Notes on Writing, 11/8/08

I've been writing. Not everyday, but so far more days than not. It is so much harder than I thought it would be. I've felt more fragile this week, more inclined to cling to people and to avoid being alone. I think it's because my self-confidence is taking a hit during these early morning writing sessions.

Here is what HAS been helpful, though. I keep a notebook next to my computer as I write and sometimes jot down notes about writing. Sometimes they're related to the structure and details of writing fiction; other times they are attempts to cheer myself on. I think I'll publish them here every so often (so long as there are notes to publish). I know that I would be comforted by reading a blog that divulged notes like this and so maybe some of you who write will appreciate them as well.

*Telling a story vs. living a story
*Think content, not implementation
*If it's not working, move on and fill in the blanks later
*Ask Charlie Baxter if he ever thinks he's crap when he sits down to write
*When it's not working, try 1st person or 3rd person
*Ask the character what story she/he wants you to write about today
*Don't jump to interpretation! That's not your job!
*Don't ask "where will that lead me?" It's not important. Don't try to control it.

Good god, this list sounds like a freaking therapy session. I will add only one more thing, both to comfort myself and other writers out there. It is always awful for the first ten minutes. After that it's still difficult, but I begin to make progress.

Cue metaphor about running.

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