Wednesday, September 28, 2016

Writerly Wednesday: Scribbling at Recess

I'm back in the swing of things, and my novel-writing class started last week. You know what that means, right? It means I paid for the class, and so come hell or high water, I'm going to write. 

Of course, I'm out of practice. So, what happens is that I sit there with my giant Google document open, and every single word I type physically pains me.  

I say to myself, "Oh quit complaining. Just write for three minutes. "

Then, I look up at the right corner of my screen where the clock is, and it's, like, shocking that no minutes have gone by. I can basically write only 100 words at a time. I took my little notebook out with me for recess duty and made myself scratch out another hundred because the daily total has to start inching back up, lest I have nothing to share with my class and teacher.

One thing that makes me feel okay about this distressing state of affairs is that I saw Anna Quindlen speak last week. I fell in love with her when I read One True Thing when I was in college. 

Have you read that? 

It's heartbreaking and stunning. 

And then, shortly after I read that novel, and much to my delight, Anna Quindlen became the back-page columnist in Newsweek magazine. Her columns were delivered to my home in my early years of teaching.  The long and the short of it is, Anna Quindlen is a writer with range whom I deeply admire.  

And guess what she said about writing last week when I saw her at Pen Pals lecture series?

She said that writing is excruciating for her. Every sentence is a struggle. At the end of every writing day, she quits in the middle of a sentence because she can't bear to start a new chapter or a new paragraph in the morning. 

But, she can always finish a sentence.  Okay, Anna. I'm with you. I'm going to finish a sentence or two or three. Let's do this.

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

I admire your persistence! Hang in there, you have talent! I am really looking forward to reading more! Love, mom