Wednesday, December 16, 2015

Writing is a Lonely Business

Stare out the window. Wait for inspiration. Nothing happens. Stare at the computer screen. Wait for the words to appear. That doesn't happen either. Get up. Get a snack cup of jello with pineapple tidbits. Sit back down. Type out a few sentences. Delete. Go to the kitchen. Open the refrigerator door. Mull over the the leftover burrito, wilted celery, processed cheese spread. Shut the door. Sit back down. Repeat.

Such is the life of a writer. But then we have a moment when something does happen. The words do come. The sentences form. Paragraphs grow. A scene is created. A chapter. A first draft.

We revise. Rewrite. Revisit. Show it to an agent. Get rejected. Revise. Rewrite. Revisit. Show it to another agent. Get rejected. Repeat.

I'm just here to tell you, it's okay. Stock up on the jello and ramen noodles. Stare out the window. Put down a word. Delete and repeat. Don't give up. I mean, what else are you going to do? Watch Law & Order marathons? Spend half a day going through Facebook feeds, wondering how that meme about the drunk friends is really so funny it makes Janet from telemarketing cry, as the emoticon suggests?

Being a writer can be a lonely business. Until the characters develop. Until the story evolves. Until our minds are so full of souls whom we've created we can barely move. We stop craving the wilted celery and processed cheese spread and rejoice in the company or our characters. That's why we write.

Get a coffee mug, a pin, a desk mat that has printed on it the adage "A successful writer is just an amateur who didn't give up." Every time you think it's not worth it, let your eyes fall on that cliche and get back to work.

That's what I've got for today. I would love to read your comments.

by Eileen Albrizio

When the new day comes,
reward yourself with words,
invent fantastic worlds,
travel to phantom places,
embrace all that seems impossible,
rejoice in who you are.

               ~ From The Box Under the Bed