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Monday, 5 October 2015

A day in the life of a writer

Lots of people want to know the secret to being a writer. Lots of people say "I'd love to be a writer, but..." There is a myth and a mystique around writing but as someone who is fairly new to this game let me share something with you - it's just like any other job only you don't have to get dressed or leave the house.

I'm starting a new project. I've written the outline and I pretty much have the path from A to B mapped out. It takes me a while to break into a story, takes a while for the characters to share themselves with me so the first few days are hard. I fiddle around with a first chapter, I tinker and type and try to get inside the lead characters heads. Some days it works, today it doesn't.

When I worked in an office I had days like this. Days when I really couldn't get motivated, days when I would do anything other than the thing I was supposed to be doing and that's why I say writing is just like any other job. And just like any other job, if I don't work then I won't get paid which is why I am sitting at my desk grinding just a few more words out. Just another couple of sentences, maybe even a paragraph.

Even if these words don't end up in the final draft they will be worth it because I have a thousand and twenty seven words to build from. I have a thousand and twenty seven words to edit, to tinker around with while I wait for the story to gain some momentum.

It's not been a great day so far, but I'll take it. The cupboards and the fridge are stocked for the week, the washing machine is churning away, I've sent the emails I needed to. I've finished the book I was reading, I've had a soak in the bath. I've also dropped my phone and fallen off my chair while trying to pick it up off the floor so now I have a bruise on my butt. Shit happens.

Not a great day, not the worst day but I still have a thousand and twenty seven words and that's more than I had when I woke up this morning - could've done without the bruise though :)

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