Confessions of a bad novelist

You know, even after all this time…after years and years of messing around with a self-proclaimed novel, I still cringe a little at that word..

Novelist.

It’s kinda on that same level as “moist” or “tentacle” for me. I’ll whisper it on the internet, type it into conversations with others regarding the work that I am somewhat trying to do, but then I’ll almost look around. As if someone will pop up behind me and tell me ever so politely “Sorry, dearest, but you’re not quite there yet…I’m afraid you’ll need to be a 26 level merchant wizard warlock to qualify for that title, and you’re currently just a level 3 yard gnome. Maybe next year?” Then I’ll flush in embarrassment, duck my head, and acknowledge that I probably knew that all along.

So how much do you need to write to qualify? Do you need to actually finish a novel? Publish a novel? Should I just be a “wannabe” for the time being, until I feel I’ve earned my stripes and qualify for this promotion?

As far as I can tell, there are no rules, and if someone tries to convince you that there are rules…well, bollocks to them.

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In my very limited experience, I think the biggest obstacle to actually finishing this first very rough, rough, tree-bark rough, first draft, is the niggling feeling that you’re doing something you’re not supposed to be doing. That this is a sad, secret dream that you have been holding, that’s hidden from the actual real parts of your life…the grocery shopping, family dinners, work meetings, and things that are just more…tangible. So you take your laptop to a Panera Bread every now and then, write out a scene, and pat yourself on the back for being creative. I don’t really want to accept that reality anymore.
So, today I took to the Internets. I childishly Googled “Best Writing Websites.” I’m not entirely sure what I was looking for. Some website that says THIS IS THE SECRET TO WRITING, or maybe an online writing group where I could work on practicing the more technical aspects of writing, maybe combat my commas obsession. I didn’t find any of that specifically, but in one corner of the Internet, I stumbled across:
thewritepractice.com

I can’t really give you a lot more information than that just yet, but I will tell you that I joined their online community. It’s about $15 a month, and provides access to a community of people that are actively working toward the sames goals as you, or have even accomplished those goals and could assist in your sprint towards the finish line. I have high hopes that maybe talking about it more, actively practicing with weekly writing prompts, and maybe just taking a pen to paper without all the crazy production I seem to require these days as I psych myself out of actually accomplishing anything.

Serena is whiny today.

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Alright darlings, I have some work to do.

xx S

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