May 18th, 2011

crossed heart

Greatly she failed, but greatly she dared –

Originally published at Cassie Alexander. You can comment here or there.

I woke up this morning and thought, "Time to start on the book again." And then, "Do I really want to do this every day for the rest of my life?" And the answer was, "No." Honestly, right now, it sucks.

Let me back up.

Mostly I'm quiet about the downside of things here because People can read these posts, and I'd prefer that People not find out quite how near to the edge I am on this book. I suspect however that People (my editor and agent, etc) have better things to do with their time, especially with BEA around the corner, hoho, so let me pull the rest of everyone else aside and whine.

Please don't hate me. I know, yay money this week, and yay free time to write, and yay living the dream.

But what I'm doing now is really hard, and I'm not sure that it's making anything better. I'm yanking out thousands of words a day and rewriting them and hoping to hell I'm helping not hurting, while the plot's getting more complicated and the reins are nearing their breaking point. I either have a comet by the tail, or I'm spiralling wildly out of control. I'm not entirely sure which it is, because I don't have much time for introspection at this point, and thinking about it just gives me anxiety attacks, which I cannot afford to have. So I plunge on like Phaeton with the knowledge that doing this the last draft is what got me into this mess, and being not entirely sure that what I'm doing now will get me out of it.

If I had absolute confidence in my ability to nail this, or knew indeed that what I was doing was Better, with a capital-fucking B, I'd feel just fine. But I don't know that. I could be creating the worlds most tangled hottest mess with no solution or salvation in sight. I feel like the story is moving (because it is, at break-neck speed) but I worry that I'm headed for a fall. I'm not sure how much longer I can keep this speed up, and I know that there'll have to be another fucking draft after this one, to smoothen out all the 1st draft bits, and I try not to let fear of that strangle me. I try not to listen to the frightened parts of me because I simply don't have time. It's only early in the morning when they can come out to myself and say, "Ya know, this isn't exactly fun."

I will keep on keeping on. That's not a humblebrag -- I don't have any choice. It's only my extraordinarily nascent career riding on my performance now, *snort*. I can tell myself next book I will plan things better, and make better choices, earlier, and save myself all this fuss and time. But next book isn't this book. I used to feel like I was running a race -- now I feel like I'm being chased. I hate it.

I like the edge as much as anyone else (more maybe) but feeling like this, and having to do this, is balls. No one to blame but myself and my thrillingly self-taught novel-writing skills -- it isn't like procrastination got me here, I was writing all that time before, it was only that I was writing the wrong thing. I just hope hope hope that this time is better, and that this time is right, and that not everything that's first draft will suck in the sober light of two weeks from now when hopefully I'll be done with this draft.

Fuck. Fuck. Fuck...and back to the book.