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Was it a win or a loss?

Posted by Mick on February 7, 2010 – 10:06 pm

Another Sunday where I had so many plans.  Another Sunday where I accomplished almost nothing.

That’s not completely true.  I actually accomplished quite a bit, it just doesn’t look like much on paper.

There’s a phrase that’s quickly becoming an anachronism.  On paper.  Although I did have a stack of index cards and a yellow pad in front of me all afternoon, all of the writing I did do was done on the computer.  So little of what we do winds up being on paper anymore.  How will we replace that phrase?

Although I actually did accomplish quite a bit, it didn’t add up to much in term of bytes.

I just don’t like the sound of it.  I don’t like how it feels.  I’m sticking with pen and paper references for my digital world.  And this diversion has gone on far too long.

Today was supposed to be a writing day.  I intended to start with a review of The Holy Deuce.  I worked on it for 30 or 40 minutes before I decided I had no business writing a review of it.  One of my friends has a major role in the film, and writing the review just felt awkward.  That might change, but probably not.  I do have some things to say about it, and that will probably come here rather than a review.  Once I had shelved that idea, it was time to do some work on Mastodon/Dethklok.

Today included many distractions.  That’s not totally a bad thing.  The best distraction was a viewing of a classic ghost story, High Plains Drifter.  I didn’t intend to watch it, but I walked through the living room to get coffee and Tara was watching it and what would you do?  I pretended I wasn’t going to stay and sat on the arm of the couch for about 15 minutes before I threw in the towel and sat down.

No matter how many times I see it, I always walk away feeling like it’s better than I thought it was last time I saw it.  I’m hoping that’s because I’m learning more about my craft.

Then I tried to get back in to the groove.  I actually got some work done.  Not what I thought I was going to do, but still, progress is progress.  I intended to do some basic scene work today, but one of my plot points has been bothering me.  It felt forced.  So I thought about it for awhile.  I played it out in my head.  And I figured it out.  I was forcing it.  The story wasn’t what I thought it was, the story was something else.

That’s pretty cryptic, isn’t it?  I’m trying to think about how I can explain it without giving away parts of the story I don’t want to tell you.  Layer that with the fact that I’m not completely aware of what I’m doing at this point.  No one ever taught me how to write, I’m making it all up as I go along.  I don’t know how it works for other writers, but for me, at some point the story takes on a life of it’s own.  I’m telling the story, I’m not making the story up.  Sometimes I tell it wrong, and then it becomes work.  The more I let the story tell itself, the easier it is.  This afternoon, I realized where I had gone off track, and the story began to flow naturally again.

DISCLAIMER:  I do not in any way believe that the story is a supernatural entity.  I do not believe that the story is real.  I’m not channeling some force from another dimension.  The story about where the story comes from is a story I’m making up for myself to explain to myself how to write the story.  And because I’m a storyteller, I’m telling you that story.

Then again, that might just be the story talking.

And somewhere in the midst of all of this, my real life decided to require some attention.

At the end of it all, I was left feeling like I failed in every aspect of my life today.  I should have been a better writer.  I should have been a better son.  I should have been a better friend.  I should have been a better husband.  I should have been a better geek.

I still do guilt very well.  At least I’m a success at something.

But I’m learning.  And I’m trying.  I’m trying real hard.

I’m going to call this day a push.  Be good to each other.


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