September 29, 2016

So, I'm Writing A Book....

You probably don't know this, but I'm in the process of writing a book. Two books, actually. I started the first one, now at over 25K words, two years ago next month, and to put it lightly, it's kind of my child. Without my consent, it evolved into a YA novel of sorts, and, also without my consent, I sometimes fear that there's too much of me in it. I've been told that this is a good thing, but I can't help the little pools of fear that start to bubble up inside me when I think of the day that someone will read my first draft. Is my plot realistic? Could this actually happen? Are the characters believable?

Then I stop to think, of all the books I've read, which ones stand out in my mind. All of my favorites, the novels that I'd recommend to anyone and couldn't put down well into the night, are not the most realistic. Yes, all of the characters are human, and events aren't absurdly extraordinary, but the plot isn't always plausible. And then I realize that it doesn't matter one bit whether my story is realistic. I remember exactly the reason why I love to write so much: what I write can be anything I want it to be. There are no standards to abide by. There is no set of creative guidelines that say that what I come up with has to be one thing or another. I can write, quite literally, whatever I want (well, within legality... I'm not about to go on a libelous tirade or anything).


I've loved to write since I was a kid, and I've always been "The Grammar Nazi" to my friends. I do try to keep things a little more colloquial/reader-friendly on the blog, but I know my formal writing  style translates into what I write for TIOTP. I've written all sort of content: articles for my high school newspaper (I was a copy editor one year and the news editor for two) and college publications; short pieces for an online music magazine; my two in-progress books; journaling for my own self; and now, this blog. I also kind of enjoy writing essays for class just for the excuse to write; granted, my enjoyment depends on the topic, but hey, judge me.

I gave all that background so that I could talk about my novel. Well, I won't tell you much about the actual novel (sorry... remember what I said about it revealing too much of myself?), but I'm going to tell you a little about the process of writing it. It just happened one night, an October evening during my freshman year of college. I'm pretty sure I was mindlessly pinning things on Pinterest when I decided that I felt like writing. So I started writing. And I kept writing. And what began as what I thought might turn into a short story has since turned into something much longer. It's still about 25K words too short, but it's thousands more than I ever thought it would be. Or could be.

Words don't always come so easily, though. I won't write a sentence for weeks at a time, and then one night (like this past Saturday), I'm hit with a wave of inspiration and write 1500 words in one sitting. All I can think about for days after is when I can write again. I'm—happily— in such a place right now, but there are times when I think that I'll never finish it, that the next scene will never come together, and that the book will stay stuck, unfinished, forever.

But, as always, the feeling passes, and I'll make big progress with character development or a plot twist and be motivated all over again. The stages in the cycle of writing are often spaced out, and, as  I mentioned, there are weeks that I won't type a word, and, though this can be discouraging, I'm going to keep writing because that's who I am: a writer.

What keeps you going as a writer?

5 comments

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  2. THIS POST IS SO INSPIRING TO ME THANK YOU FOR SHARING IT. <3 Oh man the writing struggle is real. I totally relate to that feeling of "omg this book is never going to be finished it is just perpetually stuck" BECAUSE I HAVE FELT THAT SO MUCH AGHHH. But yes, that's all it is -- a feeling -- which WILL pass. ALTHOUGH DARN IT'S VERY DISCOURAGING SOMETIMES LOLOLOLOL.

    What keeps me going as a writer?? I'm really tempted to scream PINTEREST here but I'm trying to be a mature adult (AHEM) soooo I'd have to say that the meaning behind my books is what keeps me going. That and simply the joy I get out of writing. It's what a love and I feel on fire when I'm writing/thinking about my books. :) SO IDK HOW I'D LIVE WITHOUT WRITING, REALLY.

    LET ME KNOW WHEN I CAN PREORDER YOUR BOOK, OKAY?? BEST OF LUCK WRITING IT DEAR! YOU CAN DO IT!! WITH SOME WAFFLES PERHAPS. <3

    lotsalove,
    abbiee

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    1. YOUR COMMENT MADE MY DAY THANK YOU FOR POSTING IT :) I'm so glad that you got something from this and that you feel the same way! I've never thought to use Pinterest for writing inspiration before, so I'm definitely going to look into that, "mature adult" or not haha. I can't imagine what life would be like without writing, either. And waffles are the best! :)

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  3. I always get so so excited when I find other bloggers who are working on book projects as well & reading these kinds of posts is so inspiring to me!! :) I wrote a book for my dissertation at school this year & now I'm in the process of outlining my first 'real one'. Not that the first one wasn't a real book, but it was more like a school project after all. Even though I haven't started writing it yet & am still working on planning the plot and developing the characters I feel like there will be a lot of me & my own thoughts in it as well. I can't wait to hear more about your story & your progess, this is so exciting! Best of luck with your writing x

    Sara’sChapters

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    1. Thank you so much, Sara! Honestly, writing a book that holds so much of me is nerve-wracking, but it keeps me going because it's relatable and makes adding to it feel really natural. Best of luck with your new book :)

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