In terms of writing fiction, what works for me NOW may not be the same a few years from now.
Or maybe it will be…who knows?
I’ve been listening to podcasts, webinars, email video mini-courses, etc. all designed to help me with my writing (both in craft and in business) but the one thing that I should be doing has, sadly, not been attended to as much as it should have been this last week…the writing!
Practice makes better (not perfect…nobody’s perfect but God!)
I remember practicing scales on the piano.
Over and over and over again.
Then chords…I,IV,V,VII (sometimes a minor thrown in for good measure) then back to I.
Honestly, I don’t know why my mother and father paid for piano lessons for me. I don’t remember expressing a real interest or desire to play it. In fact, I’d wait until the day of my lesson to work in a little practice beforehand so that my piano teacher wouldn’t know I’d not practiced.
Of course she probably knew I hadn’t, but was too polite to say so…
I liked the piano, but preferred to play the flute in school.
Now, however, I probably couldn’t play a note.
Point is, without practice, I’ll never improve my writing skills…it’s just that simple.
While learning craft is so important, so is practicing it.
Unlike the piano, I have a great desire to not only write stories, but to make my living from it.
And to do that, I’ve got to work out what works for me, and right now, that’s writing into the dark (by the seat of the pants, pantsing, whatever you want to call it).
Honestly, the thought of working out each and every scene, doing detailed character descriptions, etc. makes me ill.
It truly does.
Granted, there are times when I’m stuck, have no idea where a story is going…it’s complete rubbish, etc., all of the things the critical voice throws at me, when I wish I were an outliner, but then once I work my way through the story I discover that, yeah, I’m so glad I’m a discovery writer!
Honestly, between you and me, I think I will always write by the seat of my pants. It’s too much fun to do otherwise!
But, that doesn’t mean I’m closing myself off to other writers’ techniques, ideas, suggestions, etc., If I find something that sounds interesting, then I’m all for giving it a shot, at least once or twice.
But most importantly, the writing has to take priority…practicing the craft lessons I’ve learned, and using them to write better and better stories!