I realise that writing a book is like doing a giant jigsaw puzzle. Except you have to make the pieces first. You make the pieces and then work out where they go. You move them around until everything just sort of clicks into place. Then you flesh out the spaces in between.
The hardest part for me is discarding the pieces that don’t fit. That’s probably why I hate/am so bad at editing. You’ve got to murder your darlings. You’ve got to be ruthless about which make the final cut and which don’t. Instead of trying to cram everything in because you’re unable to let go.
I’ve already run into this problem with my introduction. I’ve got a good idea of how it’s going to go and I’m keeping the foot down. Just writing and writing and writing, as so many of you advised last week. I’ve gotten off to a flying start! But I can already see whole sections I’ve worked on being sent to bin.
Still, I’m trying not to think about killing my darlings just yet. I’m simply placing them in a maybe folder for the time being while I continue to write. (This helps me let them go without having to actually let them go.)
In the coming weeks and months I’ll be posting various pieces of this massive jigsaw puzzle. Some will make the cut. Others, undoubtably, will not. And you probably won’t get them in the correct order. I’m still in the constructing the pieces stage (as opposed to piecing them together stage). So, you’ll have to bare with me.
My process is a little bit messy but I realised, following all the excellent advice given last week, that I need to trust that process. I’m a free-flow pilot. When my muse goes on a tangent it’s important I let it. Even if it runs out of steam and comes to nothing. That often happens.
But I know it can connect the dots in a way my conscious mind can’t. I know that every now and then it leads me to a destination I never expected. Somewhere way better. This has already started to happen.
That, for me, is what makes the process of writing such as joy. It’s a rollercoaster. When the muse gets going, boy oh boy is it a blast. Honestly, I can’t wait to take you all along for the ride.
For now though, I just want to say thank you all for your advice and many many words of encouragement. It means a lot.
Stay tuned. This one is for all of you.
You can find more of AP2’s writing here at: https://wiseandshinezine.com
You can also find him on Medium at: https://anxiouspilot2.medium.com
You can also email him directly at: firstname.lastname@example.org