A HERO'S SPARK: the final book in the Wicked Women series!

Friday, May 21, 2010

How can I face a blank page when I'm having a good hair day?

Okay, I'll admit it. I'm stalling. I'm stalling big time. It's the perfect day for writing, it's gray, it's drippy, it's 56 degrees. I've lit candles. Thanks to the faulty wiring in my office building, half the lights are out in my suite, so it's pretty dark and mellow. New Girl is off today and Bossman hasn't called in the past hour.

I should be writing. I should be working on that novel that has a middle and an end but no beginning. hair looks great today! I can't write!

Those of you who know me know that this is a howler, because given how little time I spend with my hair, whether or not it's a good hair day has no bearing in how the rest of my day goes.

But isn't that how we sometimes approach writing? I can't write...I have to pick up the kids in an hour and an hour's not enough time to get anything done.

I can't write, there's something good on TV.

I can't write, I need to check facebook, myspace, email, ebay, youtube, my website, and my cellphone. And by the time I get through all those, I'll have to go back again because someone might have sent me a post, an email, a top five list, a farmville update, a new bejeweled score, or a text.

Believe me my friends, any excuse you can come up with I've already used. Which is why it took me nearly 30 years to write my first novel, six to write my second and why my third is languishing in the corners of my brain.

Admittedly, once you've finished a novel, you want to bask in the glow of writing the words "The End." Hey, once you've sold a book, or held it in your hands, you want to roll around naked on the books. (Okay...I didn't actually do it...but I wanted to.)

Then you start thinking you're done. You had that one story in you. That's it. You've written. You're done.


I thought the story of Shara and Bryan was all I had in me. Turns out, I had Ramona in there, and now I have Izzy and Quinn. Way back in my brain I have a fun couple I call Patrice and The Dark Prince. Farther back there are outlines of stories I haven't even thought of yet. One story, one couple, one hero, one all leads to another one and another one.

But that first blank page is daunting. I have writer friends who have a ritual before they write and if the conditions aren't perfect, they don't do it. I used to pride myself on writing late, late into the night and then functioning well during the day. Well, then the children stopped taking naps. I got a full time job. Bossman frowns on actual napping during the work day.

The wisest words I've ever heard came from a TV show...I can't remember the show, but I remember the quote, "A writer writes...always."

Let me add to that my own observation: No one can read what you haven't written.

And on that note, I'm off to write...

but first I need to check facebook one more time....

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