Tuesday, February 08, 2011

Today Was a Good Writing Day

Originally published at Absentminded Author, v1.


Sometimes I forget simple things. It's my nature.

I forget my keys and lock myself out of my home. And car. That's a lot of fun. 

I occasionally forget to go to sleep if I'm busy doing something. That's not so fun the next day.

Most annoying of all, though, is that I often forget epiphanies I have had. Rereading my journals is like reading the musings of a brilliant man with intermittent amnesia. That can be humorous, especially if I've rediscovered something a few times, but when the epiphany was a particularly enlightening one, it can be frustrating. Who likes to reinvent the wheel when they already have a bike in the back ready to ride?

Take my tongue in cheek Distracted Writers Club. I put that together three months ago — I even have a large badge advertising it on my other blog's side bar — yet I completely forgot about it. Here I am three months later struggling to write daily again. You'd think that an epiphany that would help me write daily even when life gets in the way would stay with me. Unfortunately, two holidays and a seminar hit my productivity in the face with a flying anvil, so much so I almost don't recognize myself. Really. I gained weight after the holidays, and I refuse to acknowledge it's me in the mirror. 

Then it hit me. An epiphany; not an anvil. Didn't I have some feeble, funny goal of 25 words per day that always jumpstarted me into writing more? So I wrote 25 words. And then I wrote 50. I blew by 100 without noticing, but stopped to count at 260. By the time the kids came home I had written 680 words. And they were good words. It's not Stephen King or Brandon Sanderson level, but it represented a good hour of effort.

All I need is 250 words per day and I can write a 91,250 word novel in one year. It won't necessarily be a good novel, but it would be finished. If I wrote 500 words per day, I could write two novels a year. The trick is to persevere and write every day. As Stephen King may or may have not once put it to Bryce Courtenay, the most important ingredient for any writer is bum glue. Such a simple solution for success. It's just typical of me that I often forget to open mine and use it.