The Art of Fooling Thyself

I’m writing this blog post, to postpone getting to my story. Ha! The ways I fool myself, but since something is bothering me I might as well tell The Internet about it. I know your time is precious, so I’ll tell you beforehand that this short post is about me learning how to edit. The title pretty much sums it up. So if you’ve something better to do (like writing haha), then I suggest you go do that 🙂

In my first draft, I wrote my chapter one, literally to set the scene. I wanted to create a dark mood by introducing a person who had zero to do with the main story. She dies at the end of chapter one. I wrote her back in, later in the story, solely for the purpose of letting her live in that first chapter. [Hope you’re still following me on this]. Chapter one was set in Paris, because Paris is cool.

In draft two I realized this is not where the story actually starts. I ignored this for the better part of draft deux. It also started to sink in, that Paris is “used” in a lot of fiction, AND, even though I’ve been there over ten times, I don’t really know Paris. A change of scenery was needed. With an ache in my heart I cut chapter one, and moved from Paris to Amsterdam (a city I actually know). Chapter two now was chapter one, and it didn’t work. A rewrite was needed. It still didn’t feel right. I changed POV from third to first. Better, but still the first chapters didn’t work. Well written, but not enough spark, if you understand what I mean. And after I finish this post it is time, yet again, to cut chapters TO WHERE THE STORY ACTUALLY STARTS. This is way harder than it might sound. For now I’ve rearranged some of the chapters, and pasted them somewhere in the middle. I’m hoping I can still use them, but chances are I won’t. But I deal with them again, when I get there.

Conclusion:

WHAT FUN THIS WRITING THING AND NOT HARD AT ALL –is what you think when you read a finished book.

I AM DYING HERE. WHY DO I DO THIS TO MYSELF- Is how it feels writing it.

Cue Insecurity

I’m in the midst of rewriting a YA contemporary fantasy, and my inner editor is sabotaging the flow. I’ve got a rough outline to guide me through the structure of the story I’ve in mind, I have a Beginning, at least one major Turning Point and an End, so a few of the big building blocks are there. But still I’m creatively stuck. I’ve read/rewritten/read/rewritten some chapters so many times, that I’m bored with my own writing. Cue insecurity.

I should abandon this project.

I am never going to finish.

If I finish it is going to be Boring (yes capital B) and no one is going to read it.

 

Maybe this is the point where I should try to find some Beta readers. Cue insecurity.

 

I won’t find any.

I can’t possibly let anyone read this boring story.

If someone reads this, you are never going to finish.

 

Guess this writing thing means: continue writing. Even when your brain is in the way/ you are bored/ you feel insecure/ you want to abandon the Thing.

 

Send help.

writers in the mist

Sometimes I feel a story buzzing in my mind, chasing thoughts, filling dreams. The story clouded in mist, unwilling to settle form and reveal itself. And I, the writer, find myself grasping the unknown, hoping to find solid ground to stand on. Eyes wide open, ready to snap the idea between my hands.

In the meantime I just write about the swirling colors of the mist, the smell that reminds me of a long forgotten dinner, the sense of hope and doom. I write my way around the mist, into it, underneath it. I write to find the story hidden in it’s core.

I write because that’s what writers do.

 

Eat Dessert First

I started writing my Draft That Must Not Be Named with this quote by Ernestine Ulmer in mind.

“Life’s uncertain …

eat dessert first.”

It hits the core of my story because:

  1. My MC has an uncertain life
  2. Her family has a restaurant that only serves desserts
  3. It tells me what I need to hear (over and over again)

I’ve always known I was a writer. I have been writing stories since I was four and never really stopped. I strayed away sometimes but always returned to putting words on paper.

So Irene (yes talking to myself here) why am I waiting to really pursue this goal?

To be honest: a part of me is afraid to fail. More honest: I’m trying to trick myself to not be me.

Which is stupid and crazy, but true. Maybe I’m trying to protect myself, or others, but I’ve come to the conclusion that I can’t outrun myself.

So where am I?

I’m at a point in my life where I can face myself and no longer pursue time-consuming things that prevent me from writing. I have a job I like, a job that gives me the freedom to balance my life. Writing is going well. Editing is going well, my draft is turning into a story, it’s fast paced, surprises me at times and is really NOT BAD.

I guess it’s time to stand still, examine my surroundings with a fresh eye and eat dessert.

An old fashioned typed up post Hmmm Maybe I should change the title into: a picture of an old fashioned typed up post. And now I wonder how many words you can fit in this title space, and will keep on typing until something says PING. Oh no wait that doesn’t happen on a computer. So what if there’s is no end to this space and I end up typing forever. AHHHH I’m going to stop. Now. Did you know someone tried to figure out how many rows you can add in an excel sheet and that it takes about a day (I forgot the exact numbers). Now I am really going to stop. For real. Stop Irene. Step away from the keys.

typewriterwith tibbe

My Blog is a Toddler

Time swirls by and before you realise it you’re  the owner of a two year old blog.

And like most two year olds my blog has reached its toddler state. It has random fears like: No One Is EVER Going To Read Me and WHAT AM I DOING HERE.

I think it’s also a little afraid of the dark.

Sometimes my blog glares at me for no specific reason or has a tantrum about wanting more attention. It stands on its own for weeks but then suddenly it’s all clingy again.

I adore my two year old.

It helps me face my own insecurities, helps me focus on things I find important.

Yes I know I am talking about a blog. Yes. I know I am weird.

No. You do not need to tell me.

🙂

Try, Try & Try Again

Because it’s probably boring if I type an entire post about the word “try” I livened it up with pictures of The Avocado Project. Here goes:

Step one ->

Buy an Avocado

 

Step two ->

Eat an Avocado

(sorry no pictures of this event)

 

Step three->

Dry for a couple of days

Step four ->

Put sticks into it so it can dip in water

Step five –eight

Wait, wait and wait some more. (think of ridiculous names for your plant to be/settle for Mister Q)

Step nine

Start over again (because kitten thought Avocado Project was in fact a ball)

Side note: I did not overestimate my avocado growing skills and had a plan B, appropriately named Misses Bee. But Misses Bee is not growing, maybe heartbroken for the loss of Mister Q.

What have I learned up to this point? Well, for one thing that I’m not a supertalented avocado grower (is that even a word?) . Also that it’s not wise to put my avocado-in-process pots within the reach of my cats. But most important: if you want something (finish a book/grow an avocado/buy a vacuum cleaner with a name) you have to keep trying. And trying. And try again.

Like the green froglike person said: there is no try, only do.

(something like that anyway, sorry Yoda)

So Do Try. And grow your own luck!

 

( Homegrown Luck ..)