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Thursday, June 5, 2014

The Best Laid Plans...

Having espoused an attempt organisational skills, I must admit this week has been difficult. I have been fighting a persisting migraine that only occasionally dull down to a less than pleasant headache. I have felt listless and employed too many of my procrastination methods. Work issues have had me on edge the past few weeks.

Even writing has not subdued my lethargy. In fact it has been hard to write over the past week. I had some delicious ideas while lying in bed, this morning. Instead of writing them down I stayed in bed, fell back asleep and the ideas melted away. Oh, I have explained some of the procrastination away as research or learning the craft but in the end it boils down to one thing – avoidance.

I am only a few scenes from finishing the first draft of Doctor Jack - currently at 23,600 words with possible 3000-5000 more ahead. A short story’s worth. I have written such short stories in two days. So why do I seem to have ditched my best laid plans?

It is not like I will have to shelf these characters forever. Viola and Doctor Collins are set for more adventures. Will I miss Jack too much? Maybe. I could always write of his earlier exploits. Viola’s adventures were always destined as a series of short stories or novellas. Why can’t Jack appear in another? (Well, as yet, I have not decided which of the three endings I will finally opt for. All have been provided for. Ha! Maybe I should give optional endings?)

Is the fear – what happens once I am finished? I have to face rewrites. Maybe that is it? No. While not as exciting, I don’t mind them. I get a chance to cull sections that I don’t like (and unfortunately most likely some that I do as well). There is a sense of satisfaction in reshaping the original story into something more complex and polished.

round writeA writer-friend suggested a reason to me. Fear of failure. I think she may be correct. What if no one likes my work? What if the story is crap?  Then there is fear of rejection; if I do not finish, then I do not have to deal with rejection.  So many insecurities.

Fortified with another cup of tea, some 85% fair trade chocolate, and possibly after I have sat through a really bad movie, I am hopeful that I can shake this funk.I know what Doctor Jack would say – “Why fear failure? If you do not finish then you can’t even claim failure. How can you fail, if you do not even try?”  Why is it that my characters have more insight and bravery than me?

The Best Laid Plans...

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