Resolution. It’s a strange word. New Years are all about resolutions, aren’t they? About hopes and dreams for the coming year, because let’s face it, we fumbled last year? Am I right? Up until a couple of years ago, I used to do resolutions, vague ones, but I still used to make them (in my head). I’ll do this this year, and that. I’ll achieve dream number 10, then 9 and so forth, and I’ll shed this fear here, and I’ll bravely hurtle down this path here.
Blissfully hopeful. Not that I’m a wise old person now, but a few years do wonders for realism. I’ve discovered a few things about me this year, and it’s only February.
At the screeching end of last year, almost as we were about to say hello to 2018, one of my best friend, who is an artist discovered a curiosity for writing. For the first time ever, she had a story she thought was better in words that in paint, so, I being a writer and wanting to focus ‘more’ on my craft this year, we made a pact. We were going to do our own version of Nanorimo. We were going to do Janorimo, in January! (Aren’t we clever? LOL).
She was going to attempt her first ‘novel’, and I was going to finally start writing my ‘script’ that I’d been contemplating for a month or more, maybe more, I can’t quite remember. She began writing hers, contemplating whether she should write in the first person or third person. I being a fan of third, kept on suggesting thrid. I think she wrote in first. The point is, she began writing, sending me a little sample to read and critique. I on the other hand, only ‘contemplated’ my story. I was far too busy thinking excitedly about the cruise my hubby and I was about to go on mid-Jan. I even took my notebook on the cruise, I swear, with the romantic heart of a writer who thought she’d have time and energy to sit out on the balcony, staring at the big blue and write a murder mystery.
How did we go? Ha! I didn’t. I mean, every time I tried to sit down and write the story, which had been living in my head for months now, I froze. I’d start writing the outline, cause I figured, if I figured out the story properly, all I have to do is go and write it once I get back home. But I froze, few paragraphs in. Stumped. Rebecca had better luck than I did. She wrote quite a few chapters before she too hit a snag.
Janorimo was a fail. We had both aimed to at least have a draft done by end of Jan, and then help critique each other’s work to improve upon. I failed more epically, as I wasn’t able to write any more than several versions of the start of my story.
So back to resolution. Number 1 had failed. What was my second resolution? I’m not an outliner! Nauh. I absolutely suck at it. I’ll outline it in my head but getting it on paper is so confusing for my brain. When February crawled around, and I was like ‘holy crap, 1 out of 12 is gone’, I thought, stuff outlining, I’m going to do what comes naturally to me, which is just ‘begin the damn story’, and write till I get to the end.
I love that saying, I don’t know if you’ve heard it before, the one that says the first draft of everything is shit, and the trick is to just think of it as shoveling sand into your sandbox. You can always use tools later to mold that sand into a sand castle, but you need all the sand in the box before you can begin.
Well, turns out, a week ago, I threw out the meager attempt at my script, and started from the beginning, shoveling my sand in that box. ‘Hollow‘ (working title) has now gone from a mere movie in my head to a progressing script 40 pages in in less than a week. HOLY SHIT!
Just beginning the damn story usually works for me. I’m a pantster – the writer that flies by the seat of her pants instead of preparing. I read that term in some blog once, pantster, when this writer was describing her writing style.
Resolution number 2, is now naturally to finish this script as soon as I can so that I can begin molding it into a beautiful, potential feature script. I haven’t been this excited since the story idea popped into my head months ago. My ultimate resolution for this year is to give this story every chance it has to shine; which means I’m going to do my duty as a writer to make it the best it can be, dress it well, and take it out into the world to see if it can fly.