Although some writing has flowed through my dancing fingers lately, I’ve been aware that indolence has crept up upon me and my daily discipline is suffering.
So it was with some delight that I finally grappled with three fulsome critiques of my latest novel effort, and discovered that there’s really rather a lot of work ahead if I’m to keep up with my little writing group. The effort I thought I’d put to bed is, in fact, very much awake and needing attention.
Whole sections of the novel need to be discarded (in writing groups, the technical term is ‘murder your darlings’). Other sections need to be persuaded to sing, to reach out and grasp the reader’s emotional centre. Thanks to a couple of early readers, I believe in the novel, and in its emotional resonance. Now I just have to make it play to the sensitivities of my critical peers.
In earlier times, I might have been so discouraged that I would abandon the project. Perhaps I’m maturing, or maybe I’m just bored, but with this new challenge, now that I’ve had enough of a break to feel distanced from the original creativity, I’m ready to jump back into serious writing mode.
The anticipated discipline is enough to wipe out the indolence, I think, and to get me focusing again. Somehow, the very concept of the work ahead feels energising, exciting. I haven’t done the actual word count yet, but by the time I’ve finished cutting things out, there’s likely to be a new hole of something like thirty thousand words. More creativity ahead then!
Not that my heart swells with joy, but that it’s suffused with anticipation of a return venture into ‘flow.’ That state of mind at the intersection of anomie and anxiety. Thank you, MihalyiCziskszentmihalyi!
The act of creativity provides its own joy, and I can’t wait to dive in again.