It wasn’t failure. It was just a success that didn’t come to fruition.

I’ve been awake since 5:00 am. I know, that’s normal for a lot of people. For me, being awake that early usually means I haven’t gone to bed yet.

I decided before I rolled out from under the covers that I was going to be productive today. Three hours, a shower, and a big cup of coffee later, I’ve accomplished… absolutely nothing.


I want to be writing right now. “But you are writing!” you argue. Sure, it looks like I’m writing. What I’m actually doing is thinking while my fingers are on the keyboard– that doesn’t count as writing. Writing is what I do when I have a notebook and a pen and a story idea that my hand can barely keep up with.

I started this story a few months ago. It’s called Finitely Endless (mostly because I love the opposition of that title), and I think it has potential. I’d tell you about it, but chances are someone here will read all the details and make it into a complete, marketable novel before I do. Maybe I should just hire a ghostwriter– I supply the idea, they supply the filler needed to create 300+ pages of literary gold.

I got a page and a half in before I started to doubt myself. I went back to read what I had written before, and I don’t like it.

I really need to find a more forgiving critic to look over my work. Unfortunately, my only choice is my husband, and he’s a little biased.

So now what? I’ve read the few blogs that have already been posted today, and I’m feeling ready to lay down and go back to sleep for a few more hours. I could play some Super Mario Brothers, but I’m guessing my lack-of-sleep attention span will make my game a disaster. It’s a perfect day to go garage saling, my favorite spring activity EVER, but I’m broke. Sigh.

And also? My office smells like a litter box. I’m not sure exactly what my cats have marked– whatever it is, I need to find it and get it the hell out of here. Quickly. I swear, I have the five most possessive cats who ever lived. I’m surprised they don’t pee on me in my sleep to remind each other who I belong to.

Sigh, again.

I should probably work on a more detailed outline for this story. I’ve already decided what I want to accomplish in the first few chapters, but I don’t have a detailed structure to work with. Seems like as good a place to start as any, I suppose.

I’ve decided to start treating writing like a real job– granted, I’m not sure this commitment will last more than a day or two. I want to be at my desk by a specified time every day, and write for at least a few hours. I figure since I’m unemployed, I can at least pretend like I have a real job.

This was a lot more fun when I was little and the careers required less work… just saying.

If I were my boss, I’d tell me not to come back tomorrow.

But beginnings are hard! And so are middles! Endings, on the other hand– I can handle those. I can make endings my bitch.

At least I’ve got a good title…

To my fellow writers– got any tips to help me get started? Any words of encouragement? Is it possible to make my story write itself?


14 Comments on “It wasn’t failure. It was just a success that didn’t come to fruition.”

  1. Good writing is hard. Bad writing is easy. Give yourself permission to write poorly. Write poorly, and write and write, and you’ll come back to that bad writing and find something salvageable you can build upon.

    • It’s so much easier said than done… I think I was just trying to start at the wrong place and that was throwing me off. I’m sure my first draft will still be crap, but if I can at least figure out where the beginning should be I’ll be able to write something.

      • When I’m stuck I like to write the entire story in one sentence. Then I make it into a paragraph. Then I make it into three paragraphs. I keep working until I have a pretty good three page outline.

        • Hmmm… that makes a lot of sense. I should definitely try that. I also need to attempt writing one piece at a time and then stringing it all together when I’m done.

          Eventually, I’ll find a method that works. I hope.

  2. If you find these tips please let me know. I haven’t written a decent story or even tried in over a month. Nada. 😦

    • I’ll pass them on… I haven’t written anything substantial in years. Seems like every time I try, I feel like a get good start and then I decide it’s all crap. Sigh.

      • Ditto. Or I feel really proud of it, read someone else’s stuff and realize, it isn’t so great. But I am still holding hope that is part of the process…

        Bah! I hope.

        • I have this problem where I’ll read something that is more popular/judged better than my stuff and think that it’s crap and that my stuff was sooooooooooo much better. Then I remember I actually have to write often and a lot before I’ll get any recognition for anything.

  3. I’d have to agree with Greatsby. Whether sterling prose or tarnished garble, any words on the page is a victory.

    Have you ever thought about writing the story backwards? I once heard Jonathan Swift liked to start with the last line of a story and work his way back to the beginning. I figure since endings are your bitch, that might be a good place to start.

  4. Morgan says:

    Why don’t you keep a recorder with you at all times and just speak out an idea. Sometimes putting it on paper isn’t the best way to translate it.

    • You know, I’ve owned one of those things for 7 years now and I’ve never used it. Not once. I reallllllllllllllly need to start using it 🙂

      • Morgan says:

        You’re phone is always good too if it has that capability. You carry it with you all the time so why not double up and use it as a recorder. I use it for bad jokes mostly or ridiculous banter when I’m out with my friends.

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