It’s been a while since I’ve been around. Sorry about that. But there’s been reasons. Some pleasant, most not so much. Depression acting up again and the emotional fall when unrealistic expectations don’t come around all add to the fact.
Plus there’s this lime jello that I’m currently eating….
I mean I’ve had some bad jello in my life, but this stuff takes the proverbial cake. And now that I think about it, the same goes for the Chinese food I had last weekend. Disgusting stuff.
But that isn’t what I want to talk about. Nor is the depression. I’m dealing with it and trying to get past things with help and meds. ‘Nuff said. No, what I wanted to say was I’ve stopped writing for a little bit. Or maybe it’s better to state that I’m coming back to writing after a bit. Six of one, half a dozen of the other?
Now, I think that it would come as no surprise to find out that most of us writers out there are self-taught. Some things are just better learned hands-on by doing it over and over, day after day. How do we become better writers? By putting the proverbial pen to paper again and again. They say practice makes perfect, right? Well, perfection may be unrealistic, but we always shoot for it.
And my writing has been getting better. I will admit that it might not be terribly obvious here, seeing as I don’t feel that my writing style has changed all that much on this blog. But blogs are for talking, and here I write how I talk, full of mismatched sentences and run-on thoughts. Writing a story or a novel is totally different. We have to create coherent thoughts that has a precise direction in order to create that narrative.
You know that. I know that. We’re on the same page.
Right now, I am writing some of my best stuff. Emotional wordplay that affects me for hours after I’ve finished. Fantastic scenes which are solid in their description and objective. I could go on, but I’m sure that you don’t want to hear about me beating my own chest, so to speak. So why did I take a break then?
That whole narrative thing. It implies that there is a direction that the story is heading. That the reader’s time investment is worthwhile because we’ve created an engaging story that draws you in. Makes you want to live it with the characters and see the world through their eyes.
Yeah. That wasn’t happening.
Sure, I wrote some great stuff, but it was all disjointed and put together with shoddy reasoning. I could do better. I knew this. My wife knew this. My beta readers knew this. It got embarrassing to show it off. While the sentence structure was a thing of beauty, my story was a flop. To put it nicely. So I had to fix that. But how?
College and university professors regularly go on something called a sabbatical. I’m sure that we’re all familiar with the term, if not exactly what it means. Essentially, these professors leave their day job behind in order to pursue greater understanding within their field. Sometimes this means compiling information and writing a book. Some times it means sifting through old records to dig out unknown nuggets of information. Other things. Essentially what they are doing is growing their knowledge on a subject.
And that’s what I’m doing. I’ve taken to reading and learning about story structure and development. Learning what roles characters have in a plot and what the different thresholds (I didn’t realize there was more than two) in a story symbolize. Other important stuff. And I’m learning a lot. I can tell you that I won’t ever think about Star Wars in the same way again.
I’m no where near done either. But I don’t know how much longer I can wait to type little words across my computer screen. The hands itch and the fingers wag in preparatory warm-ups. Maybe I’ll give in today. Maybe next week. But the end is nigh. The only real question is what genre will it be?
Not sci-fi. I’m sure of that.
If you find my blog interesting, please check out my debut novel, The Red Dress!
The Red Dress is a contemporary mystery awash in colorful characters, witty banter, and—let us not forget—murder. That’s what happens when love and politics mix. But not all is doom and gloom. There’s also knitting, romance novels, and a smattering of cooking. If you’re a fan of the genre or in the mood to try something new, give it a shot. I’m sure that you’ll love it.