"Writing is utter solitude, the descent into the cold abyss of oneself."
— Franz Kafka
— Franz Kafka
I’m trying to decide the best way to proceed. The revisions continue, I fought through a particularly rough part (honesty about others and myself can sometimes be painful). It is slow going, I get on a roll and do well for a couple of days then get in the dumps and can’t seem to write a single word.
I’m not complaining though. I’m trying to take the bull by the horns, as it were, and figure out how to make myself the most productive I can be. Well at least in terms of my writing. Productivity everywhere else in my life is just too big a job to tackle right now.
When I was first working on the first draft, I was in a writer’s workshop. They were six-week workshops but I went to the same workshop facilitator about three or four times in a row, then I also worked with her privately. It kept me writing. Having that looming deadline within which I had to produce something to read at the following week’s workshop kept me going. Guilt can be a powerful motivator. Again, I as usual want to be the pleaser, didn’t want to be the “one” who showed up unprepared or empty-handed. So I wrote, and revised and wrote some more. It got me a completed first draft.
I didn’t always like the comments about my writing. Other days I didn’t like that there were hardly any comments at all. (Yes, I know, I’m kinda hard to please.) I, in fact, didn’t always “like” all the other members of the workshop. Well I didn’t necessarily know them that well; I just didn’t have much in common with them and couldn’t get into whatever it was they were writing. But, I put forward my best effort to be helpful, constructive, and supportive, whether I liked their writing or not. They may not have “liked” me either, but they were kind, helpful, and respectful of my work.
I haven’t been to a workshop in several months. The facilitator has been busy trying to do silly things, like make a living. (Huh, who would have thought?)
My friend E. Victoria Flynn over at Penny Jars (can I call you that Victoria? I mean we really only know each other virtually), recently wrote about getting together with a couple other women writers to talk about writing, about life about whatever. I was soooo jealous.
Side note: If you get a chance you really shouldn't miss the opportunity to meet EVF and her blog Penny Jars. She is an amazing woman, a great poet and writer and a very cool mom to adorable kids -- in fact she's the kind of mom most kids probably wish they had.
It made me think; maybe I need to find a writing partner. Someone I could bounce ideas off or who will offer an opinion or suggestions. Maybe someone who will just offer a friendly ear, or we can chat over coffee. Maybe someone who will hold me accountable to help keep me writing. Or even someone I could write with, work together on a project?
I have friends (okay one friend) who I turn to often for advice, for help, for support (thank you MendiD). But I am starting to think maybe I need to try and find someone locally; someone that I can meet with in a coffee shop, in person, who will give me “that look” if I get flakey and don’t write or am not honest in what I write. Someone I might see face to face if I am not dependable, someone I couldn’t avoid. Scary thought. It means, at least in the beginning, putting myself out there to a stranger and risking rejection.
Sometimes wish I could just get on a plane, fly to Arizona where I know there is a friendly face, or even to Wisconsin and visit in person that virtual friend for some good coffee and writing support.
I’m kind of tired of the solitariness of writing and feel the need for the warmth of some company.