Thursday, May 26, 2011

Getting Unstuck...

"Some days we just get stuck and bogged down. Some days all you can do is smile and wait for someone to kindly remove your butt from the hole you find it wedged into."

So as I sit here and stare at this blank blog page, I realized, this will be my 198th post. I am almost to 200 posts. Wow! Didn't think THAT would happen. I would have already been there had I not stopped back when I started working.

But this gives me something to focus on other than everything that isn't going so well in my life at the moment. I'm trying to get back into writing, editing... anything, really. I even thought maybe that short story contest I had won on would have kick started me. Sadly it only proved just how well I can write on the fly and when I came back to editing, I got stuck. Again.

I have two. TWO. Books in the process. I feel like I am being far too OCD about them, that they have to be absolutely perfect. That I must have the first sentence, paragraph and all that worked out before I can move on. I'm focusing too much on one aspect or the other and not on the stories as a whole. Does anyone else have this problem? How do you get over this "rough patch"?

I would have thought that by now I would be at the stage where I would have beta readers, be ready to send out the queries, all sorts of things. Perhaps it just isn't the right time for these stories and I should stick them in a drawer (I'd hate to) and move on to something else. That just makes me feel like someday I will end up with a drawer (or two) full of unfinished stories... Hmm.

Any suggestions?


Jennie Bennett said...

I have nine unfinished novels stuck in my drawer. NINE!
I say just write. The more you write, the more ideas come to you. Someday you'll find "The One" but until then just do it for the therapy or whatever other reason you have to write.
One other suggest is to have someone else look for edits. I found it helps me from being so nit picky and hating everything I have written. Maybe give it a try :D

Hart Johnson said...

Okay... LET GO... I think you want it as perfect as possible before you QUERY, but beta readers KNOW this is a process, and I think you want feedback on a macro level before you worry about sentences. And when you DO worry about sentences (after you make adjustment a la beta reader) you want 3 chapters as sublime as possible, and the REST really just needs to be pretty good, and first the agent, then the editor will be ALSO requesting tweaks. There is no reason to spend all that time tweaking the hell out of something that is probably going to change anyway... it is wasted energy.

Alex J. Cavanaugh said...

Why not let some people read it and help you get unstuck? Really, my critique partners had some awesome ideas that I was able to incorporate into my next manuscript. And they found all my grammar errors. Made it easier for me!

Mel Chesley said...

Thanks, you guys. You are absolutely right!

@Jen ~ Nine? Okay I don't feel so bad. XD

@Hart ~ You are right, as usual. Thanks. :D

@Alex ~ I should get back in with my critique group.

It is a process... I'm probably just a huge fraidy cat. lol! I will keep writing and I will let these other two go, on their journey to betas, critiquers... thanks again. I guess I sort of needed that kick in the butt. ;)