While the world continues to spew out things for people to be outraged about (e.g. global warming, coronavirus, Donald Trump’s lack of impeachment *shocker*), I have been more or less distracted by attempting to write a fucking novel.
Why did I decide to do this?
No seriously. Why?
I actually had to ask myself that question last week and remind myself what my original goal was. I had to seriously ask myself that question, because I feel completely out of my depth for the first time since starting this project. This is the first time I’ve felt defeated, distaste with my own work, annoyance at the areas I struggle with and have been wondering if being an author of contemporary romance is really my thing.
These sort of moments are so disheartening.
Not to mention soul-destroying when I keep comparing my first attempt at a story to those of experienced, published authors. I know I shouldn’t do that, but I can’t help myself. I find myself devouring fiction in a matter of hours, putting those books down and thinking how the hell does the author do it? Characters in my favourite stories seem so vivid and realistic. They have backstories, little habits subtly described on the page and before I know it, they’ve come to life for me. I imagine they’re real people living out lives in other universes.
My current draft DOES NOT read like that.
And that’s not me fishing for compliments or being self-deprecating either. I know my story:
- lacks depth
- needs to have a slower burn
- needs more detail about character traits and habits
- could include subplots
- and many other things swirling around in my brain.
And while I know improvements will come with the re-write (which I can’t wait to get cracking on), I also don’t want to draft up something that’s ultimately shit as fuck. So eloquent, I know, but I’ve been struggling with words lately. Can you tell?! insert eye roll here *and then another eye roll)
It’s probably the C in me (and no, not that type of C).
I’m talking conscientiousness. My work did DISC profiling recently and to no one’s surprise, my key traits fell into the area of ‘C’ people, who:
- enjoy independence (enormously)
- objective reasoning (yas)
- want the detail (could not like this enough)
- fear being wrong (I HATE being wrong)
I can handle being wrong about little everyday things, but I hate the thought of producing something that doesn’t hit the mark 100%, the first go. It makes failure and rejection all the more traumatic really.
‘C’ people will generally need to expend more energy to:
- let go of and delegate tasks (I’d rather just do it all myself, because I do it best)
- compromise for the good of the team (I do this begrudgingly, but I can do it)
- join in social events and celebrations (I’d really rather not)
- make quick decisions (I don’t know what this means)
I got distracted talking about myself again and forgot my point.
I guess what I’m saying is that all signs point to the first draft being very bleh and I am struggling to cope with that. I’ve had lots of thoughts and questioned what my future in writing looks like, but I’m persevering all the same. At least once everything is done and dusted, I’ll know whether I’ve got the skills, or I don’t, to continue down this past.
Cross your fingers and toes for me guys.