Bonnie's excuse of the week
Friday, December 5, 2008
"I'm filling the well."
This has to be one of my most handy excuses because, to other creative types, it sounds really good. To others, however, it sounds a bit too "liquidy" and may lead to people questioning your sobriety.
Filling the well, for those who haven't dipped in, is when the writer's mind lays fallow (is that the correct term?) so that the gray matter can rejuvenate and prepare for the next season's planting of ideas. Of course, a season for a writer shouldn't equal an agricultural season, because then everything dries up and blows away. Metaphorically speaking.
So, as most writers are in full NaNo recovery mode, they have every right to sit back and fill the well. Some do this by vegging in front of the TV, others dive into a book they've been dying to read and others, bless them, reconnect with the loved ones they screamed at while trying to write 50,000 words in a 30-day period.
Since I only hit 15,000 words, a serious well-filling hasn't been necessary, but it's been verra, verra busy for me for the past few months. So I took a wee break,,, that started in November. My poor WIP, which rapidly grew from a single line to a whole bunch of pages, was dropped like a hot potato for another project and left to fend for itself.
Sure, I've been brainstorming and getting some fabulous shashoomba action, but that's not getting words on the page. And it's really hard to win over an agent or an editor with something that isn't written, let me tell you.
So how do you know when the well is full enough? I'm not sure, but I do know that I feel a lot less frantic when I'm working on something regularly instead of in bits and bites (sorry, I'm hungry; all this talk of feeding).
Maybe the key to filling the well is to know when to stop. Like before it spills over onto the new carpeting.
How does filling the well work for you? Have you ever used it as an excuse?
posted by Bonnie Staring at 9:23 AM