|clip art courtesy pixabay|
"The pages are still blank, but there is a miraculous feeling of the words being there, written in invisible ink and clamoring to become visible." --Vladamir Nabokov
Work on the first draft of current WIP is progressing but, depending on the day--or week, words flow or words dry up. Pages have scribblings (I'm handwriting this first draft!) or are left half-blank. We've talked about this before (here and here), but the first draft can seem so...well...blank. I'm in need of a shot of encouragement again. How about you? We're in good company, you know...
1. Begin. "Whatever you can do, or dream you can, begin it. Boldness has genius, power, and magic in it." --Johann Wolfgang von Goethe
2. Close the door. "Close the door. Write with no one looking over your shoulder. Don't try to figure out what other people want to hear from you; figure out what you have to say. It's the one and only thing you have to offer." --Barbara Kingsolver
3. Take chances. "Get it down. Take chances. It may be bad, but it's the only way you can do anything really good." --William Faulkner
4. Jump off cliffs--and grow wings. "We have to continually be jumping off cliffs and developing our wings on the way down." --Kurt Vonnegut
5. Develop intestinal fortitude. "Everything in life is writable about if you have the outgoing guts to do it, and the imagination to improvise. The worst enemy to creativity is self-doubt." --Silvia Plath
6. Get yourself a club. "You can't wait for inspiration. You have to go after it with a club." --Jack London
7. Raise rabbits. "Ideas are like rabbits. You get a couple and learn how to handle them, and pretty soon you have a dozen." --John Steinbeck
8. Wear ear plugs. "Don't listen to people who tell you that very few people get published and you won't be one of them. Don't listen to your friend who says you are better than Tolkien and don't have to try any more. Keep writing, keep faith in the idea that you have unique stories to tell, and tell them." --Robin Hobb
And keep the end goal in sight, that's what I keep telling myself. Each word gets you closer! Even if the ending holds some surprises you couldn't fathom at the beginning:
"I may not have gone where I intended to go, but I think I have ended up where I needed to be." --Douglas Adams
Any words of advice you could share on staying the course? How do you resist giving up on that elusive first draft?