Thursday, August 23, 2012

Writing Daze

Ever feel overwhelmed? I'm teetering on the verge. I'm sure it's a different feeling for everyone. For me, it's rather like being a salmon trying to swim upstream in a rapid river. I know I'll eventually reach my goal, but right now, at the half-way mark, the sensation is disconcertingly like I'm slipping backward.

I missed my blog post on Tuesday (bad blogger, no biscuit!), which is why you're seeing this post on Thursday. I...have no real excuse (the cats certainly didn't care enough to eat my post). I was where I've been all month — head down in revisions.

I've been so distracted, I didn't even notice my new email client hiccupped and shoved a lot of email it shouldn't have into my spam folder. Now, on top of all the other things I've put off while in my revision daze, I have to wade through emails and send out apologetic replies. I freely admit I'm a poor correspondent at the best of times—I'm not sure why, exactly, but I am. However, I'm not this bad. If you sent me an email in the last couple of weeks and thought I should have replied—this is probably what happened to it. Expect an email from me in the next day or two, after I revert to my old email client...

So, what about these revisions I mentioned? I'm doing a final revision of The Lazarus Gambit before sending it out. This is actually the second—and most extensive—revision I've done so far. I'm rewriting whole scenes, deleting others, and creating new scenes that should have existed in the first place. I can't stress how much I'm learning and how much better the book will be when I'm done.

The biggest lesson I've learned is that I need to give myself a reasonable amount of time to write, no matter which draft I'm working on. Rushing through a book just means having to do more extensive rewrites later. While I can write a fast first draft, I find now that I'd rather not. I'd much prefer doubling, or even tripling the time it would take for that fast draft to write a more solid first draft.

Paradoxically, taking more time up front will mean spending less time later. In retrospect, I should have known this about myself. It's the same principle I've used in software and website development and applying it to yet another creative venture—writing—should have been obvious.

Well, that's the state of me. Walking around with my head in a revision fog. Wondering how it suddenly became the last part of August and what happened to the rest of the month. How about you? Do you ever get so lost in your writing (or your revisions) that the rest of the world seems a little less real?

Deborah Wright
Twitter: @DeborahBWright
Facebook: Deborah.Wright.Author

1 comment:

Genene Valleau, writing as Genie Gabriel said...

You mean there's a world that doesn't revolve around writing? LOL!

I do hit overwhelm sometimes. But I'm learning to say "no thanks" to other projects during intense writing times or, as you said, allow more time. Of course, that doesn't mean things don't come up that demand my immediate attention and still disturb my schedule. But I'm getting better at handling these.

Glad your revisions are moving forward!