Process, Anyone?

Posted By on May 5, 2011

I was once a clean writer. I mean, I finished the book with none of the tearing apart you hear so much about. I edited as I went, usually editing the previous day’s output before I started new words. After I finished the book, I’d do a read-through to find anything like changing eye colors, the movement of a house from one town to another, the dreaded changing of the names! And then, off went the ms. to my editor.

That’s not my process any more. I write crap. Not on purpose. I’ve tried to wrest my old process from the annals of the past. But it doesn’t matter how careful I am. In fact, I think “careful” makes it worse. As I finish each chapter, I have to start back at their beginnings. And I rarely salvage anything except character names when I finish them. (And that can be iffy. See para above.) I don’t know how I feel about my process change. The old way definitely felt easier, but this way feels better.

I think I’m getting to the heart of the matters between my hero and heroine because I certainly remind myself that character conflict is the key to a tension-filled romance. I don’t just let myself off the hook with a “yes, remember to showcase that flaw.” I’m looking for ways to up the ante between these two–to find the nuances that take a reader inside the characters’ hearts. This extra work is growth.

One more thing. I have a southern woman’s tendency to denigrate myself. You know, we might be vain, but mostly, we’ll be the only ones to know. Putting ourselves down–cleverly–is a form of social dance.

I’m not doing that any more. Writing is difficult, but oh-so-worth the work. I’m proud of the work. I’m not going to even tease about my own failings. They come home to roost enthusiastically enough. I don’t need to summon them with a trail of self-doubt.

So, welcome! Sit down–no, wait–let me turn over my new leaf for you!

And now–I need to jump back into my ms. and see what else my “people” are up to!

About The Author


Leave a Reply

Please note: Comment moderation is currently enabled so there will be a delay between when you post your comment and when it shows up. Patience is a virtue; there is no need to re-submit your comment.