Saturday, February 23, 2013

A Drop in the Ocean

I usually like to write at the library. It is quiet and relaxing, and it reminds me of a childhood spent falling in love with books. There is internet in case I need to do a quick bit of research, but it does not tempt me to lose myself in surfing the web. Plenty of table space and outlets, and no one to bother me while I work. And no food to distract me!

On top of all that, I find it inspiring to sit in the midst of the stacks, surrounded by books. To imagine myself joining the ranks of published authors and to picture my book sitting in its place on a shelf.


Today something feels different. Maybe it is because I am quite tired, but today all these books just make me feel insignificant. How many of these books will I never read? How many will my eyes just pass right over on the shelf without a second thought? And if I were to ever clear the massive hurdle that is being published, what would make my book any different to everyone else? If I ever finish my debut novel, and if it gets accepted and published, what then? It will just be one more book on the shelf. A drop in the ocean, a grain of sand on the beach.

Still, I'm not going to give up. I just finished another chapter in novel 6, and I do in general feel good about it. And even a drop in a nameless stream can someday hope to be a drop in the ocean.

(On a mostly unrelated note, the above image is from, which is a pretty freaking awesome collection.)

Sunday, February 17, 2013

Digging Through the Past

The other day I was having a little trouble coming up with the
inspiration to work on my WIP, and so I indulged in a time-honored
writing tradition: procrastination.

I wanted to be able to pretend I was going something useful, so I
decided to stick with something relating to my writing. I began to dig
through the "Archived Projects" folder. I ended up spending several
hours throughout that day reading up on several manuscripts at varying
stages of completion. Some were years old, some as recent as last year.
And I discovered the strangest thing--I like my writing!

This might sound ridiculous. Because why would I write if I didn't think
I was any good? But it's hard to see that when you're lost in the thick
of the weeds that consist of the middle of a first draft. To be able to
back and read something I wrote years ago and be drawn in and want to
read more is something different. I was actually mad at myself for not
continuing on with those projects because I wanted to finish reading

But then, I began to think, maybe this isn't such a good thing after
all. Where is my critical eye? How can I ever hope to improve if I can't
tell myself where I suck? I'm not saying they were perfect, because of
course they weren't, but I didn't get the editing bug that sometimes
strikes me when I am reading less-than-satisfactory books by others. And
shouldn't I be growing as a writer? Why isn't my writing now leaps and
bounds above where it was two years ago? And if my writing is as good as
all that, why does it get form rejected time and time again?

I don't think there is a perfect answer to this conundrum. I eventually
closed out of the old files and put some work into my new one, and I
told myself not to worry about it. Do my best, keep writing, and keep
submitting. Hopefully someone else will someday be as enthralled with my
writing as I am, and then I can pass a little bit of pleasure along to
the lives of readers everywhere. And that is a dream that hasn't changed
for decades!

Friday, February 1, 2013

January 2013 Wrap-Up

Not a bad start to the year. I ended up at 7128, or 109.0% of my goal, which makes me pretty happy. I had 21 days of no writing, which makes me less happy, but taking into account my vacation at the beginning of the month, it’s not bad.

My goal for February, short month that it is, is a fairly modest 5908. I think perhaps I need to start evaluating my writing goals in terms of days actually spent written. So in terms of that, my goal is to have only 14 non-writing days. One of those things that sounds easier than it is? Possibly. But it’s also possible that I could smash my goals! I like to think on the bright side at least some of the time!