Saturday, November 18, 2006

Long Time No See

Hey, Everybody. I'm not dead or even dying slowly due to a painful condition that makes me allergic to keyboards or cyberspace.

Nope. I'm writing like crazy, keeping pace to finish 50,000 words of the novel by Nov. 30. Hard to believe, but true.

Stopped posting the stories because I began to feel the pressure of making them readable beyond what allowed me to take risks and delve into my imagination, tossing out crap to find the stuff worth keeping. I've found that if I write enough crap, there'll be some surprising treasures buried within in. Trouble was, my ego has trouble letting me post crap (as least what I recognize as crap), so I found myself writing too close to my vest, with too little risk.

You guys are great--have been great. This is no problem but my own, and deciding not to post the snippets let me give myself permission to wildly overwrite, leave cliches in to be mined later, and so on. Most of all, it turned me loose to take risks.

I've been rereading Anne LaMott's Bird by Bird as I do every few months. Here's a graph that gets me every time.

You simply keep putting down one damn word after the other, as you hear them, as they come to you. You can make the work a chore, or you can have a tood time. You can do it the way you used to clear the dinner dishes when you were thirteen, or you can do it as a Japanese person would perform a tea ceremony, with a level of concentration and care in which you can lose yourself, and so in which you can find yourself.

In this crazy NaNoWriMo thing I've undertaken, I've discovered surprising things about myself and found myself in my own heart. All of you who read and comment and support me have midwifed these things into being, and I thank you. So Much.

I'll probably post a few passages from time to time, and I'll try to find time to post normal stuff, too. My connection to all of you is SO important to me. I've missed you.

Much more soon.
j

10 comments:

tinker said...

You've been so brave! I haven't even posted an excerpt yet, for the reasons you outlined here. If I'm going to make the deadline, I've got to give myself the latitude to just write whatever's coming that day - the editing can come later, AFTER I've reached my goal.

If we keep on laying those words down one at a time, and we'll have 50,000 before we know it. Write on!

tinker said...

As the previous comment demonstrates - I'm not even editing my comments right now, lol! OK, back to streaming my consciousness some more.

holly said...

missed you too, Jerri! had a feeling when you got so quiet after those fantastic posts that you had gotten so swept in the current of your story that you didn't have time to pop-up on the blog. Great for you! Yea, you keep it going, girl!
love to you.

Amber said...

You know what? When I saw that you were posting your stuff, I thought about that part of Bird By Bird, and how I wouldn't be able to post what I worte, because I would be too hard on myself. I thought your stuff was good, but I think it is good to just write it and not over think it, for this thing. When you have it all worked out, you can share with us. Also I worried about someone swiping your words! You never know...
Anyway, keep it up!

ox :)

Remiman said...

Jerri,
I'm so proud of you!
rel

Go Mama said...

Glad to hear you're still at it....go Jerri, go!

Jenny Rough said...

I'd been wonderin' where you've been. GREAT job with all the writing. Keep going!

Ziji Wangmo said...

Hey there. I'm so impressed by your ability to participate in this novel writing process - I love your work. You have really shown me that anything is possible if you put your mind to it. Thanks.

Anonymous said...

Hi, it's my first visit to your site, so excited to be here! Your work is great, word by word and bird by bird. love women writers(most of them), love Annne Lamott, love midwifing, love period.

Carrie Wilson Link said...

Love that love period is spreading! Love that you're doing whatever you NEED to do. Love that you feel the support of fellow bloggers, but are not chained down by us! Love that you are reaching your goal!