Saturday, January 10, 2015

"The act of writing is to share a part of your soul with the world."




   I recently realized, I really don't talk about writing much here on my blog. You may say Ha! What are you talking about? You're always talking about writing! Well, compared to the amount of time I spend thinking about writing, and actually doing it, I don't share much about it on my blog. I was thinking recently, I would like to change that. I generally like to keep my writing very private-- no one but my best friend  has ever read any of my novel, and I don't even talk about it much to my family-- but recently I've felt the need to just get out some of this unbearable passion and excitement that's building up within me. It can become quite too much for one person after awhile, as any writer knows. :-) As I've been reading friends' writing blogs, I've realized I really should express my writing more through my own little corner of the web here. So I guess you could say I've been inspired. Unbelievable, isn't it. ;-P

   I've been writing more in the last year than ever before in my life, and even more since the new year started. I feel more inspired and more determined than ever before. As you might know, I'm currently working on my first novel-- my first REAL novel. It's a project I started last June, and worked on steadily throughout the summer. But then, around November, I started feeling uninspired, and I lost my motivation. I let it rest for about a month, before I realized that the problem was I was going about it all wrong. The story had turned from its original planned direction, the characters' motives were all wrong, everything was just wrong. That was the reason I was getting so bored with it. 


 So. I did the only thing I could do. I changed everything. Which, in this case, meant starting over at the beginning, re-writing the first chapters I had written, rearranging paragraphs, and cutting out huge parts. People, you do not know pain until you have to cut out huge chunks of your novel, especially when you recall how much time and effort you used up in writing it. There were times when I felt like, okay, just kill me now please. But like I said, it was absolutely, totally necessary. It had to be done. And you'll never guess what.

 It was all worth it.

  I'm now about 60-something pages into the revised version of my novel, and I couldn't be happier with it. I was afraid of making changes, afraid of what would happen, but when I actually bit the bullet and did what deep down I knew I HAD to, things started coming together so fast it made my head spin. 

The famous American actress Lily Elsie-- she's kind of my model for Addie

  The main thing I had to change was my main character, Addie. At the very beginning, I'd started out with a very definite idea of her and her personality, her dreams and her motives. It went along fine for a while, but then she started to change into someone I didn't want her to be. Her character was weak. My writing was weak. I finally realized I was making Addie too much like myself. Addie's not like me. She's Adelaide Jane Taylor, a starry-eyed girl with a dream and a desire to destine her own future, to be the mistress of herself and have the wealth and privilege she's always wanted. That's not me. Before, Addie was just too nice. People who are just nice are boring. I want Addie to be captivating, infuriating, memorable, strong, immortal. And it took awhile for me to understand her-- my own character I had created-- but now I do.

   My writing journey of the last month has been amazing. I've started keeping a sort of writing journal, where I write down the things I want to express in my stories, all the things I'm concerned about, all the things that need to happen, and it's helped me more than I'd have ever imagined. Because sometimes I just get so full of everything and it's unbearable for me to keep it inside, so I more or less have to get it out in some form or another.


   I write because I love to, but also because I have to. Sure, I could go for a while without writing, but if I neglected it altogether for too long I might just go mad.  Passion is unbearable sometimes! That's the thing about having such powerful emotions; you can't always keep it locked up inside. Sometimes you just have to let it out, or else you'd explode. That, my friends, is why I write. That, and because I love it and I know it's what God wants for me. I've never been good at expressing my feelings or thoughts vocally. I can't think that fast and my tongue trips over the words and it hardly ever comes out as I want it to. But writing is different, because somehow, strangely, when I have a pen in my hand the words just flow out of my like water from a spring. Suddenly I know exactly what I have to say. I can't understand it, but there are just some things I'm not meant to understand and I think this is one of them. Sometimes I think the Lord likes to keep me guessing, just so I don't get bored or lose interest in what it is I'm really meant to be doing. Just imagine how boring life would be if I knew everything; there would be nothing left to learn, never any new ideas to explore, no exciting bursts of new inspiration. Boring! Nope. Never doubt for a moment that God knows what he's doing.


  I'll never be a natural speaker-- so be it. I don't even want to be anyway, because then I wouldn't be me. But I am a born writer, and I'm good at it and getting better. I can feel it, when I write; a satisfaction, a fullness, a resonance of pleasant contentedness, while feeling forever discontent because there will always be more stories to write. :-)



   So that's just some of what I've been feeling lately as far as my writing. I'm so excited, impatient, hopeful, and I have a new determination to do this thing. It's giving me goosebumps as we speak (wait, maybe that's just because I'm in the basement and it's cold down here....no, couldn't be). It's so nice to have a place like this where I can share my crazy, scattered thoughts, and I know there's people out there who actually care enough to read it. Congratulations if you got through all that! Now go back and count how many times I used the word 'writing'....just kidding. ;-P
  

4 comments:

  1. I love your blog. I LOVE YOUR WRITING. I luuuurved this post.

    Anyway, aside from agreeing and 'me-too-ing' and loving this post, about you having to cut stuff: Elizabeth Musser had to cut 30000 words from 'The Sweetest Thing.' JUST IMAGINE. 30,000 words is almost as long as my Anne of Gables Green. Poor her. She talks about it in the end, with the acknowledgements. Maybe you've read it already.
    Anyway, I cordially salute you for do that... it most have been so hard for you. (But rest assured, *I* would have loved a loooong version. You are honestly one of my favourite writers now. I'm not saying that because you're my bestie, it's honestly true. You are SUCH a born writer.)

    I would find it SO hard to cut out stuff, but with me it's normally the other way round: I don't write enough the first time, and I have to go back and write more around it. :-)

    ~ Naomi

    PS You have two Montgomery quotes on the sidebar! Yay. I approve. :-) Also, that picture of the Edwardian girl walking on the sanddune... you snatched it from me. :-P

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  2. Always a joy to visit your lovely blog, Emma! Continue to be inspired and write, dear ~ it is a wonderful gift:.) Blessings to you, Kelly-Anne

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  3. Oh, I'm underlining every. single. word. you said!!! (Incidentally, even to the goose bumps---though for me it was more frozen fingers on the keyboard this morning. ;))

    Truly and honestly, since Thanksgiving my current WIP has undergone a gigantic shift, too, and I know exactly what you're talking about....

    My main character's had a tremendous conflict revolution (which is hugely exciting!) and half the setting has changed (which was agonizing). That might sound a bit strong, but I really loved (and still do love!) where I had it---but changing it, the entire story has taken sudden fire, and now bits and pieces are flying up and spinning into place almost faster than I can catch them! :) It's thrilling and (this might sound dramatic), but this morning before chores, I was actually almost crying with excitement, jotting down a new development. :)

    It's all amazing, isn't it? This writing business.... The hurt and the exhilaration, and then the rightness when you know you're writing the story that has to be written now.

    Did that all make sense?? :)

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  4. I rarely write much about my writing on my blogs either, but I love to discuss everything about writing with other writers, so I will joyously read and respond to all sorts of writing things you post!

    Like you, I don't speak well, either in public or even in conversation. I like to arrange my thoughts before I speak, and sometimes I never get to join a conversation because by the time I have my thoughts in order, the conversation has moved to a different subject. And I'm terrible at making small talk -- my brain freezes and I can't think of anything to say, sometimes even with people I know really well. But give me a pen or a keyboard, and my words pour out (usually). Just a different way of communicating that works better for me than physically talking.

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