Helen Howell I’ve just finished writing a flash for my blog for friday, and it feels good. Just did a book review and I kinda feel pleased when I see the effort I have put into it up on the screen. When I write I become transported to the world I create. I not just see and hear my characters, I feel what they feel – writing is more than a therapy it’s a magical experience.
How do I feel when I write?
My other creative endeavour is music. I play drums. I equate writing and drumming/music, two artistic endeavours, as sharing the same process. There is the “rehearsal” phase, developing craft and technique (the drafting and editing phases), and there is the “performance” phase (the finished product).
The rehearsal phase is often a dog’s breakfast, splattered from one end of the kitchen to the other. Whatever you put your hand to is smeared rancid custard. It’s gruelling, tiresome, frustrating, painful and makes you want to take out your eyeballs with a crayon.
But there are times in the practice room when rudimental exercises become meditative. You find a flow, a rhythm, a beat.
Then there are moments when playing music is sublime. Those moments during a live performance when every part connects seamlessly from drums to guitar to bass to vocals to keys. You carefully execute the parts you hear in your head, translated into your hands.
However, to make roses bloom, (to mix my metaphors even further) you have to get your hands filthy dirty and smelling of manure.
How do I feel when I write? I feel a spectrum of emotions from giddy excitement of a new idea to the joy of the first few drafts. Then comes the hard work of shaping and refining. It can suck the life out of you and the story. Think of fingernails dragged down a chalkboard.
There is a certain smugness and self satisfaction when a story is as perfect as you can make it.
And it feels good.
How do you feel when you write?