In theory, I’ve been working on Book Two for a little while. But you sure wouldn’t know it from looking at the scraggly little collection of notes I’ve got stored in various places, or from the monotone rambling I do when someone asks me what I’m writing.
The doubt gremlin is still pretty active. It’s harassing me noisily about how this book is a pretty dumb idea and a waste of time.
I respond that it’s all about practice, all about finding that really sweet spot between discipline and play, where I’ll grow my skills. It’s about abandoning the capitalist mindset’s demand for results, and just seeing what is possible.
The two of us are basically at an impasse, meaning I’ve got the following:
- Three (3) meandering outlines of the plot
- Seven (7) characters sketched out in varying levels of detail
- Twenty-two (22) plot points sketched out on one of the outlines
- Unknowable number (?) of scenes planned underneath each plot point
- Four (4) chapter documents created in Scrivener with notes attached, because I spent last night retaking the tutorial and now I’m a genius at using all of the program’s bells and whistles, which is the writing equivalent of cleaning your entire apartment instead of packing for vacation when you have to leave for the plane in two hours
- A vague sense that I’d like to write my SFD (shitty first draft) by the end of the year, just to say I did
- Another vague sense that I should relax a bit and write a different book I can coherently describe to people
At this point, there’s really no excuse not to just start writing. Maybe I’ll treat the rest of 2019 like a prolonged NaNoWriMo and just blindly crunch out 1,000 words a day, most days. At the very worst, this will result in a nice healthy increase in my lifetime number of words written.
Ooh, actually, at the very worst, I’ll become so focused on finishing this silly book that I’ll alienate my boyfriend and friends and family and employer and lose my job and end up a pariah on the street, never to be heard from again. Plus, the book won’t get written, and my pauper’s tombstone will read: “Never finished that dumb book; shouldn’t have tried.”
But that isn’t very likely, is it?