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Wednesday, January 6, 2010

Writing is....HARD.

Writing is HARD.  [Insert temper tantrum]

Writing is supposed to be easy.  I don't meant the punctuation and all the rules that you have to go back and edit in; did I develop my character/s well enough? does the writer understand the conflict? did I maintain the POV throughout the story?  etc, etc,  That's the part that takes all the fun out of it.

I mean sharing and telling a story.  Though, I am well aware that some are gifted at telling stories and they are the ones everyone wants to listen to.  You've had that conversation before, "No, YOU tell it because you tell it better."

If I'm in a creative flow I love to just sit down at the LT and let my fingers click away.  When my mind is just going on and on telling whatever it is that is spinning around up in there.  Some of my best (most liked) blog posts have been written that way.  Though, I'm a punctuation junkie as I use punctuation to imply a tone or attitude where I am heard in the mind when someone reads me.   Of course, it's not all my fault.  14+ years in the legal field teaches you how to write the perfect three page, run-on sentence.

Other times, it's like I got nothin'.  And, I don't want to bore my friends and readers with a bunch of cr@p (though, I have been know to do so as I love to be heard/read/and I'm a comment h0re.) :-D

I hate those, "I got nothin'" times because those happen either, A) when I have time to sit down in front of a blank screen or, B) when something is actually due/required.

Where am I going with all this?

Well, I received my second writing assignment back yesterday via email.  I was anxiously excited as I worked harder on the dialogue and 'conflict' issues that my instructor had addressed with my first assignment.  See, apparently, when I write I write life all peaches and cream.  So, any conflict in my stories is easily mended and it ends with blossoms and sunshine.  [Kinda' like my outlook on life; do you see a pattern here?]

I did received praise for how well I 'showed' the reader and not just told the reader about what was going on.  "A" on that one.  But, again, my instructor seemed a little lost about where the real conflict was coming from; and, also I changed the Point of View (POV)  in one paragraph from the Main Character (MC) to the antagonist.  By sharing those thoughts I mitigated the conflict - thus, diminishing the impact of the conflicts resolution in the end.  [Personally, I found the conflict very easy to understand, but then it is my story.]

Now part of this, I see my problem being, the fact that I'm a very wordy person.  In Intermediate and High School, I had no problems meeting an assigned word minimum.   In fact, I was always praised for my thoroughness and attention to detail -- and the fact that I wasn't just doing enough to get by.  So, in some ways being wordy is an attribute.

But, I have found with both assignments thus far that just as I'm really getting into telling/writing the meat of the story, I'm already 'at' or over my word count.  So, then I have to finish it and then go back and cut a bunch of stuff out.  I guess, therein lies the problem.  Maybe I'm cutting the wrong stuff?  Either way it leaves me feeling like I had to rush the ending:

Great intro
Captured the readers attention
The reader is interested and wants to know more
The reader is asking 'what happens next and why'
..."And, they all lived happily ever after."

See what I mean? LOL!

[Heavy sigh]  Well, that's what has been spinning and bouncing and menacing in my mind as of today.  At least I got it out.  Now it is back to floors and baseboards and I guess I'll hit the fans too as I am working on that schedule thing to have Fridays open for scrapbooking the family photos.  So far, I'm on task.  I've rescheduled cooking lunch at the school for Thursdays.  I've got my reading in this morning (Gee, Sookie is hard to put down; thanks Lis) and after my chores I shall deal with my writing issues by reading the additional sections assigned by my instructor.

I will say, that this online course thing is awesome.  Way better and more enjoyable (and more doable) than having to run into town twice a week and deal with all the teeny bopper collegiates at the local college.

Happy Wednesday.  It's Hump Day!  Put some Diggity in it!


Melissa said...

First of all, you're welcome. ;-)

If writing was always easy, how would we ever grow and learn from what we do? Just take it one step at a time and do the best you can.

Jay said...

I have the same problem with being wordy. I can ramble on and on and on. In collage I had professors hand papers back to me and tell me to cut it down by however much, say 30%. Everybody else used to get worried when a report had to be at least 5 or 10 pages. I was relieved when they didn't limit us to only a couple of pages.

My blog is even more of a problem. I want to set an 800 word limit because the longer the blog post the fewer the number of people who will actually read it. But, I'm just not even getting started at that point.

Maybe I should start a live journal blog where I post 10,000 rants and see if anyone ever reads the whole thing. LOL ;-)

Jay said...

Uh, that's supposed to be "10,000 WORD rants." ;-)

Anonymous said...

I'm wordy, too. It's been a long time since I attempted to write a story. I've found poetry (esp. haiku) to be challenging due to the word restrictions.

Good luck with Friday scrapbooking. I should do something like that!