FairBanks Island – Day 6

I Used a lot of what I’ve already written this time. I guess it’s fine to use it, if it’s good and I think I have come up with a way to know if they pass the test or not. When I come to a part where I’ve done a lot of description and dialogue already, it’s extra hard to let go of that part, that’s why I read it, then I rewrite it, very shortly, only doing the narrative. Then, if the story takes another turn, I am forced to write it all over again, but if there are only minor changes, I add the new ideas and keep the old. That way, the narrative is clear, which allows me to make fixes later on once the story is done. This is chapter 4 and 5, unedited: You can keep track of my progress HERE.

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FairBanks Island – Day 5

I used to get comments on my post and I was a bit dismayed that it’s not happening anymore. Then I checked my settings that made commenting on my stuff pretty restrictive. Have you tried to comment but couldn’t? Either way, it should be easier now. This is Chapter 3, unedited. You can keep track of my progress HERE.

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Writing a Novel is Hard…

I’ve come to realise that working on a novel is hard, I know, right, shocker! Nevertheless, I had this illusion that I could make anything rather smoothly, thus, whenever things got too difficult I jumped to another project. The logic was that I would return to it once I learned how to write. Though it is true you get better with practise, I think my naive outlook (or overconfidence, perhaps) made me never finishing a project once it got hard. There’s merit to finishing something even if it’s not perfect, after all.

I honestly thought that I was inadequate because it got hard, or because there was something fundamentally wrong with the story itself which made it impossible to finish. I hoped that once I got better, I would be able to finish any story without difficulty. Though it is true that you get better, there is absolutely no excuse not to finish a project you started. Which is why I’m sticking with the current story – Fairbanks Island – no matter what. I’m going to finish my other stories too, one after the other, no matter the end result.

With this in mind, I’ll try to be more picky about the stories I choose in the future. There are so many ideas that I want to explore which I’ll never be able to in a lifetime; and sense I’ve accepted that stories will be hard to make, I’ll only choose those stories that really excite me! Something meaningful and worth the readers time beyond simply to entertain.

I hope your writing is doing well and if you are not a writer, hope you enjoy my stories which you can find, here. Consider following if you like what you read!

FairBanks Island – Day 4

I told myself that I would never re use anything I had already written, but what happens when nothing you come up with is as good as the thing that already exists? I do really want to approach the story with a fresh mind, but, what I most of all want to do is follow my intuition, and my intuition is telling me that the text that already exist is the better version. I hope I’m not masking Intuition with Laziness… This is chapter 2 and part of chapter 3, unedited: You can keep track of my progress HERE.

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Let the Story Happen

For those that write on intuition, do you sometimes find it difficult to continue writing on certain parts? Like you hit a wall when before words flowed like water? I often wondered why that is. It’s not like I hit the dreaded middle point or anything, it’s too early, or too late for that to happen.
I personally think it’s because that certain parts are not supposed to be. If you’ve written parts of the story already, chances are that you have a plot in your mind and you try to make the characters reach those points. For planners, or whatever they are called, I call them planners, that’s perfectly fine, but for those that rely on intuition, that is how a story die.
I recently read Stephen King’s book On Writing and he says that plot just happen. I have to agree. You cannot force your characters to do anything, at least I can’t – they struggle…
I have tried a lot of ways to write but I think the way I find most enjoyment from writing is when I let go. I clear my mind and make it a point to never use anything I’ve already written. I will rewrite the story over and over until the characters stop struggling.
I don’t know if this will produce particularly good stories. There are many things one must consider when making a story, but if it flows easily and doesn’t resist, I think that’s a good foundation to expand on.

Fairbanks Island – Day 3

I have to admit something, this is not the first draft I’m working on, but it might as well be because I’m approaching it with a fresh mind. The first stages of writing is always messy, in my case. I jump from ideas to ideas and often lose my way before I struggle to find my way back. I have tried different ways to remedy this, but it seems that’s just how I write. It’s suppose to be chaotic until you find your way and I think the story is starting to settle in my mind. In any case, here’s part of chapter 2, unedited: You can keep track of my progress HERE.

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Fairbanks Island – Day 2

Damn, I cannot help to edit… Whenever I start a new day of writing, I re-read the last chapter so that I get back into the flow, but when I do, I often find new things I want to add so that is what I have done. You are not supposed to, but I find it fun… Here’s the edited version (and significantly longer) chapter 1. You can keep track of my progress HERE.

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Fairbanks Island – Day 1

I told myself I would post my writing progress every time I write in the hopes to destroy the perfectionist in me and break the taboo of the first draft. This is the unedited version of FairBanks Island (Title Work-in-Progress)

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About Stories and Doubt

I’m gonna be frank, I’m rather angry at myself… You know as a writer (or an artist) you get excited over a project? You work it in your head, for a little bit, then you write it down in a first draft, all easy, all fun! But somewhere along the way, the story just doesn’t excite you anymore… I don’t know why this happens, why, at a certain point, it gets so hard to finish what I started?

I had a story, written about 4-5 years ago which I finished in 6 months. I had no experience at all about writing and didn’t know what I was doing, but I finished it, and I had fun. Then I showed it to other people and I realized that I couldn’t write for shit. I absorb their critique, I really did, and it helped, to a degree. I wanted to prove that I’ve become better and I wrote a short story. I really liked it, and people liked it too, at certain parts.

They didn’t like the ending, specifically, and even though I thought it ended where it should, I tried to find more of the story when there was nothing there. (I guess it was the best kind of critique, they wanted to know more, after all) but I think it was then doubt started to seep into my mind. I tried so hard to make the story the way that they wanted, but in the end, I could not finish it.

It broke me, I think, because I haven’t been able to finish anything since; nothing longer than a thousand words, anyhow. I honestly began to think that if I worked on a story too much, I’d ruin it, much like I did with my short story. Which is silly, everything you do makes the story better, you are building it, one word at a time. But I cannot shake this doubt. In my head, the story I’m now working on is ruined and is beyond salvageable.

I really want to believe that what I write is better than I think it is, which is why I’m gonna try something.

I don’t care how awful the story turns out, I need to finish something! No matter how awful I think it is. I need to believe that every word is an improvement, or at least one step closer to finding the story, or the fossil, as Stephen King would say – I really recommend his book On Writing.

So here’s the deal: I’ll be posting everything that I write, unedited, on the same day I write it. No matter how little, or how much I end up doing, it’s gonna get posted. I’m effectively gonna spam my own blog with garbage! I hope you’ll bare with me, but I understand if you choose to leave.

 

Good Ideas Will Never Leave You

Ever tried just writing something down without anything in mind? Often, a word or a sentence will appear… anything can be formed then; a story, an essay, a poem, a blog post, a diary entry, anything. These are the true thoughts, those that have festerd and merge with other ideas for lord knows how long, until they become true. They are the thoughts you’ve resisted to write down because the written thought is where they come to die, they’ll leave you.

However, thoughts that come to you because they were written, they are the thoughts that you would never have considered without a pen in your hand or a keyboard in your lap. They are thoughts that amaze you to such a degree that you can hardly believe they come from you. You wonder if maybe somebody else is guiding your hand, telling you what to write.

When I write fiction, I have countless thoughts that it would be impossible to return to all of them, because they are a mess, and sometimes incoherent and only makes sense to the person I was at the time. I always fretted over this, trying to organise them so that I could find them easily, but that ended up taking as much time as writing itself, and, I found that I rarely returned to them. Instead, I’d write them down again from memory and I believe that is for the best, because you only recall what sticks with you and those ideas are often the best parts.

What we need to realise is that a story is organic, and so is your mind. Accept your flaws and the unknown. Embrace that there are things beyond our explanation and let it shine through your writing.


© Christopher Stamfors

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