BLOG - February 2017
You may remember that I have written about the questions asked me when I gave talks at my book signing events. Mostly the readers want to know how I get my ideas, or how do I develop my characters, and if I use an outline (plotting). But they never ask me how I feel when I sit down at my computer to begin my novel after I’ve completed all the preparations. “Do you ever fear that you cannot write it?” should be a question.
To answer this question, I’d like to give my answer, summarized out of three quotes below, that are used by authors to inspire them.
“Every writer I know has trouble writing.”
“To write something you have to risk making a fool of yourself.”
“You don’t start out writing good stuff. You start out writing
crap and thinking it’s good stuff, and then gradually you get better
at it. That’s why I say one of the most valuable traits is persistence.”
-Octavia E. Butler
The three quotes above describe my feelings when I’m beginning a new novel. While I don’t really have that much trouble writing, I do believe at first I try too hard for perfection and that gets me nowhere. In the back of my mind, I hear that “little critter” demeaning me with: “You can’t write. You’ll just make a fool of yourself.” But now I’m able to shut him out. I learned after writing three novels that when I begin a novel I have to concentrate on the story and not the sentence (grammar), and not worry if it is “crap.” All writers have learned that their best friend is revising the “crap.” So, we live by the rule: “Revise, revise, revise.”
I have finished all my preparations for my fourth novel, and now I am getting ready to write my first chapter. With three novels published, I have learned a thing or two, the most important being: I’m ready to write the “crap” and then I’ll revise, revise, and revise.