Monday, April 13, 2015

cleaning up

I have finished another draft of Will-o-the-wisps Warp.  Now I just wait two weeks to get a proof and start all over again.  Sigh.  The life of a writer.  No, really.  I enjoy this stage of editing.  I've gotten through most of the crazy of making it make sense.  Now is the time to go through and make it pretty.  To work on the quality of the writing instead of just the big picture.  Both of them are exciting in their own way.  But this one was a real mess to clean up to this point, so I am hoping this next time through will be more fun.

Of course, even if I wasn't waiting for a new proof, I would set aside a version for a couple of weeks before starting over again.  The mind needs to lie fallow so that when I go back to it I can see it with as fresh eyes as possible.

That, and finishing a draft comes with an incredible crash.  That first draft is the worst, but every time I get through with a draft I have this adrenaline let down of having worked so long for so hard and really pushing it as I get near then end.  I feel wasted tired and washed out.  I usually get sick.  This time I watched three X men movies in one day.

Of course, there is the other side of finishing a draft and that is that I return to my own world.  It is a family joke that I am a slob.  My sister-and-law Evette once asked me when did I ever clean.  I told her, "when I'm not writing."  She took that in for a second and then laughed, "Bets, you are always writing!"

And I am most of the time.  But when that crash comes I come back to this reality and there are some things that just need to be dealt with.  The deeper into a writing project I am, the worse it gets.  I will wash the same set of dishes over and over rather than fill the dish washer.  The laundry has gone undone.  Most of all, my project has spread all over my house.  Scraps of paper with notes.  Piles of journals with different ideas in them.  Flurries of scenes with corrections on them have made it all the way through the house, from piling on chairs to falling on the floor and getting stepped on.  Reference materials pile in teetering masses.

And it is time to clean up.

It is time to return to other normal things as well.  Such as watching movies, reading, beading or drawing.  For a few short weeks, I work from other parts of my brain.

Other than the fact that at this stage of the editing game, there isn't much creation going on anymore.  It is all refinement.  Which is dandy by itself, but I can't last very long without creating.  Which means by this stage of the game I am already at least mentally and sometimes somewhat guiltily on paper racing on to the next project.

So by now I have Wooden Weft pretty much mapped out.  The next step would be to actually start writing scenes, but I hesitate there as I don't want a new project to take time away from getting Will-o-the-wisps Warp done as soon as possible.  I don't want to begin a new book that I will then want to continue working on when I should be editing my little behind off.

At this point my brain is still a little too taxed to get into anything new and creative anyway.  Finishing that beading project or starting that picture I've been setting up for still sound a little ambitious.

So I am off to do the laundry, and the novel idea of getting to wear clothing that isn't my back up, back up, back up wardrobe.  Hell, I might even fold some of it.


  1. Fold, what is this fold? Need I remind you there are five Die Hard Movies and six and counting Star Wars. You can procrastinate for nearly ever without fold. I am not even a writer and can think of hundreds of non fold things that accomplish nothing.

  2. Your process pretty much matched what mine was, when I was writing and/or trying to write novels. It was worse before computers, as far as paper scraps.