Today is the first day of spring. Yay! Finally, warmer weather, no snow to shovel, flowers growing, birds singing…
Okay, it’s not all flowers and birds. Or warm weather. It’s still closer to freezing than wamth most days, but we’re getting there.
But spring evokes thoughts of cleaning out the cobwebs that have sprung up in not only our homes, but our bodies and minds as well. It’s time for walks outside, not huddling under the covers.
To that end, I have spent the last few days going through old paper files in my office. Boxes and boxes of them. Files that contain all the submissions I’ve ever made – and their rejections (way too many of those) as well as their acceptances and contracts (more than a few, but less than a lot). It’s rather interesting going through those things. As I look at the old manuscripts I submitted vs. the newer ones that garnered contracts, I can see why they were rejected. I have learned a lot over the years about writing.
But I also lost something in the process, I believe. I now know the rules of writing and (mostly) follow them. I have pared down my points of view, tightened my writing, cleaned up problems. But in doing so, I lost the fun of writing. Yes, my technique is better, but I believe my creativity was better before I knew all the rules.
Which brings me to the story I’m currently working on. I’ve been trying so hard to make this a viable story, that it’s become less than what I think it can be. So I’m going to do some spring cleaning. I’m going to go back to my story with a fresh perspective and forget about the rules and just write. I’m going to create my world. Populate it with interesting characters, and give them a situation to overcome.
I can always go back and edit. As another writer once said, “You can’t edit a blank page.” So I’m going to start filling up those pages and see if I can’t find myself again. Wish me luck. 🙂