Friday, September 28, 2007

Gaining Momentum

After two weeks of slim pickings, the momentum is building up again.

I have found over the past month or so that the drive to write, the desire to tell the story, is always there, but it is the momentum that is hard to maintain.

If your situation dictates that writing can only be performed in the few spare hours that you have in a day, a minor event can upset that routine. A major event can almost derail the whole process, and a multitude of events can find you at the point of abandonment, feeling frustrated and anxious, like you have literally lost the plot.

The last month was chaotic. Weddings, presentations, long hours at work, house hunting – it’s been fun, it’s been stressful. And I haven’t managed to string more than a few pages together in one sitting.

Treasured characters became strangers. The storyline felt foreign and incoherent, lacking direction. The finish line was a million miles away. It was all falling apart.

I’ve endured these moments. When I’ve managed to steal an hour here, thirty minutes there, to sit down and write, all I achieved was to fuel my own anxiety. Looking at the words on the screen, the clear vision I had a few weeks ago had fogged over, become opaque, lost forever behind a jumble of words.

I knew, though, that that wasn’t the case. It was all still with me, but in those fleeting moments, it was hard to see this.

As soon as things died down, without stressing, without thinking too much about it, I dived back into the routine. It required a re-read of notes, a quick review of the chapters gone by and a little faith in myself, but the ball started to roll again, albeit slowly at first.

But I can feel the momentum coming back.

It never completely disappears - the spark, the drive, the ideas - but left alone for a while, it can become malnourished and lethargic. But it never dies and its recovery period is very short. Before you know it, not only will the momentum return, you may find yourself struggling to keep up.

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