This latest poem came from a writing exercise I did with my dear friend and fellow writer, Rob McCabe when we got together last week to do some writing. I’ve decided to submit it for inclusion in the upcoming issue of ‘The Harbor Series’, a periodical literary magazine published by the Palm Harbor School of the Novel.
It was nice to pick up the proverbial pen again. I can’t wait to get the outline finished for the middle section of Mortality, Interrupted so I can start writing scenes again.
Writers call it “the dreaded middle”.
I have sometimes relied on an uncanny sort of luck, that I seem to be both blessed and cursed with, to come through difficult situations unscathed. Most people know someone who seems to be immune to the expected disaster. Most people also know someone who seems to attract spectacularly horrendous luck. I seem to be both in roughly equal measure. The downside is that often when poised for success, the rug is abruptly pulled from beneath my feet. The obvious upside is that when I stumble, I often seem to skate through with no ill effect to the bewilderment of everyone.
I don’t necessarily have “bad” luck or “good” luck. I have ‘bizarre” luck. Because I seem to benefit about as often as I seem to suffer, I have no qualms about relying on that bizarre luck of mine when I’m in a jam. And so, I was hoping that because of this bizarre luck of mine that I might find myself unaffected by “the dreaded middle”.
No such luck.
I’m at “the dreaded middle” and I need to outline the plot as I said in my ROW80 goals. I did some research this week which got the juices flowing and I’m sure it will bear fruit. I also did a writing exercise on Friday which was good for getting back into the meat and potatoes of writing. So, I’m plugging away, and hopefully, “the dreaded middle” will eventually be conquered.
ROW80 is: A Round Of Words in 80 days.
Here’s the skinny: (from the ROW80 blog)
- We have 4 rounds a year, each running 80 days.
- Your goal can be anything you like as long as it is measurable (e.g. number of words/pages, specified amount of time to spend on writing per day/week, number of pages edited, etc.–for more on what makes a measurable goal, see this post).
- Once you have settled on a goal, you write it up on your blog (yes, you must have one) and link to it on the Goals Linky for the Round, which will be posted on the ROW80 Blog.
- If your goal changes before the end of the 80 days, simply write up a new goals post and link to it on the latest check-in day.
- We have check-ins twice a week on Wednesday and Sundays where you will update us the same way (e.g. write up a blog post of your progress and link to it on that day’s linky).
- On Twitter we use a hashtag of #ROW80 if you wanna come hang out
- And if you happen to find us after a round has begun, just write up your goals post and hop on in whenever. We’re a friendly bunch.
- Be sure to grab the ROW80 badge from the sidebar on the ROW80 Blog.
Round 4 begins October 3rd.
Now, what’s my goal?
I want to establish an outline for the middle section of Mortality, Interrupted and continue the draft through to 65,000 words (I’m currently at about 34,000).
Everyone wish me luck! (I SO need it!)
I can hear you all gasping from here, but yes. I’m still alive! *LOL*
When last we met on this site I was lamenting that I had no idea how to reverse course and get my plot back on track. I decided to put the project on the back burner while I focused on other things. I got to work on starting up a business. I’m trying to establish a charitable service organization. I got involved in a national political campaign. I put about as much distance as I could between myself and the problem, which often is exactly what I need to break through such problems.
Well, I’m very happy to announce that after six months of trying to figure out how to backtrack my plot I have no idea of how to do that. So, why am I so happy?
Because I’m not going to backtrack. I’ve come to realize that the problem isn’t the plot at all. It’s the pacing. That’s something I can fix in editing. Right now, this is the draft. The ugly first draft. It’s supposed to suck. So, I’m going to soldier on. Now, between sporadic jobs and campaign events I’ll be turning my attention back to this novel. It’s my first novel so a bumpy ride is to be expected. I’m just pleased to have you all along for this ride. Being a writer is hard and having people with me makes it feel a little less harsh. Thank you all for sticking with me.