The Murky Quagmire of Writing

Dear Novelists Who Neglected to Plan,

I have this novel that I have been coddling for the last two-nearly three-years. We’ve had moments where we were totally into one another…and moments where we lost touch so much that we didn’t even have anything in common anymore!

I have written and rewritten, but mostly I have procrastinated. You see-this novel represents my very first real attempt at finishing a book project. Who knows…it may even be my last. I jumped into this idea without even so much as a summary and I certainly didn’t have a plot map! Yikes! I know, you seasoned veterans who may be reading this are cringing. To be honest, I am cringing right along side you.

I don’t know where this story will go, or if it will go at  all. However, I have to say that since there was very little of this story that was planned, it seems to be writing itself. It has grown and developed and changed over time. I believe I may actually have hit the teenage years of this novel’s life because it is getting quite angst-y.

I cannot say that I regret this grave writing error. I cannot even pretend to be disappointed; because while my first draft is a complete catastrophe and certainly far from written-this novel has been one of the biggest adventures, most passionate relationship, and most soul-searching quest of my life.

I’m far from through my hero’s journey. There have been many dark nights for this writer’s soul. I have often felt like simply running it through a paper shredder. However, after 21,034 words I certainly can’t turn back now.

If you are an aspiring writer…and you have made the plan-free jump into writing your first book, I encourage you not to give up! You will hit road blocks. There will be many days-weeks even- that you do not know which way to send your hero (or antihero). But this story is in you, and it longs to come out. We may not have chosen the most logical road to writing, but it sure is an interesting one!

Love,

Sarah

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3 thoughts on “The Murky Quagmire of Writing

  1. I can totally relate! I have one story in particular that I started when I was like 10 or 11 and I’ve still writing it today (although it’s not THAT crazy considering I’m only 14…so it’s only been like 3 years). …Well, sort of writing it. I’m forever distracted by other story ideas and novels and everything else that seems more important. One of these days I’ll finish it!

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    • I had a manuscript that I started when I was about 13 I suppose-aaaand the hard drive crashed. I never recovered it. I remember a lot about it, so maybe I’ll bring it back to life sometime. ALWAYS have a backup hard drive! Also, sticking with something for that long is a wonderful thing. There are so many ideas that I’ve abandoned out of boredom. I’m sure when you do finish it that it will have been worth the wait!

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      • Thanks! Yep, having something you’ve written get deleted can be SO annoying. I just had that today, just a short summary that accidentally got deleted, and I had to write it out again. Not only do the ideas have to be the same, but sometimes your sentences are perfect and you have to re-write them and try to remember what you wrote.
        The story I’m writing now started from something I wrote in grade six. There are so many possibilities when it comes to story ideas, many of which I’ve thought of when I was younger and forgotten about.

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