Thursday, 28 April 2016

The 20 Stages of Writing

1.    You had this great idea for a story about a guy called Sam.
2.    It was perfect in your head.
3.    You tried writing it down.
4.    It didn't look the same on the page as in your head.
5.    So you tweaked it a bit.
6.    And then a bit more.
7.    You tried changing his name from Sam to Ed.
8.    You changed his job too. And his car.  And his cat became a dog.
9.    And re-wrote it a bit.
10.  And then a bit more.
11.  Then you cut the first paragraph.
12.  And changed the ending.
13.  Then put the first paragraph back.
14.  With a new opening sentence.
15.  Then you got confused about it's and its.
16.  So you stared at the page for hours hoping that one or the other would look right.
17.  Then you changed the line.
18.  Then you put back the original name by using a global edit.
19.  Which meant you had to go back and sort out words like 'dressSam' and 'changSam'.
20.  And then you were sick and tired and bored and knew your writing was rubbish, tripe, garbage and you were an untalented fool who couldn't write and was useless and what was the point anyway because no one would ever want to read such a stupid, boring story.

Luckily, the reader only has one stage:

1.  They read.

That's why you're not always the best judge of your own writing.


Philip C James said...

It's as if you're (your?) inside my head... ;-)

Liz Fielding said...

Brilliant, Sarah. Happily I've got the it's/its question nailed - although my fingers sometimes forget which is which. As for the rest, absolutely!

Penny A said...

Which is why, sometimes, it can help to write two short stories in tandem. When one runs into the sand, you might just make it up the slope with the other. Sometimes...
'Lay' and 'lie' are my all time bugbears!! Good post.

Sarah Duncan said...

Recently my fingers seem confused over your and you're. Great suggestion about having 2 stories on the go at the same time Penny