buildings to draw, and several character arcs that I’m going to be sketching out.  I’m also about to start a list of events that exist to foreshadow upcoming plots and stories.  I should’ve done that at the very beginning.

Dammit, I’m running out of wall space!