Pushing through

So the problem with creativity is that it doesn’t work on a schedule. Certainly not any sort of schedule a normal human being should be keeping, anyway. For example, my creative impulses hit around 10pm. Not when it’s light out. Not even in those twilight hours of half darkness. If I’m lucky, I might get the juices flowing between 9 and 9:30pm. But before that, pretty much anything I write is drivel, and unusable. This week I have been exceptionally creative, logging in total over 11.5K words in the course of a few nights. This translates into around 36 Word document pages, which would be almost 100 book pages. And remember, I don’t start until after 10pm.

Now you can imagine that this has put a bit of a strain on my day job. My sleep self has been playing tricks on me, turning off or resetting my primary alarm. Thank goodness for the backup! Still, I have walked into work later than planned, which means staying later than planned, which means paperwork and a quiet(ish) building, which is not always helpful when tired.

As always, the self-doubt plagues. I was doing some research tonight, and on a whim I looked up the typical length for a YA novel. Most places are saying 50K-65K or 75K tops. Mine is already 81.5K, and I have a little ways to go. What does that mean for my chances of scoring an agent? Hopefully nothing. The sites were also saying that in the end, it’s the content that matters. And right now, longer YA is hot. Of course, a couple years down the road, who knows? And that’s the most optimistic outlook for when my book might end up being published, IF I get an agent this year and IF it is sold to a publisher. And those are huge IFs. Those are dreaming IFs.

So as I was reading this, and thinking about other blogs I read about what not to write and what not to do and the difficulty of breaking into the publishing industry in any real way, I came across the website of author Alyson Noel. Now, I actually have never heard of her, but I was reading her advice on writing/publishing, and it’s actually really awesome. This was my favorite part:

What is “I-suck-itis” and how do I make sure I don’t get infected?

I-suck-itis is that feeling you get when you’re happily engrossed in your writing, everything’s going great, and then, smack out of nowhere, that horrible, annoying, little voice in your head pipes in with all sorts of judging, and snarking, and horrible little comments—determined to convince you that you’ll never be as good as so and so

When that happens, the only cure is to tell that little voice to mind it’s own business, thankyouverymuch. That you are just trying to get the first draft written and have every intention to go back and revise later. Because the truth is, writing is all about re-writing, and to paraphrase Nora Roberts: You can’t fix a blank page! 

 Why do I love this? Because it’s normal. It’s completely NORMAL to have days when you decide you suck. It’s completely NORMAL to compare yourself to others. I read it time and again, and I just thought this was a fabulous way of explaining it, and then swatting it away. If you’re interested in her other advice, check out the page on her website here

So, in the end, I really am excited with where my book is heading. At this point, I need to finish, and worry about revisions later. I don’t want to think about slashing my baby to cut the word count back, but I refuse to worry about it now. For now, Eden and Kalon have an adventure to finish. The sooner the better, so I can start getting some sleep!

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