I’m in a funk. A writing funk.
I’ve been working on my first novel for a long time. A LONG time. Not always in novel form, but the story itself has been in my life everyday for about four years.
First as a screenplay idea. Then as a TV script idea. And now as a novel idea. It’s taken so long because it is through this process that I have been teaching myself how to write a novel. No easy task. And, apparently, not a fast process, either.
I’m at the point in the writing/rewriting process that I am finding it hard to read a draft and see the story in front of me anymore. I know it too well. I’ve re-written it too many times in too many formats that it’s become matrixed into my brain (you know, where they download how to fly a helicopter into your noggin and suddenly you know everything there is to know about flying helicopters). I read what I think is there instead of what is actually on the page.
I’ve reached a saturation point.
So, I’ve brought in some outside assistance at this point to help me finalize this baby. Readers, editors and the like. Objectivity and brutal honesty is what I’m looking for. I don’t care what has to change, as long as it makes the story better. I am not wed to any character or event with any sort of emotional tie that wouldn’t keep me from killing them off if it would make a more effective novel. And I think that’s the right approach.
At the end of the day, I don’t want to release the novel until it can be the best story possible. Michael Hyatt, in his great book called Platform, calls it releasing a Wow product. It’s not about being a perfectionist (because I am anything but), it is about not settling. If you know it could be better then make it better until its a Wow product.
So, I’ll keep chugging along.
I’m not at Wow yet. I’m probably at Cool or Interesting or Huh?
Hopefully I’ll soon leave this funk and move onto Woohoo when the final draft is finished.