free-writing: another distraction revealed
I have not yet been able to replicate Monday's magic so far this week. Tuesday was a very low-output day. Today was better, but nothing compared to Monday.
I want to hit those high numbers repeatedly and consistently. I don't want it to be one day of magic followed by several days of faltering and stumbling.
Sure, where I am today is way better than where I was a year ago, even a month ago! But I want to writer better, faster and I am hungry to keep moving in that direction until I find myself competent enough to produce those words at will.
I think I may have found another culprit. Yesterday, I had a rest day – which was ok in itself – but at bedtime, I started reading a new book, a new work of fiction. It's a great work, it's quite gripping and I love the story and its twists. I think that's where the trouble is coming from.
Because even though I can now resist from picking up the book to read during precious writing hours, when I'm in the midst of reading a good book, my manuscript starts to look really bleak and boring in comparison!
And I don't feel any motivation to carry on with the story and find out where it leads. I feel stuck, unsure what to write next.
So this is another lesson learnt.
When I'm working on a WIP, I'm not going to pick up any works of fiction to read. If I need to read at bedtime to fall asleep, I'll stick to non-fiction. Something inspirational. Something motivating.
And when I've finished my WIP, I'll reward myself with a reading binge.
So that's going to be my plan of action from now on until I finish the current WIP. There are days when I love this story, and other days when I am full of self-doubt and I wonder if the reader will see through the utter drivel I am pouring out on the paper/screen.
A reader's perception of my work is one thing that is entirely out of my control.
I myself have experienced this as a reader many times. In fact the book I'm currently reading was one I had discarded after having read about 10% of it in a previous attempt months ago.
There are so many aspects that influence a reader's perception and reception of a book. The state of mind they are in, their background, their experience at and up until that point in time, what they feel like reading – something heavy or something light. There are so many factors it is impossible to predict, and even more futile to try and capture.
All that we can do, all that we ought to do, is simply focus on writing and telling the best story we can.
So that's a lesson learnt today. With that in mind, I'll sign off for today.
Image Attribution: Photo by 🇸🇮 Janko Ferlič on Unsplash