Sunday, October 30, 2011

The Writing Process

Hello everyone, I hope life is treating you well.  Things are good here in my neck of the woods.  I hired an editor to help get my novel up to par.  No doubt it's going to be a lengthy process, but in the end, I'm sure all my hard work will pay off (gotta remain positive, right?). 

While reviewing my novel I got to thinking about each author's process.  What took me two and a half years to write would have taken Stephen King six months.  I read somewhere that he writes eight hours a day, seven days a week.  I've also heard that authors should draft at least a thousand words a day. 

Well, I have to dispute this.  I don't think there should be a set rule for writing. What works for one person may not work for another. I don't get caught up in the word count. Instead, I try to concentrate on the quality of work I produce in a day. In order for the words to flow, I have to be well rested and ready to write. On the occasions when I didn't feel like working on my MS., but forced myself to do so anyway, it was as if my muse took a sick day and forgot to tell me. The pages of drivel that came out of those times were not worth the effort.

Over the years I've learned to listen to the signals my body sends out. Sometimes I'll write eight hours a day for three weeks straight, producing several pages of prose I'm proud to read. Then, out of the blue, I'll wake up feeling disgusted by the thought of writing another word. There have been times when I've went as long as two weeks without writing, but when I finally returned to it, the words flowed again.  Long and short of it, I've decided that each writer must do what works best for them.  So what if it takes me a little longer to get to the end of the tunnel.  What matters most is that I make it there.

Do any of you throw word count to the wind when writing, or am I in the minority?  What is the force that drives you to complete your work-in-progress?  I'd be interested to know.     Until next time, happy writing.