Wednesday, November 30, 2011

A Few Days As a "Real" Writer

Photo by wwarby.  licensed under
Creative Commons Attribution 2.0 Generic.
I'm at the tail end of three full days of dedicated writing.  It's been an amazing experience.  And a slightly draining one.  I've been preparing for these past days by imagining and engineering (imagineering) the details of the new novel for the past months.  For me this consists of figurative gears turning in my head--but also a lot of note taking and jotting down scene fragments.  So what happened over these past few days is best described as a frenzy of regurgitating, writing and cross referencing ideas that I've been working on for a long time.

The work has proceeded quickly.  I've written close to 25,000 words since Monday.  My work in progress, which I'm now dubbing "Hemlock and the Dead God's Legacy", is tantalizingly close to completion.  Yet significant work remains.  I'm unsure whether I'll be able to complete the first draft by the end of the year, but that is my goal.

I'm in a strange emotional place with this novel.  My mood seems to be alternating between thinking that it is going to be great, and thinking that it's going to be nothing more than another self-published fantasy novel in the proverbial slush pile of life.  Even mediocre novels are an amazing journey for a writer.  They start out as wild ideas in our minds: necessarily ethereal and inherently wonderous.  We sort of hold out our dream catchers and channel them into words.  Almost by definition the words we produce are not the same as the initial vision we had.  They are derived from that vision, but they are something separate.

I think every story starts out as a wonderous thing.  The devil in the details is the translation to words.  That is where the craft of writing comes in.  I think I've improved my craft, and I think my new story is at least as good as Hemlock and the Wizard Tower was.  So unless I'm really in the grip of some nasty self delusion, this book should be better.  But I dream that it will be worlds better and that it will excite people as much as it does me.  In order to do that the words will have to be invisible.  They will have to describe the magic of the original concept as closely as possible.  And that's where I can't gauge my success.  Only other people will be able to do that.

I have to confess to feeling a little hollow.  It's very solitary writing all day.  I miss being in an office.  The irony is that within an hour of being at the office I'll be pining for another day to write.  Just one more precious day.  I guess it's all part of the cycle of desire and fulfillment.  I need to wait for my creative fire to re-ignite before I write the final chapters of this novel.  You could call it the Maker's Fire.  Hey, isn't that the new name of my trilogy?  {wink}


  1. Very cool to heat that the new book is approaching completion. I'm looking forward to it for sure!

  2. Thanks for the comment! I've still got you lined up to be a beta reader. Hopefully sooner than later. I don't know how you find time to do all of the reading you do--but I'll be benefiting from it!