Yes, I’ve been away for a bit. ‘Nuff said.
It’s been said that confession is good for the soul. Maybe, maybe not, but I’m going for it anyway.
I have a jones for reading blogs with “helpful advice for writers.” Chuck Windig and Laura Anne Gilman come to mind as examples. One common theme amongst them is that the first draft of a story is essentially “word puke”…just get your shit down on the page and worry about edits and revisions later. Do I listen to these people? Do I follow their learned advise? Oh hell no. I can’t stop myself from going back a few chapters in the rough draft to “fix” things. I. Need. To. Stop. This. Shit.
I use Scrivener as my writing program. It has a thousand options for working with multiple levels of revisions, built in three by five cards and the like, but do I use them? No. I go back and change and change and change. It’s an addiction I tell you, and not a good one.
Now, I’ll freely admit to being a “pantser” rather than one who makes copious notes and reams of character sketches before a single word of the story hits the page. Perhaps this is where I need to change. I don’t know. Every damn time I try to outline a story first, I wind up tearing my hair out, getting drunk, slamming my face into my keyboard, and wanting to just say “Fuck this” to the whole story idea.
Somewhere there must be a middle ground. I just have to find it, lasso the sucker, and throw it on the grill before I fry my brain.
If I have any brain left that is. Personally, I have doubts.