Resolutions are tricky, of course: I dont ever want to make them a requirement, and definitely theres something approximate about choosing a calendar date to be like, OKAY TIME TO BE BETTER. At the same time, if youre going to pick enhancement and modification, you have to choose to do it, and if not now, then when?
Hahaha, I thought, what resolution did I write last year? I inspected and, uhhh, last year I wrote a 2020 Writer Resolution that said the following:
” You know the important things you do where you attempt to determine, If I had 6 months to live, what would I perform in that time? Discover basejumping? Combat a bear? Fuck a robot? I dunno. There is naturally the authorial variation of this, which is, what book would I compose? What book would I compose if i didnt know if anybody would read it, if I d even get to complete it before The End gets me, if it would even matter at all? What weird-ass, particular-as-hell, little-or-big book lives in the deep of my heart and would emerge ululating its mad goat song upon hearing a prospective death sentence? What curious narrative creature would crawl out and hiss, giddily:
Its my time, now, penmonkey!–?
And this, for me, will be like running. Running for me was always about beginning sluggish and small and building on that without burning out, without busting my shit, without tearing anything or, I dunno, what are marathoner issues? Do not their nipples bleed? Theres a rule for running and writing: IF ITS MAKING YOUR NIPPLES BLEED, MAYBE COOL IT A LITTLE, BECAUSE HOLY SHIT, NOBODY WANTS THAT.
On point due to the fact that, hello, this year is a respectable reminder of, WE ALL GON NA DIE.
So, thats it for me.
However trying to apply a single technique to each beast is difficult– you cant feed every monster the villager kids youve collected, because one monster may be adverse village kids, and it chooses farm-raised kidbeef to eat. Wanderers advised me that each book wants what it desires, requires what it needs, and we are a different writer when we start every book, and a different author when we end every book. Like the coronavirus, we alter in every host.
Anyway, this variation leads me to this peculiar point in time for me– and again, maybe for you. I am at that pivot point in between recovery and rebound. It has actually been a hard year, a broken-wing year, and I wish to fly again. I likewise understand thats not automagic: I cant simply climb up to the roof and jump off and zip up to the fucking sky. Its not 0 to 60. Its neither rest, nor running. Its the in-between, the interstitial, the liminal.
Sometimes you need to slow down, take it easy, re-evaluate.
My objective is to restore momentum.
Youre gon na pass away.
Its about creating a schedule, but likewise about cushioning that schedule with compassion, and understanding that it cant just be day after day of GO GO. When I began running, I took it sluggish, week after week, structure ability and then gradually adding time and range. Its about recovery and growing, however likewise recognizing that healing can first be about rest, however then should eventually be about getting up, and getting going once more.
You can also go too far on the self-forgiveness train, giving yourself so much room to breathe that youre just breathing, and not composing. We are continuously in this fight in between holding ourselves accountable and permitting ourselves a day of rest. A war waged in between factor and reason, in between work and peace, in between running and rest, between rebound and recovery. And you only actually arrive, I think, by knowing yourself, and you actually only know yourself as a writer by simply doing it, by writing when a lot when you can and by seeing what takes place when you do different things. We can de-mythologize our individual processes by simply fucking with them.
So, weirdly I was both really on point, and also way off base.
Know thyself: an essential author rule. And you only understand yourself as a writer not when prospering, however when failing– or when your process, your own authorial folklore, fails around you. That failure state is deeply, deeply useful.
Universe, too. Gon na pass away.”
Its about being wise and self-protective while likewise knowing that art should be made, it will not make itself. I have stories to inform and you do too, I think. So lets tell them, in the manner in which just we can, at a level simply beyond comfort– pushing when we can, pushing a little, and then going back to standard when we must. Being gentle, but powerfully so. The world deserves to hear your tales, therefore the world waits for you to inform them. At your time. At your speed. Development is development. A game of inches, not a video game of miles. We crawl, we stroll, and quickly, we run.
Well, youre dying.
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To remove the monster from the metaphor–.
We tweak the formula. When we constantly leapt right, we juke left.
Opt for love into the New Year, author pals.
To digress for a moment, there are these two polar ideas in the generic class of writing guidance– the first being YOU MUST WRITE EVERY DAY, the second being GO AT YOUR OWN PLACE AND PRACTICE FORGIVENESS. Both can be true, and both can be false, and a rigorous adherence to either of these is, I believe, where you find problem. Im progressively mindful that, and Ive talked about this before, how writers initially codify our writing suggestions for others, but then soon also start to mythologize our own processes, too. Like, we grow to accept that this is our process, that this is how we write, and further, this is how we should write. For me, I d produced a folklore about how I wrote books, and it was even true some of the time: write every day, 2,000 words, ass-in-chair, have an outline, one book after the next, and so on. It wasnt incorrect. It also wasnt right. It was simply a thing I provided for a lot of books, mainly early on in my career, and it worked when it worked and failed me when it failed me. Since, of course, every book is its own various monster, and each beast needs to be met in its own way: one monster desires town children to eat and huts to mash, another beast wants an ear to crawl into and a brain to make a nest for its babbies. Theyre various beasts. And thats fine.
Off base since, with that kind of knife to your back, its hard to be innovative. My point was indicated to be generic, of course, and I think a reasonable sense of our mortal scope works because it advises us we do not have a boundless panoply of days in which to achieve our goals, and if we desire to be an author, then we should at some point compose. And more to the point of that post, its beneficial to realize that in this limited temporal allotment we get, you might too use it to write the kinds of things you wish to write. Not what you think another person requires or wants, not in another persons universe if possible, however your story, for you, by you, owned by you, you, you, you. Not for conceited solipsism, but to SEIZE THE CREATIVE CARP and to leave behind a work that originated from your heart and your head.
Here it is: your terminal medical diagnosis.
All that includes up and makes it challenging to compose. It did for me, at least– others might have gone the other way, disappearing into their stories as an escape. For me it was definitely the feeling of being knocked down, winded, even a little broken by it.
Write, make, develop, spin stories. Develop on what you lost. And on what you find.
The resolution for me, and perhaps for you, is this year looking toward recovery and growing– an increase and return. Not some PHOENIX burn where we go from PILE OF ASH to ANGRY FIRE EAGLE, however something slower, more determined, more deliberate.
Hahaha, I believed, what resolution did I write last year? I checked and, uhhh, last year I composed a 2020 Writer Resolution that stated the following:
To digress for a minute, there are these 2 polar ideas in the generic class of composing suggestions– the very first being YOU MUST WRITE EVERY DAY, the second being GO AT YOUR OWN PLACE AND PRACTICE FORGIVENESS. For me, I d developed a folklore about how I wrote books, and it was even real some of the time: compose every day, 2,000 words, ass-in-chair, have an overview, one book after the next, and so on. You can also go too far on the self-forgiveness train, giving yourself so much space to breathe that youre only breathing, and not writing.