Sunday, August 06, 2006

There is nothing more infuriating than creating a post and then losing it, which is what happened yesterday. All because I decided to italicise a word. Lo and behold, the whole post disappeared and would not come back. At least on your computer you have a chance at retrieval sometimes. So now I have to work on the memory cells and try to retrieve at least some of yesterday's post from my brain. Hmmm.
The topic initially was a short chapter book I am trying to rewrite, specifically because I sent it off in haste to a publisher, without giving it time to sit and time for me to get my critical faculties in order. The manuscript came winging back (as they do) and I realised that yet again, the urge to get it out there had taken over my common sense.
It's a common problem, I think. We get caught up in the rush of having not only written something but finished it. And we are so pleased and excited and are so sure it's wonderful, just the way we envisioned it ... so we pop it in the envelope (or attach it to the email) and away it goes.
And there it is, zinging right back again. With comments such as "the story felt a bit flat" and "the characters weren't different and developed enough". Luckily I have a good writer friend who had a look at it and made some helpful suggestions. The next step was to sit down and tackle it. That's when the little voice starts - "maybe the story isn't any good anyway" and "maybe your writing skill isn't going to be up to fixing it". I had just read an article about the golfer, Brett Ogilvie, and he talked about those voices on the golf course, and how you have to replace them with positive voices. Ignoring the negatives doesn't work well enough. So I put a positive voice in place - "just look at the story, work out some ideas on how to improve it, and leave the writing part for now - use some thinking power!"
Yes, I did just that. The rewriting lies ahead, but at least I know where to start. One step at a time.
I finished "The New Policeman" and decided I liked it. I didn't really "get" the music bits but then I'm not a musician and can't read the music so it was wasted on me! I have got one of the Switchers books from the library and am about to read it with great interest. As I'm doing the masterclass in 3 weeks with Kate Thompson, I had better read some of her other books.

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