WFMAD Day 13 – Alone Together

Such a strange thing writing is, don’t you think?

Visions of other people and other worlds swim in your head until you have no choice but to write them down. Then you have the burning need to have someone else read what you’ve written, so you embark on the rocky path to publication.

The writing life is at once filled with companionship – all those characters in your head – and often quite lonely, because you are essentially alone for nearly all of your working hours. (I’m talking about the creating part, not things like book tour.)

For many people, this is lonely. Not for me.

I love the solitude, but even for people like me, its good to make time to be in the company of other writers. Creativity expands exponentially when creative people hang out with each other.

If you haven’t joined networks or support groups for writers like SCBWI, do it today. Look for writing conferences or retreats or workshops in your area. Find yourself some writing buddies who share your commitment to your dream and make time to work together.

Not just manuscript critiquing or meeting for coffee so you can trade news about which editor has moved where. Set up time with your writing friends so you can write together.

It helps to come up with a couple of guidelines before you start; how much talking is allowed, how long will the writing go on, will you share what you’ve written after the quiet time or just go straight to the gossip and pastry portion of your get-together.

Who can you write with this weekend?

Ready….

“WRITE. FINISH THINGS. KEEP WRITING.” Neil Gaiman’s advice for aspiring writers.

Set…. After you make this weekend’s writing date, find a quiet spot and make the world go away.

Today’s prompt: Your character finds a box hidden at the back of her closet. Inside it are things from her childhood that someone saved for her. What is in the box? (Hint – focus on the way things smell.) OR If you found a box of items from your childhood, what would it contain?

Scribble… Scribble… Scribble!!!

 

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5 Comments

  1. Posted August 13, 2010 at 8:34 am | Permalink

    Thank you for this exercise. It brought up many childhood memories, which were painful, but I need to tap into these for my YA novel.
    After my Thirty Minutes with Laurie ended, I reminded myself to . . .
    Write what I am compelled to write.
    Write what hurts the most from deep in my gut.
    Write what I have been avoiding to write.
    Write what scares me.
    Write. It. Now.
    This is the story that I need to tell.
    And I am working up the courage, day by day, to do this.

  2. Posted August 13, 2010 at 9:47 am | Permalink

    Thanks a lot! I just did the exercise and it gave me an idea that’s perfect for my book. I’ve been struggling with that part of it for some time and this might be just what it needs!

  3. Lauren :)
    Posted August 13, 2010 at 2:54 pm | Permalink

    Thankfully one of my closest friends and I are working on a story together, and whenever we get together and write, it usually ends up lasting for hours with frequent stops to bounce ideas off of each other. I am thankful that she and I can work so well together, and even if we disagree on what our characters should do, we always end up with a new solution in the end.

    Today was my best day of writing. Kind of ironic, considering it is Friday the 13th. I learned to ignore time. I didn’t feel “lonely” exactly writing; the characters were screaming at me telling me what to say next. I stopped a few times today to work on another project not involved with writing. However one time I did stop to look up a scene in a movie that reminded me of my narrator’s battle in the scene I was writing. I must bookmark the video to show my friend the image I tried to portray in reader’s minds when they are reading the scene I just wrote.

    Wow, I commented a lot today. I guess I just had a lot to say. :D

  4. Alison Wuthrich
    Posted August 14, 2010 at 12:43 am | Permalink

    So here’s the deal: I worked for two days on the “write what you’re afraid of” and have so completely given myself the heebie jeebies that I’m considering a new line of work! I think this shouldn’t be this hard. Ya’all seem overflowing with goodness and tea and crumpets and poetry and I look up from this abysmal vortex of bitter suckitude and think I must surely be missing the point. Kinda wishing I had TV today!

    Ah, well…I’m still writing away–and have decided to lay aside that particular piece for a few years. When I see that file lurking on my desktop, I back carefully away. If I move slowly and quietly, it won’t come after me and eat me alive. Scary that I could become so clinical and sterile about what scares me that I fooled myself into believing that I have arrived at this season of my life, enlightened, bold, and powerful. Super scary what truths my writing revealed to me about myself.

    Do you think such deeply intimate emotions are universal? Or am I in a very exclusive geek/freak club–a club of one? I think I need to go dig out the water colors and paint some dewey rainbows and dandelions and butterflies and sing some rollicking camp songs…

    …I love the mountains, I love the rolling hills….

  5. Posted August 16, 2010 at 4:14 pm | Permalink

    Indeed creativity does expand the mind when one is among like minds.
    I actually have a box of treasures from childhood. I not quite sure what I was suppose to do with the list of stuff in the box or why I kept some of the stuff. But I have a list now.

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