Tuesday, 28 June 2011

I have this rather odd notion that I can actually

write. Some of you will know what I mean.
I sit down in front of the computer each morning and write something on these pages but that is not what I mean. No, the other idea about writing is something quite different.
As most of you who read this by now will know Nicola Morgan has just written a book about writing books, writing to get them published. It is full of good advice. It would make a marvellous resource for teaching creative writing in schools. My father says he would have used it had it been around when he was teaching. I have read it. I recommend reading it.
When it comes to writing a book however I still tend to plunge in at the deep end of the pool and cat-paddle madly towards the other end. Of course the pool is Olympic size and I am not terribly good at paddling.
There are any number of humans in the lanes next to me. They all seem to complete laps of the pool in record time. They bump me out of the way and I have to weave from one lane to the other. It takes a long time to get to the end of the pool. It is not straight paddling.
There are times when I feel I will never reach the end of the pool. There are times when I feel as if I am going to drown, when I get knocked below the surface by waves of strong swimmers passing me. It is not a pleasant sensation. At times it is truly frightening. I have to reach the other end. The survival of the characters at the side of the pool depends on me and nobody else.
I have managed to reach the end of the pool several times. Each time I have done it I have looked at the pool clock and found everyone else has headed off to the dressing rooms and then to the bar to celebrate something. I think the chararacters have gone with them. I slink off and tell myself - another lap tomorrow. It has to get better with practice.


widdershins said...

It does ...

... and next time you're cat-paddle-lapping, take a look across the pool. There are a whole lot of lanes, just over there, hidden by the mist, where a whole lot of cat-paddling is going on too.

liz fenwick said...

Don't measure yourself against others. Each book takes as long as it takes...no one else is writing it or could be. Every one 'swims' differently and each result is different.

Hang in there and stay afloat.

catdownunder said...

Yes, it is the lap technique I need to work on though. I don't think I will ever swim a purrfect lap...no writer does but purrhaps I can improve my level of fitness?
Oh Widdershins is right and so are you Liz - but a cat can keep trying to paddle well enough to eventually reach the other end along with some of the crowd! :-)