Saturday, March 29, 2014

Fits and Starts: Drips and Drabs

I've actually written a fair number of words lately but ultimately have not made a lot of "progress." I've started four different projects that would be novel length but all four fizzled out fairly quickly. One will eventually be finished; I just don't really feel like working on it right at the moment. Of the others, one will probably go nowhere because I was trying to capture an urban fantasy vibe and it just isn't my genre. I've tried it before and never been able to complete such a piece. I know what the problem is on the third work and it needs rewriting because my scenes were too much telling and not enough showing. That I can do but I've got to get the energy up and school has been pretty draining lately.

I did finish a couple of short stories and some memoir stuff. Some of that is submitted now and I hope for good results. I've been noting a decided lack of focus and discipline in myself of late. I know what I need to do but I'm not feeling too guilty about letting the work slide. Anyway, as I've learned over the years, even putting words on paper in drips and drabs can result in finished work. It just takes time.

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20 comments:

Erik Donald France said...

"it just takes time" hits the nail on the head. Time + concentration [and/or zen flow] = ordered text -> eureka / presto ~>

Fragments summoned like bits of metal to a magnetic field . . .
or a waterfall of energy . . . or, maybe, a windfarm of fury . . .

David J. West said...

I hear you Charles, my output the last year or so has been rather lackluster, but we do gotta keep on keeping on.

Brian Miller said...

it can...its why i keep my notebook handy...scribbling out ideas...and when i have the time and discipline i am ready...hey at least you have the ideas....

Oscar said...

Good luck on your submissions, Charles.

Charles Gramlich said...

Erik, I really like "windfarm of fury!"

David J., that's the only way through it.

Brian, ideas are hardly ever a problem..

Oscar, thanks, man.

Ty Johnston said...

Charles, in no small part because of my wife's health problems, my writing of late has been sporadic at best. 500 words a day has been a good day for me. But I just finished the first draft of a 160,000 word novel. Took me three times as usual to complete, but it's done. So, I feel your pain, brother.

Keith West said...

Even if it's only one or two sentences, keep plugging away and don't get discouraged if your word count isn't as high as you'd like. Any progress is better than none.

sage said...

I feel as if I have been in a writing funk for about two years and haven't written a lot except for what is required for work... I am always impressed by the volume of material you put to paper! Hopefully you'll break out of it soon and again amaze us with your words. These attempts of writing in an urban fantasy may help restore your creativity in another genre.

jodi said...

Charl3s, I +hink +h3 +hough+ pu+ in+o wri+ing can b3 jus+ as impor+an+ as +h3 word progr3ssion.

Charles Gramlich said...

Ty, that's one good thing about writing. it's cumulative. I keep trying to tell my students that. Not sure they believe.

Keith, yes indeed. I think part of it too is that my mind hasn't quite been enthralled by any of those projects, which doesn't mean it might not be soon.

Sage, this makes the second time I've tried urban fantasy and had it fizzle out on the vine. I once tried a time-travel romance and the same thing happened.

Jodi, it would appear you are writing in an interesting code here. :)

Bernard Lee DeLeo said...

It's the main reason we don't quit our day-jobs, my friend. That starving artist stuff is overrated. :)

I still think you'd have fun using all the anecdotes, humor, and dialogue from your years as a professor with a paranormal and horror tint.

Riot Kitty said...

I agree - it does take time. You do so much other stuff as well!

Cloudia said...

Sounds like a maturing work ethic, Charles





ALOHA from Honolulu
ComfortSpiral

=^..^= <3

David Cranmer said...

I completely understand the drips and drabs approach.

pattinase (abbott) said...

There are definitely more and less productive times. Spring is usually not my best period. I feel claustrophobic lately sitting in front of this computer so much.

X. Dell said...

Sounds to me that you're just recharging your batteries, that's all. And you're right. It'll come.

Ron Scheer said...

All will be OK.I am waiting for recovery of energy when the cancer gives me a break; In the meantime, I journal when I can to keep the wordsmithing going.

Charles Gramlich said...

Bernard, I definitely don't like the idea of starving!

Riot kitty, this week is particularly busy since we have preregistration.

Cloudia, perhaps so. :)

David, and you have a little one to deal with.

Patti, spring is our worst semester because of students trying to get ready for graduation.

X. Dell, my batteries don't stay charged as long as they used to.

Ron, I know from Lana's experience how exhausting the treatment can be. I'm keeping up good thoughts for you.

Prashant C. Trikannad said...

Charles, I'm particularly familiar with a "lack of focus and discipline" as far as my reading and writing goes, but I'm working on it. "Putting words on paper in drips and drabs" is a nice way of putting it.

Charles Gramlich said...

Prashant, at least they tend to stay on the paper once you get them on, and then you can more as time goes on.