Taking the long way around

I have a big ol’ blog crush on Janet Reid, which began with Query Shark and was only confirmed when I found her own blog. For those of you who haven’t read Query Shark, you will see the link to my left, your right, go read it. (Yes, Paul, that maybe should have had semi colons in it. You’re making me self-conscious.)

We all get tempted by the shiny “send” button, or by tales of other people’s success, or by our own exhaustion with the thing, and the desire to have it in someone else’s hands. Now. Let them edit it. But read this post through the comments; there are no shortcuts.

I talk big. “I’ll write the chapter that I’ve been struggling through for two years this week” I told someone. Right. I did discover that Troubled Chapter is troubled, in part, because I had no lead up to it. So I wrote two chapters before Troubled Chapter to give it some context.

But I can’t write Troubled Chapter in a week. At the very least, I have to read a book about physics before I even fucking start Troubled Chapter. I have to find a time when my ADD has calmed down enough that I can get work done. And then there is the writing of it. What am I going to say? What do I include? And that’s before I even begin to think about making the chapter interesting to other people. Once I do all that, then I can start making the language prettier, the sentence structure more varied, and establishing connections between my points. A week. How about a month or a year?

How do you gear up for the long haul?

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16 responses to “Taking the long way around

  1. Indy,
    Writing is overwhelming, discouraging and sometimes devastating. But I’m beginning to think we do it to ourselves. There was a day long, long ago now, when I decided to write a story. And it was a long, stumbling affair, learning to make pictures out of scribbles on a page. At some point, time becomes too much, and we think we’re done with it. But there is no time in the world of the story. There is only the point where it is true and as right as we can make it. We take a breathe and exhale before writing one really true paragraph. No agents, no publishers, no cover design, just us and one small true thing. Repeat ad infinitum.
    You are a writer. Just write.
    Love.

  2. I just went to visit query shark’s page. OMG! A few comments:

    1) does she have a life? Can’t! No way! Did you see the volume on that blog (or the other one)?
    2) why is she so snarky (I mean) sharky? Is that some kind of rule of the trade? 3) why does everyone call her angel? Aren’t angels supposed to be nice?
    4) she’s fabulous.

    Get writing!

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