Writing: Finishing a Draft Dilemma

 

October.

This means that fall’s foliage is at its’ peak, and the sugar beet harvest is in full swing up here in the Red River Valley of North Dakota.

I woke up this morning to the ground covered in a thin layer of frost.  Even had to turn on the heat briefly.  With the warm air blowing through the vents, I counted at least four of my ten indoor cats huddled on top of them.

Darn, should have snapped a pic.

Next time.

October is also the month to prepare for NaNoWriMo (aka National Novel Writing Month) so I’m taking a month-long course with Beth and Ezra Barany to help me plan a novel idea I have.

 

Like I said in a previous post, I have little problem with finishing short pieces, but a book-length?  It IS like running a marathon (I’ve ran 5-ks in the past so I can only imagine what 20-plus miles would be like!) where I almost always fizzle out by the middle, and that’s it.

Finito.

I either lose interest, or life gets in the way, or writer’s block sets it.

Excuses…excuses.

Excuses won’t get the book written.

I need to really look at why I’m not finishing.

Am I meant to be just a short story writer?

A poet?

I’m unable to accept that.

I can’t.

I won’t.

I may never be a prolific novelist like Stephen King or Nora Roberts, and that’s okay.   I just believe that I have at least one book in me that I must write.  And this what’s been driving me to try again and again.

A quote by Maya Angelou keeps haunting me:

“There is no greater agony than bearing an untold story inside you.”

Now that I’m middle-aged, I have this growing fear of dying before I’m able to complete the kind of writing I was meant to do.

It’s a horrible feeling.

One that’s growing worse by the day.

The only one book-length manuscript I managed came during the 2008 NaNoWriMo, and that’s because of my curiosity to see if I could actually write at least 50,000 words.

Since then, all my attempts to write another book have failed.

I think it may be because those stories were not meaningful to me.  They were just stories that I had a vague interest in, but as I laid down word after word, I lost interest.

I find that I can’t devote hours and days to something I have no real passion for.  Life is just too short.

In my heart, I’ve always wanted to write a story that revolved around fatherhood and daughters.  This desire…no, need have grown exponentially since my Daddy’s death in September 2014.

Three weeks ago, I saw a particular news article that gave birth to a story idea for such a book.   In taking the above course, I’m working to develop this idea, flesh out the plot/subplots as well as create my two main characters.  I plan to use NaNoWriMo as a jump-start to write as many words as I can, but the goal isn’t to win, but to ultimately have a finished first draft by the end of the year.

I believe I have found the reason and motivation to drive me to be successful this time.

Stay tuned for more later.

 

 

 

 

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4 thoughts on “Writing: Finishing a Draft Dilemma

  1. I am at that stage in my life, also. Middle age. I discovered I was introverted less than two years ago. It answered so many questions about my personality and my social troubles. If I had lnown 25 years ago, I would have changed my path then, but it is never too late. I have changed that path now and like you, I worry about advancing age and what I call my wasted years. Years without a purpose might be a better phrase. My creativity is put to full use. 100% , no wasted moment of not listening to my Muse, who was always there.it’s hard to put in words. I was creative, but I didn’t realize how creative I could be. I have been such a user of the internet for years and never knew I was introverted. How I missed that baffles me. A close friend told me to look into it. She thought I was and I am. Turns out she went to college for psychology. I hope you tap that keyboard till its hot. You have it inside. Figure out how to transfer your thoughts to the tip of your fingers. It’s not easy but you can do it.

    Liked by 1 person

    • Thanks so much for your encouraging words 🙂 I tend to be an introvert as well. Large crowds and noises overwhelm me. I’d prefer a much smaller setting if I do go out (a group of 3 is usually best for me).

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  2. I’ve been starting to feel a little of the same worries you are. And I too fare better with shorter pieces. Which is not acceptable because I have so many full length novels inside me. Have a file folder full of them. My problem is that I get stuck in the middle, so it’s my plan to start writing from there.
    Good luck with your prepping and in NaNoWriMo. That novel inside you will come out!

    Like

  3. I’ve just been reading about NaNoWriMo and wondering if I should try it. I don’t think I could get that much written in a month, or even if I do it won’t be very good, but I’m thinking it would still be a good experience. I wish you the best of luck in getting your novel finished!

    Like

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