It’s the time of year when you don’t have time to read blogs and I don’t have time to write one.
Wait – that’s not seasonal. That’s normal. And doesn’t really change anything, because what I was getting to is the fact that this post is going to be short and to the point.
Today I am preaching the righteousness of honoring your own process.
Got it? You’re smart. I’m sure you do. I will elaborate in case you’d like to read further, since you’re already here and all.
Everybody out there on the internet is going to be shilling some sort of writing process, like carnies at the fair. And, just like at the fair, if you fill yourself too full of cotton candy and corn dogs and elephant ears, it will be fun for awhile and then you’re going to be sick.
The cat, currently shredding my thighs and critically reading what I write, all under the guise of loving me dearly, tells me that this is a bad metaphor. But we will carry on.
The point is this. If you’ve been writing for awhile, you’ve already figured out what works best for you in terms of drafting, editing, and revision. Maybe you can make some tweaks and streamline your process, or make it more effective, but you – because of who you are as a person – will have strengths that lead you to work in certain ways. If you’re a newer writer just getting the hang of this, by all means try on different methods but pay attention to yourself and what you already know about how you get things done.
If you are brilliant at procrastinating and pulling rabbits out of hats at the last minute while drinking ALL THE COFFEE, that’s probably going to be where your best writing comes from. And if you’re a planner who lives life around the dictates of calendars and schedules and spreadsheets – this is probably going to be yours. Whatever it is – honor it. Work to your strengths. Don’t let somebody try to convert you to the Faith of Freewheeling if your a planner, or the Church of the Grand Plot if you’re a pantser, or try to get you to worship at the altar of Daily Word Count if that doesn’t work for you.
Yes, you need to study craft. And you need to write regularly. You need structure to your books and they need a plot and pacing and they need to be edited. But the HOW and WHEN of that all happening is entirely up to you.
Now – go forth and write things.