This is a tough novel I am working on. It’s nothing like I’ve ever attempted before. I have said this before but I will say it again mainly because I am still trying to process it all out and come to grips.
If this was just another novel I would be hitting my stride right now. I’ve done that before, written novels. But I am trying to do something new and different here. That is to say, new and different for me. I am challenging myself and I like that aspect of it, even though it is frustrating.
I am a big one for telling my writer friends they should push other things out of the way so they can concentrate on story. But sometimes that’s just impossible, even for a person like me who has made Pushing People Aside So I Can Write into an art form. Sometimes you have to bow to outside pressure and that’s part of the problem. Outside forces and influences have impinged themselves collectively upon my time and it’s hurting this nascent creative work on the novel. I haven’t found my voice yet for the book or completely wrapped my mind around what I want it to accomplish.
Again, if this was just another novel I wouldn’t be having this problem. But this is a different thing for me here. I am really pushing myself to understand what the novel is about and how I can write it the way I have envisioned it. Tough. Hard. Difficult. Especially when life’s vicissitudes get you by the throat.
One good thing, however. Next week it appears I will finally be left alone to work on this novel. Now I can start pouring all my energy and thought processes into the novel and let it germinate properly. I hate having to be interrupted at this delicate time of starting a novel. If I were deep into the book already it would be different. I’d have the voice down, tone, pacing, and could juggle things a little better. But this is the creative process.
I don’t want any interruptions at this point in my life! Let me get this thing straight in my mind and understand what it is all about, then you can bother me with your unimportant problems.
This is what writing is about. It’s hard enough without people around you making it even harder. To be fair, they’re not doing it on purpose. They aren’t writers so they don’t understand how delicate this phase of creativity is, especially when you are trying to write something that you know is already a challenge.
But that’s why I want to write it. Because it is a challenge. I want to see if I can do this or not. Maybe I will fail. It wouldn’t be the first time. But I want to at least have the chance to fail.
Writing is a solitary exercise. At this point in the creative process it’s a necessary element. For me, anyway. And even during the best of times writing is 90% mental. So I need the alone time to hash this all out and understand this darn book.
I just want to get out of the blocks and onto the track. Once I’m running I can deal with interruptions better because I will feel more confident about what I am working on.
I guess we will see how it all pans out.
3 Replies to “Frustrated Writer: Finding a clear path through life”
Thanks so much for your encouraging (to this writer) HONESTY! Once again, I would refer you to McCarthy, but I truly think if you re-read his Border Trilogy, and plug in your gut reactions to the venues, characters, and actions of your own plot, you will benefit.
I read No Country for Old Men and Blood Meridian. BM was an influence for this novel I am currently working on. I started All the Pretty Horses but set it aside because it wasn’t what I thought it would be. But I have decided once I finish the book I’m reading now I will give it another try. I like his vision a lot and how he assembles language.
Yes, Kenneth, he assembles language with a minimum of glue, yet enough to push each word into the stark light of day to make us admit who we really are and are not!