Wednesday, April 4, 2007

Head-Banging Counts

It was one of those mornings where my brain was still foggy from sleep and no amount of Earl Grey was clearing it. I wanted to do anything but write, because I just couldn't wrap my head around the words. It's amazing how banging my head against the keyboard actually shakes words loose.

Not that I actually hit my head against the keyboard. But I want to. Really, I do. When none of my five or so stories doesn't sound the least bit appealing to work on, I know I'm in trouble.

Rather than give in, though, I stuck it through, and that is where the head-banging applies. I pick the story where I have some idea where the scene is going. Starting a new scene when I have to drag out the words is never a good idea. Which is why I don't always end scenes when I stop writing for the day. Having a couple of stories halted in mid-scene helps on days like today.

I pick the one where the scene is leading to a bit of action and a confrontation. And then I open the file and stare. I get up, get more tea. Sit and stare. Get a bagel. Sit and stare. Take Kate to the bathroom. Sit and stare. I manage to write out a sentence. Oh, look, 15 words! Yay~

Field a phone call. Force myself back into the chair and stare some more. "Just make it to 100 words," I tell myself. "Just 100 and call it good."

I write another sentence. Suddenly, I have a paragraph. The action is happening now, and I let every bad cliche and cheesy description have its way because at this point, they are words and I want any I can get.

I've learned how to do this from four years of NaNo (did I mention I won three of those? hee). Some days, it's the only way to get words. Today it works well, because I fly through the first couple of hundred and before I know it, I have 400 words. Doing the next two hundred isn't painful and I actually go past that and end up with over 700 for the day.

Head-banging works. It's a little painful at first, but the bruising is worth it.

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