This post is longer than usual, but you wanna read it, I promise. (grin)
Rolled out late this morning at 3:30. Weird. right at 2:30. Things are different when I get up later than usual, especially a whole hour later than usual. Messes up part of the routine.
Barely had time to wake up before I had to let the pets out. Then I started getting ready for my walk, so no writing early.
Good walk, although short at just under 4 miles. Then I had a shower and breakfast and came here to open the journal entry.
Still thinking about my personal goals (writing and otherwise) and putting things away after painting my office and squaring away things from the trip in addition to getting back into writing. There are also some big changes coming up in my life, so that’s on my mind some too.
Nothing’s easy, eh? Then again, if it were easy, how boring would that be?
Topic of the Night: Walking and Writing
No, they aren’t in any way the same thing, but they are the same process.
In walking you just put one foot in front of the other. Those steps become a tenth of a mile, then two-tenths and so on. And those tenths become a mile, then two, and so on.
Moreover, walking doesn’t require conscious thought. Your nervous system and your muscles know what to do. They, aided by the gyroscope that is (I guess) your middle ear, act in concert to propel you, usually in the direction you want to go.
In fact, walking is endlessly more pleasurable if you DON’T give it conscious thought. I’ve gotten considerably stronger, improved my breathing and lost more weight more quickly when I was “just walking” than when I walked “as a workout,” “trying” to improve my health. Seriously.
Letting go and Just Walking is easy. Just let your subconscious take over and do its thing while you enjoy the view.
When I just walk for the pure pleasure of it, I call it “touring.” It isn’t a workout. I’m simply enjoying the rhythm of walking.
I’m also noticing in greater detail whatever scents are on the air and whatever sights are (slowly) passing by to either side. If I see something interesting, I stop and investigate. If I see a great photo, I stop and take it.
And when I walk like that, I go a lot farther with a lot less stress than when I “try” to work out by walking. In fact, “just walking” is so stress free that if I begin to feel fatigued I think, Wait a minute. It’s just walking. There’s no rush, no hurry.
Plus there’s no rule that says I can’t sit down for a few minutes before I get up and continue.
Okay, so what about writing?
Well, let’s draw some parallels. In writing you just put one word in front of the other. Those words become phrases and clauses and sentences. Those become paragraphs and scenes and stories or chapters. Those become a book, either a novel, a novella or a collection. Cool, eh?
Moreover, writing doesn’t require conscious thought. Your conscious mind has absorbed all it needs to know to write a story at your current skill level. That knowledge has seeped into your subconscious, and your subconscious has been telling stories since long before you learned how to form the letters of the alphabet.
In fact, writing is endlessly more pleasurable if you DON’T give it conscious thought. I’ve written considerably better stories, improved my writing rhythms and story telling skills a lot more quickly when I was “just writing” that when I was writing as a workout, “trying” to perfect my skills. Seriously.
Letting go and Just Writing is easy. Just let your subconscious take over and do its thing while you enjoy moving through the story with your characters.
When I just write for the pure pleasure of it, I call it “playing.” It isn’t work. I’m simply enjoying the settings and the characters and their reactions to the setting and the situation. In other words, I’m enjoying the rhythms of writing.
My characters cause me to notice in greater detail whatever scents and sounds are on the air and whatever sights are passing by to either side. If they see something interesting, they investigate and I write it down. When they show me a great scene, I write it.
And when I write like that, the writing goes a lot smoother with a lot less stress than when I “try” to write with my conscious mind. In fact, “just writing” is so stress free that if I begin to feel fatigued I think, Wait a minute. My characters and I are just telling a story. There’s no rush, no hurry.
Plus there’s no rule that says I can’t take a break for a few minutes. My characters know I’m not as young as most of them are. They don’t mind.
Imagine the stress involved if I tried to force my characters to say and do certain things. Ugh. How can that possibly be any fun at all? Well, it can’t.
Even with all the stuff going on that I talked about under “The Day” above, I did finally get some writing done.
When I sat down at my writing ‘puter I was still thinking about setting some new goals and so on. But one phrase kept slipping into my head: Book Nine.
My subconscious wants to continue Wes’ story, so for at least part of my writing, that’s what I’m gonna do. ‘Cause seriously, only a complete and utter moron ignores the subconscious when it’s time to tell a story. (grin) And I am a moron, but I’m not so good as to consider myself “complete and utter.”
So I wrote two short sessions on Book 9 of the Wes Crowley saga. Not bad at all given all the background stuff I have to do at the beginning of each book. And this one is bringing back two big characters from earlier in the series. (grin)
Anyway, all of that led me to set a goal.
I started what turned out to be Book One of the saga on October 25, 2014. My goal is to have finished Books 9 and 10 in the saga on or before October 24, 2015.
I also realized recently that when I was writing a new short story every week, that process invigorated my writing in other ways as well. So I’m starting that self-challenge again, and it’s perfect timing.
Today is Monday. Before next Monday I will have written and published a new short story. This is in addition to whatever I get finished on Book 9 of the Wes Crowley saga.
Should any of you want to join me in this challenge, let me know. I’ll do anything I can to help, except writing them for you. (grin)
Fiction words: 1511
Writing of As Yet Untitled (Book 9 of the Wes Crowley saga)
Day 1…… 1111 words. Total words to date…… 1511
Total fiction words for the month…………… 8960
Total fiction words for the year……………… 451360