This is timely because yesterday I had one of those days when it seemed like every word I pulled from my brain was the wrong one. Simple scenes were impossible to describe, dialogue was forced and transitions moved sluggishly. I sat before my beloved laptop and engaged in a struggle that lasted for seven hours and resulted in, maybe, a draw. I think my brain had actually been replaced with sludge during the night and this impression was enforced by the fact that the day before I had had a really good day’s work, ripping through almost 150 pages of revision. At the end I actually leaned back in my chair and thought, ‘Wow, this is a well-told tale’ and something I wouldn’t be ashamed to show my agent (after a few more revisions and a session with my beta readers). What a difference 24 hours and the removal of one’s brain can make. Yesterday I was ready to delete the entire manuscript— 211 pages, 56,000 words, 6 months of continuous work. Some of my writer friends refer to this as ‘total suckitis’. Yes, that is the professional terminology. I didn’t experience it with my last WIP. And this time I almost got through the whole novel without the creeping dread. Almost. The only thing that saved the manuscript is that ‘total suckitis’ didn’t appear until the third to last chapter and there’s no way I’m trashing something that is mostly good. For some reason that reminds me of Billy Crystal in “The Princess Bride” telling Inigo and Andre the Giant, that Cary Elwes is only mostly dead. *note- one of the greatest movies ever filmed.* Here’s the clip if you haven’t seen it:Miracle Max/ The Princess Bride There was a breath of life in Cary Elwes and there is a breath of life in my manuscript. I tweeted about my suckage. Got a bunch of heart-warming tweets back from other writers who understand. Their advice? Keep going. Write through it. I’ll take that advice and add pizza for lunch, another cup of caffeine and a lot of chocolate tomorrow when I’ve taken hold of this chapter and whipped it into submission and moved forward, dominant once more. What are your motivators? Friends? Other writers? A stubborn refusal to be cowed by a piece of paper and a bunch of words?

4 thoughts on “Motivators

  1. For me, it's other writers and that feeling of accomplishment. For various reasons, what J.K. Rowling has done just blows me away, and motivates the heck out of me.

    And it is is thoroughly INCONCEIVABLE that The Princess Bride is not universally recognized as one of the best movies ever created.

  2. Yes, some days there's no suckitis. Then other days it's total. Your advice, via your other writerly friends, seems best. Keep going. Write.

    Also don't expect it to be fast and easy all the time.

    After all, "You rush a miracle man, you get rotten miracles."

  3. Moving a little more easily this week. Astounding how much work one measly chapter took last week but I am happy with it now.
    Thanks for reminding me, Marisa, not to expect ease always, and to be thankful when it happens without much fuss.
    Jay- it is isn't it??!!! Whenever I'm feeling blue, I pop in the dvd. Sad that Cary Elwes hasn't done anything since. Yes, I know about SAW, but we discount that.

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