IWSG: Time-Sinks & Other Black Holes

Insecure Writer’s Support Group

My main fear in writing is that I may put a good deal of effort, and time, into this “hobby” only to discover, somewhat belatedly, that no one wants to read what I have written – and what was I thinking anyway? In my brain, how did I think this was going to work out? I feel like a crazy person whose version of reality only appears to overlap with everyone else’s. The Narrative begins to creep into ordinary life. Suddenly, I find myself walking around and watching the world, while wondering how I can fit this or that scene or conversation or General Feeling of It All into my book.

I begin putting together non-narrative related collections of words at service of The Narrative.

1) research including research on strange subjects that the FBI or Interpol might consider troubling

2) story outlines with chapter titles which look really inane (to me) without the story

3) story synopses in which I occasionally write myself little notes like SERIOUSLY? and THERE IS NO PLOT HERE – and on rare occasion something like **REMOVE THIS SELF-DEPRECATING NOTE BEFORE LETTING ANYONE ELSE SEE THIS. NOT THAT ANYONE EVER WILL BECAUSE THERE IS NO PLOT HERE**

4) character and scene sheets which I have every intention of completing later – so as to ensure continuity

5) Other. (By other I mean if anyone else EVER reads these things I intend to firmly maintain plausible deniability. *Obviously* someone else borrowed my laptop and drew those horribly inaccurate diagrams and maps and doodles. Because *I* would never do something that inept. Ha ha.)

Somewhere in the midst of all this work, it now and again occurs to me that I’m a crazy person if none of this works out. Even if I found something else to do, say Final Fantasy console games, at least I’d have other fans out there willing to do these things with me. Heck, all those crazy little charts I’ve allegedly been drawing up could go on gamefaqs.com, where fanatics like me could make good use of them.

Right, I think. All of that is true and well and good. But here I am again, engaging in this possibly futile pursuit with no certain guarantee of reward. And, it really is a lot of work.

Truth be told, though, I love it.   I even love the part where I’m afraid that this may not pay off in the end, because that’s when you know the work really is going to be rewarding, when it might really mean something to someone.

Or, so I tell myself. This still beats waiting in a line for hours to attend some silly rock concert – not that I would judge anyone else for making that life choice. But then again, maybe I am. Maybe that’s part of that decision to put pen to paper, finger to keyboard, and write – write like there is no tomorrow, like the world really is contained in this tiny little space. And don’t look down from the tightrope.