So for the past couple of weeks I have really been putting off any further writing on my current WIP. I rode all the way home yesterday with the radio off asking myself why. Outline? Check. Scenes summarized? Check Check Check Check and Check. I’m ready to go with my fingers on the keys. Up until this morning I really didn’t get why I felt like there was a huge wall between me and my writing.
Then as I was walking around getting my classroom ready this morning I remembered a blog post I had read months ago by someone I regrettably don’t remember where she was talking about having fear of writing tough scenes. I won’t go into detail about the specific tough scenes she was referring to because it might allude to the type of scenes I’m writing and I don’t want to give anything away even though only like five people will read this book in the near future, HOWEVER, they were similar to what I’m about to write. The truth is the scenes I have coming up are uncomfortable. I don’t like them or what happens in them. Honestly I’d like to shove them in the trash can, light a match then spread the ashes in various dumpsters around town. It sounds so ridiculous because these are pretend people in a pretend world with pretend feelings, but when you are a writer your characters kind of become an extension of who you are. In many cases they are metaphors or symbols of your own emotions, challenges, and struggles. Like Ernest Hemingway said in The Old Man and the Sea,
“I tried to make a real old man, a real boy, a real sea and a real fish and real sharks. But if I made them good and true enough they would mean many things.”
You are their creator and explore every area of their pretend little lives. You know every decision they would make, every thought they would have, every word they would say in a thousand scenarios. And sometimes you know something has to happen to them, but you really don’t want it to. But you write it anyway because if you deprived your characters from difficulty, you wouldn’t have a story. Well you might, but it would be so far beyond people’s capability to connect with it that it wouldn’t be worth telling. IMO, anyway.
So I’ve just got to face the fear and punch it in the face. I’m about to bring out the “Depressing songs of all time” playlist. Suggestions?