The process of getting started.
Writing a book that takes place on another planet causes quite a commute for me. Every day I get up, open the curtains, make the bed and then lie back down in that bed and stare off into space. There are a million different tiny invisible obstacles preventing me from traveling back to the world of my story. I have to work like hell to get back to a city that does not really exist except in the elusive stillness of my imagination. When I finally do arrive into the streaming flow of comprehension of this far away place, I only have maybe two or three hours there before I’m tossed back to Earth. Dinner time. And the next day it starts all over again.
It can feel like that guy who had to roll a boulder up a hill forever… But this is what I try to keep in mind- This day does not need to be amazing. Or rather… what will be amazing about this day will not be the same thing as yesterday. Today is new and different. It has never happened before and it will never happen again in this way.
After days of fighting my brain, trying to get it to release the stronghold of tension- the expectations of performance and the chastising for who I’ve not yet become- who I should already be- I was able to exhaust the fight and like life. I woke relaxed from a dream that was engaging but not frightening. I woke with a mist of imagination warm like body heat all around me and every moment that went by blew that magical mist away. Everything and everyone causes this magical mist to evaporate. If I want to keep it I must insist. I must find solitude. But if I am rude to the ones I love my heart aches all day long. I can not work with my broken heart. To engage the conflict needed in the story- to really go in and make it really bad- I must have peace between him and me.
The writing machine throttles to a stop when I develop expectations. And when that happens my task is to remove the need to be amazing. Relax. In this world, the ability to relax is amazing.
So – where do I begin today? Continue the outline. Make a list of questions- things you don’t know.
How do I focus? Where do I begin. Open the document. You can begin anywhere and the focus will occur. So it is a matter of choosing where. What are the options?
Open the document. Place your eyes on what is written there. Think no more about thinking about it. Or where to start. Just open the document and let your eyes fall on what is written there.
How can I capture the vivid scenes in my head? So many happening at once.
Open the outline and read until you find a place you wish to interject. Then talk to yourself.
All is well. All is well. All is well.