Wednesday, August 25, 2010

slogging through the biorhythms of the page

I did something this morning that a superstitious person like me is usually afraid to do. Not checking my astrological forecast. That would be sheer terror. I got in touch with my 70s inner flower child and looked up an online biorhythm generator.

As I might have suspected, my chart showed a perfect storm of all three rhythmic patterns converging, bottoming out in unison as far away from "have a great day" as you could possibly be. A prisoner in one of Stalin's gulags would have a more cheery biorhythm.

I know.

I'm an idiot for even looking, and now that I have, I am guaranteed to do multiple stupid things to artificially fulfill my web-based prediction for disaster.

But I did it on a whim because I was planning on writing today about the life-rhythms of writers' works in progress (WIPs).

I write organically. I'm not sure what that means, but I probably wouldn't give you salmonella if you cooked me to a lower-than recommended internal temperature.

When I write something, I write straight through -- without skipping parts, outlining, or making plans to come back and fix things at some later date. It means that when I write a book, I'm trying to get the entire thing -- every last word -- out, from title page to the final word.

When you write like this, you're bound to run into parts that are painfully slow, where getting the words out is like pooping a bowling ball. But those slow-rhythm parts are necessary, although frequently not fun, because they are the connective tissue -- the ligaments -- that hold the work together.

Now stop thinking about bowling balls.

On the other hand, some days when you write this way, you'll run into those parts that you've been dying to get out onto the page -- and, to me, the delay at getting to those high-energy bursts makes them even better, more technically well-crafted, once I am finally able to write them.

So I've been rhythmically looking back at my most-recent WIP. I am nearly finished, but in no rush to get there since I know I'll be through with it well before November 9, when The Marbury Lens is released, which was my goal.

Now to go board up the windows and pad the walls...