I have a serious bout of Resistance. Do you know what I am talking about? Here are the symptoms:
- I want to work on my novel-in-progress, but I don’t think I can do through the steps of opening up the Word Document.
- Instead, I look at everything but the novel-in-progress. Publisher’s Lunch surely will have some new book that gets me excited enough to start writing. Oh wait–I’ll just order that new book. Then I’ll drift over to my Facebook Page and add some asinine comment. Oh, but there’s email to respond to! Does that count towards my word count? Let’s summarize this symptom: distration that appears like work.
- Self-doubt. “I can’t do this. It’s hard. I don’t wanna…hey, maybe I’ll pet the dog for awhile.” That’s self-doubt and distraction. Combo platter.
- No one will care about my book. I’ll never get an agent. Even if I do, I’ll be that rare case in which the agent can never sell it to a publisher. Years will go by with an unsold manuscript. “Oh wait! Maybe it’s a bestseller! I think it is. Oh God…the pressure!” Symptom: Grandiosity meets self-doubt.
- Writing is a big ol waste of time. Why bother with something so self-involved, so cerebral, so isolated when I should be doing something for the greater good of humankind, saving wildlife, or cleaning my house. Or caring for my children. Symptom: Get off your writing butt and save the world.
- Maybe I should just read. Yeah, that’s it. If I read what I want to write, my head will be filled with all sorts of great writing, good metaphors, active verbs. Symptom: Reading will cure it all.
I could go on and on about why I have Resistance. But the fact of the matter is: I have to write. There is a tiny little voice that whispers in my ear, “What about us? The charcters you created…we’re just hanging out in limbo-land.” They nag at me. They want me to do something with them. I can’t simply turn them off and go my merry way saving the whales or rubbing my basset’s long silky ears. Because when I do, I hear the voices of my charcters, “We need to save the babies…” I hear my critique partner, “This needs clarifying and expansion.” I hear myself, “This is interesting…you need to finish this.”
Okay, okay…I will roll up my sleeves and get to work.
Write on, Wednesday!