Monday, May 28, 2007

I Feel It!

Congratulations, you are officially the conduit of my writer's block.

Give yourself a hand!

You see, I am officially writing a book. Now keep in mind, I've said a lot of things in my life, but this time I really mean it. I've made claims that simply weren't true, though I would have denied it at the time, even to myself.

Some have been blatantly false, as in I was just taking a piss. To feel good, because growing up, feeling like me sometimes was too much to bear. That's not the way of it now, so don't feel sorry; it was a different time. One of my college favorites was pretending to be the quarterback of the Washington State Cougars. You had to be pretty stupid to believe it, or perhaps I'm being too self-deprecating. Any guesses on what my name was during the spinning of this yarn?

I also used to pretend to be a member of a "cool" fraternity, to see how the sorority girls would react. There were some houses that were known for only admitting the creme de la creme, so naturally, I wanted to see what it would be like to be part of those elite, and to see if the girls believed it was possible. Most of the time they did. I met a girl in Boston right after I had graduated from Potsdam, so I was still young and could pretend to be in school still. She was gorgeous. And after telling my story for an extended time, I could see that she was actually falling for it in a bigger way than I had expected. And that's when I knew I had blown it. I said I was a Sigma Chi, which I had been for a couple months. She asked me for the secret handshake, which I knew. But something in my manner gave me away. I'm guessing it was my guilt. As she stomped away, I knew I had given my last performance.

But I'm way off on a tangent here. I'm talking about the lies I tell myself, which naturally extend to the rest of the world. I tell myself that I can do anything, that I can learn guitar for instance, that soon I will be good enough to be in a band; I'm a great singer, though I'm actually quite limited; I'll someday own my own computer software company; I'm a great manager of people. It's the power of positive thinking on steroids, and it has its advantages. But after awhile, people stop listening, or glaze over as I describe my newest, biggest dream. Writing, however, is more than a dream. I'm actually doing it.

My mentor has read quite a bit of my work in progress, and for the first time, I'm getting the sense that he really believes I can do it. Not that he hasn't been in every way quite positive and complimentary, and maybe nothing on his end has changed; maybe the change has occurred inside me.

Either way, the result is the same.

I'm tasked with outlining my story, and that is how I started this post, looking at the blank screen of my outline and thinking, "What else could I do right now to avoid this for a little while more?" But I did manage to eke out some more details (I started this post late last night), and even came up with a killer ending, and more than one scene in between.

It's gonna happen. I feel it!


United We Lay said...

Writer's block is a powerful psychic phenomenon. Try writing about something totally different - but I guess you already did that with this post.

Toni Anderson said...

:) Well good luck. Half the battle is mind set, the other is getting to the end, the next is revision and editing. This is not to put you off, it is so you understand the journey. Publishing is a whole other thing :)

Writing a book is a journey--one only you can make. Not everybody will like the story you tell--maybe your in-laws will even describe it as 'dirty' as mine did to me just the other day in a little throwaway comment *sigh*. Don't let it put you off. Let it fire you up and dig deeper.

See--you're not the only one who can procrastinate ;)

Alan said...

Cook it up!!

Moni said...

Like I told another writer friend of mine, I'll be standing in line at your book signing. Yesss indeed! I'm so happy that you are actually following your dream. You're a damn fine writer.

Btw-there's nothing wrong with believing you are something until you can become it, some might call that faith. :)

mr. schprock said...

There's no question it's going to happen. Just don't forget the little people.

Scott said...

United - Good call. I'm thinking about doing a short story on the side.

Toni - You make excellent points, that there is much more than the first draft. For now though, I'll settle for getting that rough draft done. That's a major victory.

Alan - Ok!

Moni - It's only that sometimes I eggagerate how confident I really am, and after a while, my friends catch on. So when I say something like "I'm writing a book," they're likely to say, "Sure, uh huh."

Mr. Schprock - I appreciate your confidence in me!

Tee said...

Very exciting, Scott. We all know you can do it, too.

Cool that you have a mentor to give you some guidance :)

The Zombieslayer said...

Heh. If I had a penny for every lie I told a girl... ;)

Learning guitar though is not a lie to yourself. It is something you can do. Singing on the other hand is something from within. You either have it, or you don't. You can improve what you have, but that's about it.

Good luck with your book. Writer's block is just a fact of life. You'll get past it.

kathie said...

Hey Scott, keep at it and have fun. For me, the first draft is the best--fun, exciting, surprising. I hate the business of revision, but have done it hundreds of times so at least i know I can do it. I think that's when you make the leap--when you work through the hate. You can do it.

Kathleen said...

Woohoo! I have faith in you, Scott. And I'm totally impressed as I have trouble posting more than once a week!!! Kick some serious literary tuchas!

Beth said...

I write daily, no matter what. I think that's key ... just doing it. I've never outlined a thing. Does that make me a bad writer? LOL

Good luck!

Bailey Stewart said...

That's the key to writer's block, don't let it get you down, write something else, step away for a little bit. It's when you continually hit your head against the wall that the damage is done - go around the wall; take it one stone at a time. If you think about the whole damn wall, you'll psych yourself into a bad writing place.

I have faith in you Scott. Anyone who reads this blog knows you possess the talent.

Ultra Toast Mosha God said...

Hmmm. So many games to play.

One needs the wits of a golden-armed Quarterback when constructing falsehood set plays.

Jada's Gigi said...

You're gonna do this I think...keep on keeping on...think "little engine that could" :)

jenbeauty said...

Well there you go, no better place to start than the end!!

Anonymous said...

I think we have all stretched the truth or lied to a pretty girl at some point. In fact, I am certain that pretty girls are lied to more than any other minority on the planet.

Anonymous said...

Just take The Terminator approach. Even if you arrive with a tangle of wires and your electronic eye dangling, you'll still arrive.

magnetbabe said...

Good luck, I have utmost faith in you.

BTW- I am reading Deadwood by Pete Dexter right now. It's the book the HBO series is based off of. For some reason I keep thinking of you as I'm reading it. It could be the avatar (even though we know what you look like in real life now!) but I think the style is similar to yours as well. Very raw and gritty. I think you'd really enjoy it.

Mr. T said...

Scott, lots of good advice in a tiny little book that I share with my writing friend.

"The Pocket Muse" by Monica Wood

Good luck on the writing.

BTW, life has finally decided to spare me a few cycles so hopefully you'll see more of this blast from the past. :)

eda said...