Tuesday, February 21, 2012

Concerning Hobbit Drafts

First: this. What a desperately needed shot of frustrated genius (and pathos). Happy birthday, DFW, and Godspeed.

Second: Today I've decided to put my Fictator hat on and just deal with these deaths that I don't want to write in my horror novel. Since I discovered a back door to one of the deaths I didn't enjoy writing, I've pondered taking that back door for some of the other deaths as well, making for sort of a death-free horror novel. Everybody gets a pass; readers' hearts need not break. But this is stupid and wussified and I know it, and I really have to just get on with it and kill (kill kill) instead of waffling like crazy such that no work at all gets done.

There. Bam.

Of course, since I haven't written in a few weeks at this point, I had to go back and refamiliarize myself with what I'd written before I buckled to waffling. I thought of the draft so far as a sort of Uruk-hai in utero, something that I'd need to scrape the mud off of and wince at, rather than the pleasing elf-creature that I ever hope for when I think of my writing. What I found was better than I thought. More like a hobbit.
Lucy was not behind her. She was not finished with Lucy. She didn’t know for sure that if the devil offered to bring Lucy back, if he sidled up in a red bodysuit and plastic tail and dickered with her for something (for anything, if she was honest), that she wouldn’t listen, wouldn’t consider the bargain. 
It needs work, naturally. It will always need work. Hobbits are not elves, and unfortunately never shall be. But I don't feel so overwhelmed anymore. Uncertain, mournful, mad at myself, reluctant, all those things, you bet. But not like this thing is going to swallow me up. It only took Matt to remind me that I am, in fact, the boss of my characters, and a dead virtuoso to remind me that all writers get frustrated, to get me back in front of my real work.

Too much other work has been a distraction lately, dammit. I wish it was easier to remind myself that this is the work that matters.


Catherine said...

I saw this earlier and thought of you but let it slide, but now I can't let it slide: http://yfrog.com/esfflwej

I'm gearing up to re-read Greenland after I first zoomed through it in one go. Then sick and sick and house drama and more sick, but I'm looking forward to reading it again. Sending lots of hugs, and thinking warm thoughts of you killing (killing killing). xo

Katharine Coldiron said...

Ohhhh!! Where can I get that in a poster and a t-shirt and a mug and a tattoo on my brain? Thank you so much for exposing me to it!

I know how you feel about writing, but I would love (love love) to hear what you think about the book. The more feedback with which I can go into the next draft, the better.