My last few posts where I’ve talked about writing have not been exactly uplifting. I’ve talked about how I’m not writing. I’ve talked about other ways that I’m blessed, and I’ve mentioned that I haven’t given up. At the end of the day, my stories languished, and I felt bad about it.
Today, let’s change it up a little bit. Today, let’s talk about an actual writing success!
This past Sunday, I needed to finish editing something to turn in to my writer’s group. I felt pressured to get at least the first act of the novel finished.
After work on Friday, Melissa left the house with me and we headed to a Starbucks closer to our house. A smaller venue, we sat in the corner, Melissa with her book, me with my Surface. I hunched over my notes, and fell into my story.
Then, something wonderful happened. I lost myself in the words. I enjoyed myself. I enjoyed my story! Before I knew it, a crabby barista was telling us that we had fifteen minutes to pack up our stuff and leave. I had completely lost track of time.
The next morning, feeling invigorated by the success of the previous evening, I made a plan to keep going. I spent the morning editing another few chapters. By afternoon, the kids were doing their own thing, and Melissa was off with her sister for some fun before a Garth Brooks concert. I decided that a little Scotch might loosen me up. Big mistake.
When it comes to alcohol, I’m a bit of a featherweight. Alone in my garage, slightly inebriated, I thought it’d be a good idea to watch a couple of Tarantino movies. You know, because he’s good at dialog, so it’d be like research. Then something made me think of the movie Inception, so I put that in. Somehow, more Scotch wound up in my glass.
The next morning, feeling a little bit hung over, I made a new plan. More editing, less Scotch. Melissa took me to breakfast and fed my need for greasy food. When we got home, I returned to the garage, and tried to find whatever magic I’d found Friday night.
It took a while, but eventually, I found it.
I fell back into the story. The stumbling block had been some seemingly insignificant detail that I needed to include near the beginning. For whatever reason, I just couldn’t find the words. When I found them, the flood gates opened, and I was able to tackle a chapter that had been eluding me for months.
The story drew me in. Well after midnight, I clawed my way back into the real world, sent the story to the group, and went to bed. I was a dragon slayer. I was a Jedi Knight. I had slain the monster, rescued the hostage. I felt powerful and amazing. I also felt exhausted. It was time for a victory sleep.
It played out like a story, really. Friday, the first act, introduced me to what was possible, foreshadowing what was to come. Saturday, during the second act, my journey took a turn for the worst, and I wound up in a difficult position. Sunday, the final act, I overcame the difficulty in a spectacular fashion, bringing the story to a satisfactory conclusion.
I still have a long ways to go with the novel, but I’m encouraged by the success. And now that I’m warmed up, it’s time to get back to it! Wish me luck!