Writing a novel is a long, difficult journey full of emotions. Some days I’m thrilled with my work; some days it disgusts me. Sometimes I feel a sort of writer’s high; often I am in a slump.
But amidst all the join and pain of writing, I experience this level of … discomfort. Discomfort is probably the best word for it.
I’ve been thinking a little bit about it, and I have a few random thoughts. Do you care if I use bullet points? Thanks.
- My discomfort stems from having something incomplete. I understand that the nature of creation is that something is being created and that likely doesn’t happen in a moment. But I hate having messy drafts. I want to know that if I got hit by a bus today, something could still be done with my manuscript. (Gruesome much, Sommers?)
- I think this discomfort is a huge reason for how driven I am in writing. I go into beast mode as I write and revise. And it’s all because I want to get the manuscript back to a modicum of order.
- Does this say something about my innate desire for order? Maybe. (Though you would not think that if you looked at my bedroom. #tornado)
- I’m thinking about God creating– some think he made the world in a literal six days (and rested on the seventh), some think those days are just metaphors, some think there is no God. But I’m intrigued at the idea of him hammering through all this creative work and then finally getting a chance to rest. Sometimes I feel that way too. I have to get this work done before I can properly rest and recover.
- I understand that I need to learn to live with this discomfort. It’s been the major lesson of my adult life: learning to embrace uncertainty, learning to stay knee-deep in discomfort until I acclimate. I am trying to stretch these lessons to my creative life. I tell myself I only need to revise 1000 words a day … but then I barrel through and do 10k because I can and because it’s uncomfortable and because I want to get things back to good. But how much more will I learn if I stay in the discomfort? I don’t know.
Just some thoughts for you. Would love to hear if these ideas prompted any reaction in you.
Thanks for being lovely.