The Idea Bank

No writing today – yet. Sometimes I just cannot push through the lack of motivation to sit down and start typing something out, and today must be one of those days. I cleaned my room, edited a few articles, weeded a garden, spun a flag, ate some food and fed my cat. Basically, I’ve done everything under the sun EXCEPT write. But is this really a bad thing?

No. And let me tell you why.

My brain, when functioning normally, works this way: think, think about doing, think about not doing, think about thinking, think about deciding, do. I’m the type to consider something from all angles before making a decision or acting on a desire – I’m a pro/con list-maker like Rory, without a doubt. Acting on impulse is just not how I tend to roll.

When it comes to writing, it’s a very similar process. Think about my story, think about writing some of it, think about what will happen if I don’t, think about why I’m thinking so much about imaginary people, think about taking the plunge, sitting down and writing, then – finally – write. Sometimes my stories will float around in my head for months before I actually get around to writing them down. I’ve had a particular dystopian trilogy idea shoved into a corner up there for about a year and a half now. Have I forgotten it? Nope. In fact, every once in awhile, a new idea for it comes to mind. I put it with the others and move on.

Why do I do this? Because I’m a college student with two majors and multiple extracurricular involvements. Though I may be a writer, that doesn’t mean I free write every day. I literally don’t have the time. What I do partake in is scribbling – a few lines of a poem at the bottom of my medical nutrition therapy notes is a very common find in my school notebooks. A few lines of rapid-fire dialogue end up on the Notes app in my phone sometimes, too. I use November and July as my novel months – sometimes that’s all I need. As much as I would love to write book after book throughout the year, it’s just not probable. I don’t sleep a lot, but I am human, and I do need it on a regular basis – no matter how much I wish I didn’t.

A long time ago, all I wanted to do was write. All day, every day, for the rest of my life. As a career. I’m not saying I don’t want that now – to be able to write as often as I want to with little distractions. But I’ve also learned that what makes a great writer is an individual with life experience. Practicing writing techniques is great, but you can’t write a great story if  that’s all you’ve ever done. Since adding another area of study onto my English major, I have learned more about myself than I ever would have with my head buried in literature twenty-four-seven. (That still happens – but that’s not where it stops).

Being able to keep my ideas contained until I’m ready (and able) to let them expand out onto paper is not a trait I take advantage of. I think my brain is always coming up with little things – a location here, a character’s insecurity there. I simply deposit them into my idea bank, the section of my brain no one but me could ever access or understand. If I spent all my time writing down everything that came to mind, I wouldn’t have time for life.

And I love my life. I love it more than anything.

Yes, friends. These are the tales of a dedicated college novelist.

Love&hugs, Meg<3

Tales of a Highly Caffeinated JulNoWriMo Enthusiast – Day 27

I have not written much since Wednesday. I should be worried. I should have spiraled into freak-out mode about two days ago. But I haven’t. I think that’s freaking me out more than not having written.

I blame my mood swings. They try to control my life, but I’m too stubborn to ever let that come even close to happening. So I just drink coffee and eat chocolate and it’s all better.

I’m planning on writing after dinner, but I suppose we’ll have to see how much I can get done between then and bed. It’s hard to stay motivated at night when I get up so early. (I know, I know – don’t get up so early and you’ll get more done at night. I’m a morning person. End of story.)

I’ve gotten a few good ideas for Dana’s story, but I want to make sure it will work with the other subplots. I think the original plan in the pilot was to have her brother missing, but the idea of having him in the military appealed to my brain more. I didn’t plan it that way. All of a sudden that’s what was happening and I just decided to stick with it.

I honestly have to let my characters know how angry I am at them sometimes. They have a habit of wanting to take control of their own lives, and as much as I appreciate it, sometimes it’s just not okay. I’m the writer here. If they want to go write their own books when I’m finished with their stories, fine. But while I’m in charge, stick to what I tell you and otherwise keep quiet.

I should get back to writing before they do things I haven’t approved of yet.

Love&hugs, Meg<3