Juice: what we write to

Nine notebooks of writing went into the ‘throw this out box’ last night. Maybe 10.** I don’t want to count because I might open one and read a little and turn a page and then it’ll all go to hell.

People who can write a blog and mine it for book material later are people to admire. I’m so not one of those people. I can think of 5 good reasons why I have this writer’s handicap, but there’s no point complaining about it. Fiction just uses a whole other part of me, a part that takes only certain ingredients and equipment along.  I struggle to write a blog. I don’t struggle to write a story.

Pen touches paper. Pen writes. It has to be a pen. Used to have to be a good pen, but my chiropractor made me stop. My beautiful Waterman, my romantic Montblanc were put away, in a secret place where treasure goes. It turned into a secret when I forgot where the place is.

When the pen stops, I start editing and lose most of what’s been written. Sometimes, I never return to what I wrote, but start all over on a scene. It’s strange to find the same scene, written at two different times – times separated by a month or more – and find that I wrote virtually the same thing.

This is the juice.

I haven’t written fiction with any intention for years. I’ve written scripts and marketing material and little thought pieces and short essays, but not fiction.

I’m starting again. I must be thirsty.

** 13. There were 13 notebooks.




9 thoughts on “Juice: what we write to

  1. I struggle with blog posts….mostly because I am so depressing and depressed. The few good things I did write were about my doggies and kitties…..because before there were kitties I deeply loved a few doggies. Fiction is all I read…no non fiction, no biographies, auto bios, no travel, nothing but fiction….I can seriously see landscapes in my mind, how a person looks, be in the story as one of the characters….maybe the fairy tale girl in me but as an adult. As for “editing?” Can’t do it. I can go back and re-read the few stories I have written and I just lock up. Crack open those notebooks girl. I am all eyes.

    • I so understand. I just do. I do, I do, I do. I’m always surprised by people who read only fiction. And are you particular about your fiction? Oooh. Bad question. Do you read A particular fiction? I’m so crazy about non-fiction, I couldn’t in 5 zillion years NOT read it. But good fiction? Good fiction’s the best.

      And since you’ll soon be writing a little something to be published – you CAN edit. You can. It’s the other half of writing. The question really is WHY you lock up. Editing is just … it’s magic.

      And finally. I actually considered just opening one of the notebooks, picking just some random page and typing an excerpt. And then I changed my mind. Because I’m pretty smart that way. Ha. :):)

  2. I can pretty much read any fiction except the chest heaving, crotch grabbing romance stuff. Non fiction usually has some pretty sad, depressing parts and I generate enough of that myself. Maybe I’m just not interested enough in real life or real people or maybe I’m nervous about relating too much. I took down the one post that I wanted to save for a children’s book, but when I went back and re-read it I used way too many big words…..like….vantage point….what kids knows what that is? If I change parts then I get all jumbled up and just feel frustrated. I’ll maybe bring it up….maybe.

    • What strange timing. I JUST wrote about big words. But that’s the beauty of editing. You got your idea on the page and now’s your chance to clean it up. You don’t have to vacuum with writing – just throw the extra stuff away or put it in an empty closet, if you have to.

      I guess that’s part of it. Teaching yourself to let go of the frustration. In my experience, that’s there for everyone, but it’s really the craft of writing to learn how to write around it or through it. I can not wait for you to decide that ‘maybe’ is a good thing and to bring it up. yay!

  3. That may have been an audible gasp when I saw that you were throwing away 10, no 13, of your notebooks. But then since I don’t write by hand (it’s some poor penmanship, I tells ya) I suppose deleting old blogs is kind of the equivalent, and maybe I shouldn’t do that. But I get why one does.

    • It has to be exactly the equivalent and maybe you shouldn’t (well, if I was you, I wouldn’t, but that’s because your old blogs were some of my favorite things. And back when there was no Facebook stuff to distract, I read a whole lot of blogs, so I consider myself quite the little know it all-y about this stuff).

      I’m sure there were a few good lines, maybe even paragraphs, in one of two of my notebooks (as opposed to the many MANY good lines in your blogs) but … oh I don’t care. If it was cooking before, it’ll cook again. (Or maybe not. In which case, I’ll have to come up with a different recipe.) Wow. I sound really zen and cool about it, don’t I? I HAVE thrown out bunches of notebooks before only to discover that something I really cared about was in them. I pouted.

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