Approach With Caution…

You’re wondering where I am. I can hear you think it like a shout off a mountaintop. 🙂

This image below about sums it up.

writer-at-work

In my world, ‘lunch’ can be replaced by coffee. Because, you know, coffee has replaced blood in my veins.

While I write, people often ask me how I feel, where I get the ideas from, and comment on my enthusiasm / dedication to writing. Like “Wow, Yolandie, how do you do it?” Let me fill you in here. I’m insane. And I bet a lot of other writers are insane too.

But I’m going to try and explain how I think and feel while I write in more detail than putting it down to insanity.

I’m a workaholic. An obsessive, crazy and often strange workaholic. Was I such a hard worker back in the day when I had an office job? Nooooo! But when I get passionate about something, I can hurl myself at the task and do nothing else. In fact, it gets to the point where I’ll go to sleep in the midnight hours and get up early again to write. If you know me, you’ll know how I love sleep. 😀 I even feel guilty when I watch TV or relax.

At the moment, I’m in the middle of a completely unplanned rewrite. I was planning to salvage a lot of the original draft into the new one and just tweak some chapters while I wrote some new ones. Not ALL, no no no. Just SOME. Of course, I’m fourteen chapters in and I’ve only re-used a single one from the original draft. That’s all fine and dandy, and the proofreaders seem to like the new stuff, but rewriting makes me even more insane than I am at any other given point in time.

Why? Because second-guessing and overthinking enter the mix. Yay. Let’s have a play date. And those two little precious angels lead to this:

snoopy-peanuts-cartoon-even-typwriter-hates-stories

So own-worst-enemy and not-good-enough are invited to play too. And let’s not forget I-suck-at-life, she’s the life of the proverbial party.

It’s a tumbleweed of emotions.

Just last night I almost had a breakdown over a ‘major plot hole’ that turned out to be a matter of perspective. It isn’t a plot hole at all and it could be reasoned away in a blindingly obvious way. I could have spent the time I used freaking out better by staring at the sun.

Whole chapters have been dumped in moments when I’m not certain about what the heck I’m doing (which is most of the time). Then, tomorrow when I feel a little better, the entire dumped chapter is cut and pasted back into the manuscript from my ‘dump’ file. Then, in two days time, I don’t like it anymore and change half of it from dramatic and forceful to gentle and sweet. And then? Then I change it back again.

You would think that I know the storyline. I mean, I’ve written this book once before. I’ve spent a lot of time working out complicated histories and plot lines and character backgrounds. So I know what’s supposed to happen, right? Yeah. When the moment comes and I’m in front of the computer – in the zone – typing my heart out, and Florence Welsh starts to belt out some kind of sweet, melodic torture, the fates have a tumble and all my planning explodes. In. My. Face.

I’ve told you before that I’m driven by emotions above all else.

Sometimes, for me at least, stuff just makes clearer sense in another kind of context. So my planning has to be fluid. It has to be able to mould to what I’m bound to discover about my world’s history, characters’ personalities and plot lines during my writing journey. Is this frustrating? Of course it is. But in the moment when I planned something, my emotional state would have had an effect too, which means that logic might only slap me silly later.

In summary.

What I feel while I write is obsessive.
It’s insecure.
Erratic even.
Exhausted.
Excited.
A little evil.
Above all, EMOTIONAL. I feel them all – all the friggen emotions.

As for where ideas come from, have I mentioned my body is running on caffeine?

Have a good one, folks. I’m going to write now.

Yolandie

 

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