Thursday, April 19, 2012

On crunches and fiction

Lately I've been trying to get into a routine of daily excersice. Sitting here in my comfy chair, my muscles complaining a little over the crunches I did this evening and from pulling a push-mower up and down a fairly steep slope this afternoon, and me staring at the screen trying to write something got me to thinking...

Writing is a lot like working out.

It takes time. Just like there is no way I could bike five fast miles without working up to it, there's no way I can write a 100k word book and have it be any good without working up to it.

It takes patience. After two days of stretching tight leg muscles, I can't expect to do the splits. After two years of writing, I still wasn't writing anything over 40k words long.

It takes pain. I've encountered some sore muscles while some of my lesser-used muscles are adjusting to being worked more. Last fall, I decided I would be scrapping a half-completed manuscript that currently totaled 50k because it wasn't working well.
Let me tell you...that hurt. A lot.

So just like my current push-ups quite frankly stink, please don't be discouraged when your early writing attempts are less than you'd hoped for.
The important thing is that you are getting practice. You're developing your authorly muscles. Strengthening them. And the more you work them, the stronger they will get. The stronger they grow, the better your writing will become.

- Hannah


  1. Yes, it does hurt when you have to scrap something that you love but just isn't working out. I'm going through the same thing right now. The Lost Room is just not turning out for me and I've decided to take a completely new turn with this. So now I'm rewriting and I'm going to scrap the old manuscript. You're not alone. :)

    1. This comment has been removed by the author.

    2. Oops. Typed the wrong reply!
      What I meant to say was, Wow! How far did you get into the old manuscript?


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