Thursday, January 7, 2010

Mining for Gold

One of my New Year's resolutions was to get up at 6am and write for two hours. That way, no matter how busy the day, I knew I would get in at least two hours. A friend actually writes entire books this way. Two hours everyday. Day after Day. Until they have a completed MS.

So, up at 6am everyday, so far, this week. IF you knew me well you'd know how shocking this is. But I like it. I like feeling that I'm the only one awake in my part of the world and that those two hours are just for me. I can write what I want. What makes me happy.

I also feel more in control of the rest of the day. I'm not stumbling around making my kid's school lunch minutes before they run out of the house for the school bus. I'm not leaving my bed unmade as I charge out of the house because I'm running late.

This morning I had a little glitch. My oldest decided to get up at 6.30am and take a shower before heading out to the early bus. And she wouldn't leave me alone. Finally she looks at me and asks. "Why are you getting up so early?" Out of patience I snapped. "I'm trying to write."  She got all indignant. But she finally left me alone. Thank you child. Please remember next time.

I'm also striving for 1,000 words, 5 days a week, with weekends to catch up if I need to. This is a reasonable word count for me. First, I had to go back to the beginning of my NANO story and fix it. I've worked on it steadily all week but deleted more words than I added.  A couple of times I wanted to just push myself away from the computer and give up. But I talked myself out of it and shouted down the critic in my head who was whispering the word "crap" in my head. Over and Over.

Just show up, I told myself. Just keep putting words on the page. Doesn't matter what it is. You can't fix a blank page...

And guess what? This morning it all came together. I think I actually struck gold. I wrote some new scenes, changed their past relationship with each other and gave the hero a different mother.

Maybe there is something to this just showing up stuff and giving yourself permission to write crap.

6 comments:

Cat Schield said...

Hey, good for you. If I write in the morning, I get more done and feel less like I'm playing catch-up. I'm repeating my Nano experience this month with a brand new story. So far, so good. It's been a long time since I've written a whole draft start to finish with no pauses for rewrites. Kinda makes me feel good to have a raw book sitting in my computer just waiting to be molded and shaped.

Good luck with your gold. It always makes me smile to hear an author talk about that excitement they feel as it all comes together.

Kelly Boyce said...

Yay on the breakthrough! I had one this morning too. It felt good to be back to writing after a month long hiatus. I feel energized again. And isn't getting up early in the AM great? I mean, the early part isn't so fabulous, but the fact that you have the world to yourself for a couple of hours is like your own little slice of peace before madness descends.

Anne MacFarlane said...

Cat, I don't know if I could write a whole draft without rewrites. Sounds like it's working for you.

Anne MacFarlane said...

Kelly, great news on the breakthrough.

I've surprised myself that I like writing in the morning so much.

Only problem, being a woman of a...certain age? I look like hell from the lack of sleep.

Michelle Helliwell said...

Oh Anne - I think you nailed it. You have to just get it out, crap and all. You can fix up the crap and make it into something great...and often it's not as bad as you think. Good luck girl - sounds like you are on your way. 5000 words a week is what I want to try and get to as well.

Anne MacFarlane said...

Michelle, I fear that it often is as bad as I think. But, I'm beginning to have the confidence that I might actually be able to fix it.LOL.