24 March 2007

day 3

today was my third day as a full-time writer. matter-of-factly, i haven't been up to much writing so far. i have finished reading robert mcKee's excellent book on storytelling and scriptwriting, and am currently trying to apply my newly acquired theoretical skills in practice. there's a german writing competition launched by austrian radio station fm4 that i'm planning to partake in. it's topic is "flood". the due date of march 30, 2007 is very close, but unfortunately, i have only found out about the competition yesterday.

i came up with topic, characters and imagery of my story rather quickly, but encountered numerous difficulties when i tried to actually start and write it today. after approximately five hours i had amassed a total of 3'222 words, including spaces. this equals a bit more than one page in 12pt font and isn't exactly much. nevertheless i was quite proud of my accomplishments and liked what i wrote... until, say, five minutes ago that was. i have taken a second look and don't like much of what i see anymore. this, as you might imagine, poses several problems:

firstly, it kills the better part of any self-esteem with regard to my writing plans i have accumulated in the past week. what has started out as a hopeful career is smashed to pieces by my inner critic. the words i thought matched my ideas well appear ill-chosen, and the text seems to lack all atmospheric composition i was trying to create during the day.

secondly, it kills all hopes of living my dream-life as a writer. the alternative way of living i had envisioned for myself - at least right now - seems completely out of reach. i wonder how everybody else finds the courage (not to speak of the money!) to keep going. suddenly, wanting to become a writer seems utterly insane.

thirdly, with the above considered, it's going to be so hard to keep going. while i am definitely not a quitter per se, i have been easily frustrated with things i can't master from the very beginning on. so stagnating at this early stage in itself is highly irritating to me. different from physical abilities like snowboarding, though, this time i will have to stick around and work it out. abandoning writing is simply not an option.

in order to get my act together, i will have to adhere to a stricter time-schedule. this means, for example, limited hours of internet access a day. i am wasting way too much time lingering around online network sites, other people's blogs and homepages of general interest. as long as it's not for research, i'll have to cut back on internet surfing massively. i have also thought about turning my phone off, but i suppose that would go all too far. altogether - and this is another unexpected backlash - i had highly underestimated the amount of planning necessary to even be able to write circumstances-wise. while all deadlines approach, right now i just feel trapped in this ever faster spinner of procrastination.

1 comment:

Christian said...

Besser als Internet und Telefon abzuschalten und ein Vorhängeschloss am Kühlschrank anzubringen ist es doch, ein inspirierendes Örtchen zu finden, wo man schön vor sich hinschreiben kann. So geht es mir mit meiner Essayarbeit zumindest. Inwieweit das auf kreativeres Schreiben anwendbar ist, solltest du ausprobieren.