Sheer, utter, unbelievable

13 Nov


That number in my NaNoWiMo widget is true. I have not yet even cracked the 10,000 word mark for Margit, my wee little novel. And I could spin a marvellous tale about how my characters are morping in and out of form, becoming uncontrollable, insisting on being bitches, and not following instructions. I could talk about how I drew out a plot map, leaving enough “what if” holes, and they STILL act like men and refuse to follow it. Attempting to bend their will is like trying to bend mine.

But mostly, I’m lazy. Their story, and ultimately my story about becoming who I am, does not seem to want to be told right now, despite the fact that Margit sits next to me on the bus every day, and Lila stares at me, hostile, from the back. I get home, boot this sucker up, and play Civ II. The other night I plugged in about 2000 words or so I guess. Deleted a bunch. Said screw it.

I’ve always been a “seat of my pants” writer. I always believed in a “muse”-I’d write excellent papers the day they were due in 2 hours in the middle of the night having only read half the book. But as I’ve grown older, I’ve discovered that writing is actual work, hard work. Keeping my characters focused, deciding where I want them to go, forming their experiences, and their effects…it’s fucking HARD. Writing was never hard for me. Or at least, poetry and short prose wasn’t. And actual novel-difficult.

I’m writing what I know, to a degree, but amplified. But I also have this urge to start over, to crumple my words into my virtual wastebasket, and find a new and better story to tell. Yet I know this is my usual “it’s to hard wah wah!” routine, so I fight it off.

I’m thinking that Margit will sit on my desktop, ignored, visited from time to time. What I wish I could do is transfer the words from my head to the page without the effort of writing them. The story is all there. It just gets stuck in my wrist.

3 Responses to “Sheer, utter, unbelievable”

  1. karriew November 13, 2006 at 5:20 pm #

    I never realized how difficult it is to write something every day. I’m even struggling with the blogging challenge, which I thought would be laughably easy.

    Basically, tell me I have to do something, and I don’t wanna.

  2. nicole November 13, 2006 at 9:42 pm #

    Just the fact that you’re even taking a STAB at this is amazing to me. I don’t know if I could ever pull that off!

    Not that I ever really planned to write a novel. The idea scares the hell out of me for some reason.

  3. Missy November 14, 2006 at 11:11 am #

    I think it’s awesome that you’re writing a novel. (hey my comments are going under your sidebar–If I have any typos, that’s why). Anyway I think it’s awesome because I know how ‘effin’ hard it really is and I know the kind of butt in seat time it takes. Don’t ever toss it, even if you get tired of it and set it aside. You may come back to it years later and find it’s the story you need to tell. Whatever. Anyway, keep it up. Keep trying to write. If it’s difficult, it’s probably worth doing.

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