Saturday, Nov. 2
I don’t know what to write about. I don’t want my writing to be boring or predictable. I thought about writing in a setting of a grocery store. They say write what you know. And sometimes my other ideas don’t actually make sense for me to write about if I know nothing of the subjects. I mean, sure, I can write about anything. I just might have to research or study some things. And that’s okay.
But I want the root of my story to be closer to something that I feel more comfortable writing about. Or is it better to write about something that makes you/me uncomfortable? I think that is actually what I would like to write. Something that makes me and my reader feel uncomfortable, and yet so engaged that you want to keep reading even if you are somewhat disturbed by what you’ve read and what I’ve written.
So, what to write about? I’ve gone off the deep end with last year’s entry, and I have to admit I loved it. I loved every minute of writing from this strange and endearing character’s point of view. And I enjoyed discovering new places that the story could take me. And now how do I live up to that? A book that’s written, but not even finished, and still I love the characters as though they were my family. My people. Even though they are horrifying, I have a certain passion and consideration for them. All of them.
I was told to just write as if I were talking to my girlfriends. Be me, but a more brash, abrasive, undaunting version of me. One that says all the horrible things I say to my best friends. One who doesn’t care what other people think of me, one that finally releases all those wacky thoughts from within. And that’s what I need to do to continue to discover and develop my narrative voice. I need to be me, but super hyped up, me sitting on top of a pile of dynamite (think coyote vs roadrunner) ready to write or blow up. I have nothing to lose.
So…that’s the theory here. But how do I put it into practice? Get drunk and start rambling on Skype with one of my besties? Take cupfuls of cough syrup (hey, I DO have a cough!) (and also I am in no way advocating getting drunk off cough syrup) and then write in a trance-like state about whatever speaks to me? Write about this voice that should be speaking to me? Go back to a previous idea for writing, even though I am not feelin’ it? Will I feel it? Will I have to force it? Ah! What is a writer to do?
Could this be (dun dun dun…) writer’s block??? Eeks!
No no no. There can be no such thing as writer’s block (there’s no such thing as writer’s block, there’s no such thing as writer’s block)! I must shoo that idea away and hold tight to the belief that if I just keep writing, something good will come. And until then, I am clearing the cobwebs in my head. Making room for those brilliant ideas to flow freely from brain to pen (okay okay, to keyboard!). But I am impatient. I want to write NOW (yes yes I’m writing, but you know what I mean). I want to write something good, right now!
What can I do to encourage the muses to smile on me and give me something good? Well first of all, I probably need to get some muses. Where does one find muses these days? Amazon.com? Ebay? Craig’s List? And then, I need to drink copious amounts of coffee, alcohol, and water (hey, gotta balance out the dehydration). And then, I eat all the good stuff out of the kids’ Halloween buckets. And then, I sit and stare blankly at the screen, actually staring somewhere up inside my head, sort of right behind my eyeballs and towards my forehead region. And then something appears!
Is it a bird? A plane? A ghost? An….idea???
I could just type out whatever I see. A pumpkin. A pen. A water bottle. Go for a walk. A leaf. A bicycle. A trash can.
Could I begin my story with a trash can? And then what? Where do I go from there?
I think a big part of writing is asking yourself all these types of questions. And continue asking questions until you find one that’s fun to answer. Until one answer becomes a platform for more questions. And then…ta dah! You’re writing! No, I’m writing. We are all writing! (Okay, no cough syrup, but yes I’m getting a little loopy)
My writing goal today has nothing to do with word count and all to do with content. If I could just develop one paragraph even that will give me the starting line. Give me something to go on. And then tomorrow I can be off and running (even though admittedly I hate to run…I’m using this as a metaphor here people). And then it’s a month-long marathon of discovery and pushing through the pain to get to that 50,000 word goal. And hopefully it’s not just 50,000 words of garbage (please pronounce this last word gar-bahhj, it sounds so much more eloquent).
And so, loyal followers (or not so loyal, or new, or old, or maybe I’m just addressing myself), I must now go find an excuse to postpone working on NaNoWriMo (you know, the whole 50,000 word challenge I’m toe-deep in on Day 2). I can go stare in the fridge for something to make itself for me to eat. I can go to Facebook and re-read all the posts from this morning that served as my initial procrastination tool. I can get dressed in real clothes (hey, it’s Saturday, aka pajama day). Go put on makeup to make myself feel better (except I actually don’t feel like it, because lo and behold I no longer NEED to wear it every day and today I feel crummy and I’m okay with looking crummy to match (I’ve always liked matching)).
And here I am, procrastinating my procrastination strategies. Okay, Aimee. Go. Write.
Yes ma’am. (Whew, she’s lost it!)