Please Kill Me,
Aloha (alohA?), and happy Thursday my cerebrally closeted cynics. As per usual, I hope that your week is going well and that your fields are fraught with crops (What!? You haven’t been growing your own crops!!! Have you not been watching this election??? IT’S OVER MAN! IT’S ALL OVER! *barricades self in room* ). But seriously – I hope your limbs are all intact -especially because we’re only a few moons away from NaNoWriMo!
That’s right folks, rather than do the free-bird dance through the weeks leading up to -and after- the release of my novel (#BecomingUtopia), I’ve decided to drop these cheeks right back into the crazy chair (as I eat my insanity for breakfast) – and begin work on the thing -that will follow the next thing- that I bombard your inboxes with. So, as I prepare to stretch these (sweet, SWEET) literary muscles – let’s talk about The Cycle.
The Cycle (otherwise known as the bikes more monogamous cousin). I don’t know about you guys but my absolute favorite part of the writing phase is the gestation period. You sit back, you look at the wall, and ponder absolutely every and anything until the idea comes creeping up on you (with it’s Trumpy like fingers #Couldn’tHelpMyself). This, of course, leads to the seed of what will become your story.
Needless to say, this part requires little work on your end -as your rules are yet to be developed- and eventually to the beginning of your own creative cycle (patent pending).
My particular cycle goes generally the same way (much like (for me exactly like) the stages of depression)). I’ll list it out for you (in case you’re a stable human being)-
1.) Denial – *sits at keyboard, stares at clock, hours pass* : “FUCKKK THISS !!!!!” – *runs away crying.*
2.) Anger – *punches pillow, contemplates joining army* : “Oh, fuck this….” *returns to keyboard*
3.) Bargaining – *pours vodka, hands tremble, remembers plot idea* : “Okay, just one outline and I’m done” *begins writing*
4.) Depression – *keeps writing, notices plothole* : “Oh, FUCK!” *turns on sad music, weeps for future readers*
5.) Acceptance – *creates major twist that fixes plothole* : “FUCK YEA!!!” *puts on “Saving the World from Evil” playlist -powers through a chapter.*
Okay, I’ll admit, my process is a bit drastic (and profanity-laced) – but I’d like to think that it’s my metronome (or a red-flag for schizophrenia) as I work on the path to achieving the ever-present end game -it all begins here.
You see, the cycle is something akin to a meditative mantra. Everybody has some sort of methodical process to kick them into high gear. It should neither be ignored nor underestimated.
As writers, we are constantly put off our game by external (people) and internal (the people in our heads) issues. The cycle is us -processing all of that, internalizing what’s useful, and abandoning all else. Though it may not seem apparent on the surface -these steps catalyze emotions that will be reallocated for better use. This, in turn, not only assists us in our focus and concentration but also helps to empower our mental stamina. As we flow through our Cycle we manifest the writer that we truly are at the time – the only writer who can put those words on that page, and make the story breath.
So, as you prepare your pens and pads (screens and tablets?), for the arduous 30- day haul, or whatever it is you’re about to create – give yourself a moment to flow through your Cycle – engage with it, let it break you – so that you may rebuild with the creativity that remains.
The Writer’s Block Podcast tomorrow – and back to the weekly Recap after that.