Monthly Archives: January 2014

Is Facebook Heading in the Right Direction?

This is a great video by Derek Muller from Veritasium about the changes to Facebook that not only limit what you see from the people you are friends with, but also the challenges entrepreneurs (including authors) have when trying to use Facebook to promote their wares.

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Funkified

I’m in a funk.  A writing funk.

I’ve been working on my first novel for a long time.  A LONG time.  Not always in novel form, but the story itself has been in my life everyday for about four years.

Four years.

First as a screenplay idea.  Then as a TV script idea.  And now as a novel idea.  It’s taken so long because it is through this process that I have been teaching myself how to write a novel.  No easy task.  And, apparently, not a fast process, either.

I’m at the point in the writing/rewriting process that I am finding it hard to read a draft and see the story in front of me anymore.  I know it too well.  I’ve re-written it too many times in too many formats that it’s become matrixed into my brain (you know, where they download how to fly a helicopter into your noggin and suddenly you know everything there is to know about flying helicopters).  I read what I think is there instead of what is actually on the page.

I’ve reached a saturation point.

rewrite-specsSo, I’ve brought in some outside assistance at this point to help me finalize this baby.  Readers, editors and the like.  Objectivity and brutal honesty is what I’m looking for.  I don’t care what has to change, as long as it makes the story better.  I am not wed to any character or event with any sort of emotional tie that wouldn’t keep me from killing them off if it would make a more effective novel.  And I think that’s the right approach.

At the end of the day, I don’t want to release the novel until it can be the best story possible.  Michael Hyatt, in his great book called Platform, calls it releasing a Wow product.  It’s not about being a perfectionist (because I am anything but), it is about not settling.  If you know it could be better then make it better until its a Wow product.

So, I’ll keep chugging along.

I’m not at Wow yet.  I’m probably at Cool or Interesting or Huh?

Hopefully I’ll soon leave this funk and move onto Woohoo when the final draft is finished.

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Busy, Busy, Busy

Not ignoring the blog, just busy with 1001 things.  All good, but time sensitive.

I’ll have a lot of updates soon.  Promise 🙂

When You Feel You Suck as a Writer

Every writer doubts their abilities.  It’s the nature of the process.

When working on a novel, invariably I will write something of which I am certain is effective that, upon further scrutiny, seems to suck.

doubt

The reality is none of these are true; it is neither effective or awful.  The fact that it can in inhabit both spaces at the same time means it needs further work.

Writing is hard.  Really hard.

Most of the time, writing is less about inspiration and more about getting the story onto paper, in all of its imperfectness.  Sure, it’s those moments of inspiration that keep you going, like when you hit one sweet drive on a par 5 that inspires you to hack your way through the remaining 18 holes, but the rest of the time, writing is relentless.

It’d be great if all writing was inspired.  If your brain functioned optimally.  If every word you wrote down was the best way to express the thought.

But, if that was how writing occurred, everyone would do it.

Writing is work.  It’s forcing yourself to write what you know sucks so that you will eventually hone it into something powerful after another 20 drafts.  It’s spending two hours working on two paragraphs.  It’s spending fifteen minutes running through the synonym function on your computer trying to find the word you just can’t remember.

Its sitting by yourself, trying to create a world for others, while you fumble with how best to describe it.  It’s writing in voices that aren’t your own.  It’s putting characters you love through hell.

And it’s writing a lot of words that are wrong so you can eventually find the few that are right.

Writing and doubts are often the best of friends.  But they’re not spouses.  With enough effort and persistence the doubts will eventually fade away.

Writing is hard.  That’s why it’s so awesome.

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