I am kaitco

a writer's log

Writing Recovery Friday, July 26, 2013

Filed under: Dorienne,Writing — kaitco @ 5:14 pm
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Whether it was from the absolute stress and nervousness of sending query letters or completing a project that has encompassed so much of my life for the past 4 years, I’ve spent the last week languidly procrastinating as I sought a new purpose. For the first time in AGES, I did not have a chapter to complete or several pages to revise and I found myself unable to do much more than sleep or read and then go back to sleep. It wasn’t until Wednesday that it occurred to me that the efforts of finally finishing a novel were taking their toll, but this shouldn’t have come as a surprise to me.

When I finished Evan when I was 15, I was still recuperating from my second ankle surgery and still on Christmas break, so my fatigue was well-expected and its source went unnoticed. When I finished Alex when I was 17, I was getting ready to start school at Ohio State, but I remember a week of stomach-gnawing stress and fatigue that I’d attributed to nervousness about starting college. When I finished Flight, however, when I was 22 (I guess; I’m too lazy to look up the completion date at the moment), I was preparing to graduate and, in posting that final chapter, I was ill and generally fatigued for weeks, which is why I couldn’t even think clearly about Damen until March-ish of 2009.

So, here I am, with another book finished and just as much fatigue as I’ve encountered with the previous ones. Unlike the other ones, I have nothing on which to place the blame. I’m not recuperating from surgery, or starting school, or finishing school. Now, I can see what writing a book really does to me and how much of myself I pour into every word. It is, without exaggeration, an exhausting process.

Today, however, I am quite refreshed. To occupy my time, I watched North & South and then read the book and then watched it 2-3 times a day and also while I slept and then re-read the last few chapters of the book again. To avoid fully falling into some OCD spiral, I refused to watch the film again yesterday, but still finished the book. I’d like to read the novel once more as I’ve started to read it like I read Persuasion or used to read Goblet of Fire; i.e., I read through favorite scenes, stop, and then re-read those favorite scenes a couple more times before progressing with the remainder of the book. That said, I know a cycle when it’s coming and it’s best, for now, that I move onto other things.

I’m not entirely sure what I will focus on writing this weekend. I’d like to write a poem or two in this “As…” project I’ve created and, while there’s no cure for the old novel like starting on the new novel, I’d also like to write something completely outside of anything I’d like to see traditionally published. A good ole’ fashioned SVU fanfiction or something, just to get the gears moving without wearing them down too soon.

Oh, well; we’ll see. It’s just as likely that I’ll spend the weekend playing games (dear God, that Steam sale!), so we’ll just have to see.

 

The fourth day Saturday, June 25, 2011

Filed under: Writing — kaitco @ 11:19 pm
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After I’d finished writing yesterday, I decided to take all my new Harry notes and add them to the old file. I searched for ten minutes before I found what I thought was the old file, but after reading through 20+ pages of notes, I remembered that there were some great scenes I’d written that weren’t included, so I off I went further into to the folders of shared drives across my three PCs in search of this file.

On this journey, I found what I can only describe as “old friends” neatly tucked away in various folders. I probably scanned through several dozen little beginnings of stories while searching for this file, many I could barely remember starting and many more I couldn’t remember the story. Instead of watching my movie last night or even reading, I spent the majority of the night reading through a dozen of my long, but harried notes from one story and then another.

I made a lot of X-Files stories in the past decade and if I make it to 100, I probably still won’t have enough time to flesh out the dozens of book and short story ideas I’ve got littered around my external hard drive. Some of these notes hadn’t been touched since 2003. 2003! I may have been 19! To think that I’ve got all these stories just sitting there…waiting for me.

I have to say that stepping away from the Xbox and the television has made everything appear more vivid. I’m suddenly anxious to do nothing more than write and read, read and write. As if taunting me with the desire to finish all my unfinished stories, I even got a message on an old SVU fanfiction I haven’t touched since 2009 asking me to update. I took the story with me today and if I hadn’t had so much actual work to complete, I probably would have at least read through what I’d written.

I wrote 623 words tonight (started down the hall where Anthony had pointed) and unlike with most nights earlier this month, I’ve not had to struggle for each sentence or stare blankly at the screen wishing for inspiration on how to link two parts of the same scene. I’ve not even had to do more minor note-making before beginning my prose; I just sit and I start writing.

I’d like to think that some of this has to do with writing this scene where Damen goes church and, if I’m honest, it probably is. The best thing about it though, it that it’s got me excited for the first time in ages to get to church. I want to go to Sunday School. I want to hear the message. These are really the only two things I want to accomplish tomorrow.

Since I won’t be nerding it up and playing Rock Band or watching Frasier all night, I hope to be asleep at a decent hour so I can successfully make it to church and Sunday School on time. It’s the fourth day without my usual distractions and I already feel cleaner.

 

Twenty-six pages later… Friday, June 4, 2010

Filed under: Writing — kaitco @ 4:08 am
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I’ve been writing almost consistently for the past week. While I wanted to have Chapter 3 complete before the end of May, I’m glad I’m not rushing it.

This draft has been shaping quite differently from the last. It is almost as if I’m using the original draft as a guide to write the novel. Pieces that I had spent a lot of time shaping the first draft, are being either lightly touched upon or glossed over altogether in the second. It it is almost like I’m working off what I call “heavy notes” for this draft, but I refuse to call it that, because that means I didn’t have anything worthwhile complete in 2009. That’s not quite true though; as I learned with Flight, the “heavy notes” are a big part of the process and once I’ve got those together, the novel sort of shapes itself.

I’ve almost been jotting little notes on the iPhone here and there for the makings of some Star Wars stories. I remember saying to myself, not too long ago while making some edits on Wookiepedia, “I really don’t have a story to tell when it comes to Star Wars.” Lo and behold, as I was taking down my braids the other night, a story came to mind and just developed over the next day. I can’t wait to get really started on it. In fact, I can’t wait to just have a fully complete draft of the novel so that I can justify writing anything else at the moment. I’ve got an SVU story and now a Star Wars story just waiting to be written and I’d like to write them before I get too bogged down with other stories and forget. There’s also a Harry Potter story I’d like to write before things get too hectic as well.

Man, I’ve got a lot of writing to do. I’ll have carpal tunnel before too long for sure!

 

 
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