For many years I have wanted to get back into writing fiction. That’s not to say that I wrote a lot in the past, but I did write some stories that I’ve never shared and that are now lost.
I’ve moaned and groaned about not being able to get my ideas on paper. As many writers know, procrastination comes easy when it’s time to sit down and write. All of a sudden your bills become important, cleaning your house becomes important, and then there’s Facebook.
I read an article or a blog post the other day that basically said that until you become serious about being a writer, you’ll find all kinds of excuses to get out of doing it. A lot of people say “If it’s so hard and you can’t find the time, then maybe you’re not a writer”. That’s bullshit. Get rid of those people, you don’t need that kind of negativity in your life.
Writing or being an artist of any kind is painstaking. It’s not that we care so much about what our audience thinks, don’t get me wrong we do. It’s about what we think about ourselves and our own work. We are our own worst critique. We have that voice inside our head telling us all the time about how much we suck. As. we. work.
I recently talked to a friend of mine about how she writes. How did she get her ideas out of her head and on the paper? This is what she told me, “Take that idea and put it away if you can’t work on it right now. Write something else, just write. It doesn’t matter if it’s good or bad, just write.”
All of the books on writing say the same thing, but for some reason it means more when it comes out of someone’s mouth that you know and who has been where you are, who is also still where you are, even though they’ve written and directed full length motion pictures.
So today, I did that. After a couple of false starts, I fired up my favorite distraction free writing environment, Writemonkey, and I set a goal of 2000 words or 30 minutes, whichever came first. I had a break for food and to briefly check email and respond to a couple of Facebook posts, but I’m happy to report that I wrote just over 2000 words. Were they good words? Some were, some weren’t, that’s for the editing process. For now though, I’ve started a story about love, adventure, and ants.
I’d also like to give a shout out to Rory’s Story Cubes for helping me come up with the idea.
I also want to thank my friend Issa Lopez for her inspiration.