The blue-white light district

“The first draft of anything is shit.” Ernest Hemingway

I shouldn’t be here. It’s 6:30 in the morning and I have a cup of coffee and the last piece of sweet potato pie and I shouldn’t be here. I should be making progress.

Here’s the thing, I’m seriously messed in the head when it comes to writing for anything but my blog. It’s something that I noticed last year, last July as a matter of fact. There was a nonfiction contest running on She Writes and all I had to do was write 2,000 words of a work in progress. I had the entire month to write 2,000 words and I didn’t do it. I started again and again and again. Then I got depressed and didn’t write for a month and moped. This is the part I don’t tell you about.

This is the part where I put on my brave face and say, “Write it out, Jackass.” This is where I tell everyone to write like your hands are on fire and get past it because that works and you need to scare yourself to get there, to the place on the page where you feel yourself glow like blue-white flame.

It’s true, I swear to you it’s true.

But since then I’ve had the damnedest time writing outside the safety of the blog. Call for submissions–yeah, I can do that. I have a hundred ideas for that story. I can be funny. I have a plot line and a character and a twist and…I’m still not writing.

My back has been aching for almost a week, right here on the left side, down low. I hold my posture and keep my feet on the floor. I listen to Bob Dylan sing Desolation Row and I get a really great idea for using Fremont Street.

This character would love Fremont Street part time. This character would love my spazticity. This character should just write the story her own self and leave me out of it. And give me a massage. And take care of the kids.

I don’t believe in writer’s block. I just need a really good plumber.


About E. Victoria Flynn

E. Victoria Flynn is a mother and a writer living in Southern Wisconsin. Published in a variety of venues, Victoria is currently writing the first in a series of three fantasy novels based on Cornish folklore. When not taking part in a shrieking dance party or engrossed in her own little fictions, Victoria is keen on art, the natural world and people unafraid to explore their own brilliance.
This entry was posted in Shitty first drafts, Why write, writing and tagged , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink.

12 Responses to The blue-white light district

  1. kario says:

    There is something so seductive about blogging, isn’t there? Writing a finite length, knowing that it will be instantly read and commented upon, and once it’s done you can move on. Or come back and see what people thought. I struggle with writing beyond my blog as well and have to remind myself that when my character compels me to tell his/her story, I will write like I’m on fire. Until then, I have to let her sit and brew.

  2. eVF! To create some cross insemination I’m going to respond on G+ šŸ™‚ Fremont East is the place, Sweet Potato Pie and blogging the device!

  3. Kent says:

    Love this piece. Bob Dylan’s Desolation row is such a depressing set of words in an upbeat sort of way, I can almost see where you are coming from. Cute, Quirky and Crazy ideas seem to just pour from my head too, but to put them on paper? Good luck

    • pennyjars says:

      Kent, thanks for stopping and reading and commenting. I checked out your blog, now I get where you’re coming from with the crazy ideas šŸ˜‰ Love the picture of Tim the Enchanter at the top!

  4. Beth Hoffman says:

    I don’t believe in writer’s block either. But I do believe there’s a lot to be said for walking away from the computer now and then so ideas can simmer for while.

  5. Christi Craig says:

    I love, love the beginning and the end of this post. And, yeah, I know about the middle. I have three projects I want to work on, big and little, and I can find lots more time to fiddle around with a blog post than I can those projects. I did spend some time with pen and paper today, which helped.

    “Write like your hands are on fire.” Lets do.

  6. pennyjars says:

    My handwriting was bad, now it’s barely legible. I had no idea. I’m afraid I’m going to lose the skill of writing on paper all together unless I make use of all those empty books I have laying around.

    Yes, let us write and let us be unconcerned.

  7. Obviously, it’s easier for me to write a blog post than a story or novel. I spend too much time doing that … not that you can tell by my posts. I play too much.

    Handwriting … ouch. Mine never was very pretty and after I broke my writing hand it got worse. I keep telling myself I’ll write something that way because I’ll be forced to slow down, but I haven’t yet. Boy, if they could bottle self-discipline, I’d ask for it for my birthday.

    Concerning the Kindle in the bath: I’ve heard of people putting them in zip-lock bags. I’m not sure I’d trust that, if it fell in the water though, and knowing me …

  8. pennyjars says:

    Now that’s something, reading through a zip-lock. It reminds me of plastic slip covers and pocket rain hats, both of which are making me very happy to think about right now.

    I’ll take out a subscription to Eau de Self-Discipline with a booster shot of confidence and expediency. That ought to do us.

    Keep up with the blog posts, Linda. You say a lot of things I didn’t realize I was thinking.

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