What a bore. A craft discussion.
Good news! For those who saw yesterday’s Facebook post on how truly boring I am, or felt myself to be, I am at least 20% less boring today than yesterday! (I made that number up. I could be only 5% less boring but I’m assuming in my favor.) However, lest you think I’m just fishing (phishing?) for compliments, I assure you I am not too bothered by being such a bore.
My opposing state is frenzied mania, so it’s actually a nice change of pace.
I also realized *why* I’m so dull these days. I’ve become obsessed with my current work-in-progress.
I’m working on the second draft, entering the third and final act, and I’ve cut 20,000 words and rewritten every remaining one. This draft has been about focusing on showing vs. telling (something I get lazy about in my first draft), creating an edge-of-the-seat feeling in the reader, and giving my main protag more agency.
Now I’m drilling deeper and trying to make subtext do more of the work, too. Sometimes it looks and feels like I’m just rearranging words but I tell myself I’m angling for precision. See? Obsessive.
So boredom has its gifts, and the bigger worry now is that I’m no longer trusting myself enough with the work. I have to tell myself that I *chose* this story, I’ve spent months on it, I’ve written a draft and a half, I can do this. But how to carve it into its ideal shape without cutting too close to the bone? How to say what I mean with robust precision? How to balancing between knowing that it’s not quite there and knowing exactly what needs to change and why vs. trusting that I *can* do this?
The last week has shown me that when I’m not being too precious about it, when I’m slashing-and-burning and moving fast, deleting without worry over the disappearing words — that’s when I’m at my best. Yet to move that fluidly, to call upon nine books and eighteen years of experience, to be able to drill down deeply enough to see what this story really wants to be, I need to focus. And that requires being boring.
So it’s okay. Last night I had a taco.