Monday, January 14, 2013

Writing Traps

I've finally been making progress in Book 4 again. Part of the reason I keep getting delayed is I keep hitting one of my writing traps. This trap makes me go back after I write fair number of words to see how the story is going. In this case, I went back twice because I was dissatisfied with what I had written. The good thing about this approach is I figured out what the book is about. The bad thing is it delays me from getting on with the story.

And it is that second part that makes this a writing trap. Like most traps, mine is a delaying mechanism. Writers create these for themselves from fear of failure or fear of success or for some other reason. They would rather procrastinate than write. The most severe form of a writing trap is the well-known writer's block. But traps come in all shapes and sizes and back in graduate school when I taught freshmen English, I saw all kinds.

I'm sure any writers reading this post have their own traps that they fall into to delay and avoid writing. Some may be harmless in that you can get out of them eventually. Others may be more debilitating. Whatever traps you may have, my advice is to avoid them the way you might avoid writing so that your work can continue uninterrupted. 

That can be hard. I know that I'm not likely to avoid mine because it is part of my process. I need to know that what I've written is solid so that next chapters are on a firm foundation. I do this to avoid massive revision later. But I am always looking for a better way of working. So if I find a way to avoid my trap, I'll probably take it.

Try to do that same for yourself. And above all, keep writing.

No comments: