Wednesday, 30 January 2013

The Right Write

As we are approach the end of the cruel month of January, I’m looking back and reflecting.  You see this month taught me quite a valuable lesson.

I hit the ground running with BOOK SIX and before I knew it I was almost 20k words in (that’s about a quarter of a book).  Then the unthinkable happened - we fell out.  Yep, me and my work in progress just stopped seeing eye to eye.  It’s only ever happened to me once before, and that was at a much earlier stage in development.

I figured I was tired, that I’d been trying to do too much.  So I put my work aside and hoped for the best.

When I returned to it, I still liked it and so did hubbie but something just didn’t feel right.  When I write, I start each day eager to get back to my characters and ready to plough forward with the plot.  But this wasn’t happening with this book and I found that I was finding any excuse to be doing something else.

But not only was I not writing, I also wasn’t thinking.  That was another reason why I began to suspect something was wrong.  You see, as any writer knows, when you’re mid-book your mind is constantly drifting, seeking out your characters and testing snippets of dialogue or possible sub-plots.  None of this was happening.

So I did what I do best.  I sulked for a while and told myself I’d never write another book again - I’d clearly lost the knack.  All my bragging about not getting writer’s block was coming back to bite me on the bum and it served me right.  My writer’s days were over.

Then a little voice popped into my head and, not only did it tell me that I was writing the wrong book at the wrong time, it also gave me the tiniest seed of a new plot.

I went to bed that night and considered what had happened.  Could I really ditch all the hard work I’d put in and start on another project? - what if that failed too?

But the following morning saw me feeling brighter and more positive than I had all month.  I had to listen to my gut feeling and go with the flow.

And that’s exactly what happened - I began to flow again.  The words were flying out of me with no blockages or hiccups and hubbie was delighted to see me drifting off again with what he calls ‘plot face’.

I’m not looking at the hours I spent on ‘The Other Book Six’ as wasted.  I’m seeing it as a lesson, a very valuable one.  If something’s not working, you know it instinctively and no amount of sitting looking at a screen or notebook will get it moving forward.

I’m now 12k words into my new work and each day starts with that old familiar fizz of excitement.

Not only am I back on track but I’ll be ready for a blip like that if it ever happens again - it’s no crime to cut your losses and I don’t think it makes you less of a writer.  I actually think it makes you more of one.

Now, excuse me but I have a book to write.  The right book.

PS:  There were two winners of the competition I ran last week.  One chose 'Diary of a Mummy Misfit' and one chose 'Stilettos and Stubble'.  Congratulations and thanks to all those who entered.


  1. Glad to hear that the blip has been sorted. :)


  2. i just can't keep up with you. Perhaps you'll come back to the other one. I bet your new one has got a really ruthless. Character inn it!

  3. Jackie495 - AKA, Anonymous!
    Hallelujah!!! Thank goodness you're back on track!! And that we, your friends and readers, can look forward to the 'right' book! June realease would be great Amanda, you know, when we get that 2 days of summer and we can sit out and embrace your work. Besides, it'll save me downloading another author's work! Kidding! Lots of love, Jackie xxx

  4. Crikey, I can't believe what I just asked you as it's not something I've ever asked you before I don't think? How strange? *twilight zone music again*
    Glad you're on track, it's frustrating isn't it when you have to abandon stuff?

  5. Thanks for your comments, guys. Yes, Donna TOO spooky! I'm just happy to report that all is good again :)

  6. So glad you got your mojo back. I think we all have the half finished draft we quarrelled with in a drawer somewhere :-) Give me chance to read Stubble too!