Tuesday, May 26, 2009

Writers Block

I really don’t get writer’s block. Try as I might, I can never seem to turn off the voices in my head, so not knowing what to have my characters say really isn’t a problem for me. I started writing a YA novel last April. I finished the fifth draft in December. If I went for 24 hours without writing it felt like an eternity.

I commute by train and brought my laptop with me, so I could write everyday on the way to and from work. Typically my characters would scream at me all morning, and I would have a very hard time focusing on my actual paying job. So I’d pull out my laptop and write during my lunch break. I often didn’t even bother turning off my computer at the end of my commute home, knowing I would just write all evening.

When I finished my fifth draft, I was pretty happy with the story. That was the first draft that I didn’t imedately feel compeled to change the POV, or kill off half a dozen characters. So I sent the draft out to some beta readers and took a break from my insain writing schedule.

About a week after I stopped writing my novel, I decided to start writing my memoir. I got about 80 pages into it after a couple weeks of writing. The problem with writing a memoir, is that I know what is going to happen. It’s my life, I’ve already lived it. So I don’t have any burning desires to get everything out of me. I’m not rittled with curiosity, eager to find out what will happen next.

I do plan on finishing my memoir at some point in time, but I haven’t written anything new in the story since January. Instead I have resorted to daydreaming about the characters in my novel. They are all teenagers in the book, and very interesting people. I decided I had to know what would happen to them. So I let them grow up.

Let me get something clear. I don’t want to write a sequal. I’m never going to actually write down the stories I have been dreaming for the past four months. I just had to dream them. I had to know what was going to happen to these characters. I don’t want to read on the train, because I like the stories in my head better than the stories in books. And I don’t want to write on the train because I’m not planning on turning this particular story into a novel. I just have to day dream. I have to know this story, even if nobody else does.

So this leads me to my pacular new stage of writers block. I haven’t worked on my novel for almost five months. I’ve gotten feedback from my beta readers, and I know all the changes I need to make in the sixth draft. But I don’t want to. I can’t bring myself to actually write anything, because I’m having to much fun daydreaming – about the grown up versions of the characters in the book I’m supposed to be writing.

What do you even call this crazy condition? It’s not writer’s block. It’s dreamer’s flood.

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