Monday, October 15, 2012

Have a little faith

I've been working on another YA off and on and off and on and mostly off but sometimes on.  I asked myself why it was taking me so long to get it done.  Haven't I written books before?  And didn't I write those books when I was chasing after five maniac boys and teaching a little here and bookselling a little there and just generally living my life at full tilt?  So why haven't I been more productive now that I have more of the life I used to fantasize about--at least where the writing part is concerned?

Here's what I realized.  I was finding all kinds of ways not to work on the novel because I was (am!) afraid.  What if this just turns out to be another manuscript that no one wants to read, let alone publish?

Well.  It might end up being that.  But that's no reason to stop.  It really isn't.  There are legitimate reasons to walk away from writing, but fear isn't one of them.

So I ran off what I've got and read through it and discovered that it is, in fact, a hot mess.  And if it were set in the south, then it would be a hot southern mess.  But lo and behold!  There are parts of it that are pretty darn good.  And I do think I see a shape, a direction, a point.

It was a good reminder that sometimes you have to take a leap of faith and hope the river currents below will carry you along kindly.


Lisa B. said...

Recently I had a small bout of the same conversation with myself--maybe I will just stop writing poetry, because what's the point?

pause pause pause pause pause

several days go by

and then I thought, oh for heaven's sake. Write it, don't write it, but what was EVER the point of poetry? you just write it because you love to and you can. because what's the point of, oh, ballet? or painting? or fancy food? for the joy of it, and that is all.

I am happy that you read your hot mess and found something to like, something to carry on with. In my opinion, the world would be poorer without your writing in it.

Emily said...

This is lovely. As someone who has yet to publish a novel. ALL of my writing feels like this. It might never be good enough, so I ask myself, why am I writing?

I think we have to have these moments now and again to remind us that we write because we love it. And because we can.

Mystery Girl said...

Ann, your encouragement kept me going when I was ready to give up so now it's my turn. You are a great writer keep going, keep writing you will be fine.

radagast said...

You can't fight against the natural order of things: write, submit, get rejected, repeat.

James said...

There is a moment on every roller coaster, possibly as the car reaches the apex, when I ask myself: "Why did I do this." Then the car plummets into a "hot mess" of fun. At the end, I am glad its over, pat myself on the back for conquering my misgivings. Then I get on again. I bet you are just on this side of the good part of the ride. I look forward to reading it.

ilima said...

This is so me right now. I need to have some faith and if it's crap, so what? That's no excuse to stop. Great post.