Wednesday, February 10, 2010

Work in Progress Wednesday 2/10/10

For this week’s WIP, I’m looking at tackling my WIP’s largest challenge:

Other works in progress.

It seems I’ve been chalk full of ideas lately, and my desktop is beginning to get cluttered by all of half finished documents just hanging around. Although this sounds like a good thing, I know myself well enough to know it’s a sign of one thing – lack of focus.

A piece of work requires focus; otherwise it’s just a fleeting idea, not a story. For something to become a story it must have a narrative arc and each character must also have an arc. Although I’ve become an expert at openings –I find myself writing another one, instead of deciding what happens next. It seems I’m lacking commitment to the honestly of the story, of the character. Since I write narrative non-fiction narrative/personal essays, the narrator is me.

So, what’s holding me back?


I can’t move on because I can’t tell the story without being completely honest. So, fear of honestly must be what’s holding me back.

I tend to write for audience or in response to a call. For my day job, I write about families or business owners for a very specific audience, and this is easy as pie. It’s easy to tell the truth when you know what box to put it in and what bow to place on top.

I think it would do my writing muscle some good to write just to write. When I take the audience out of the equation, those fears of what people will think or how they’ll react will be lifted, and the story will be more honest. The story will be written simply because that story must be written. This why, the story will actually be written instead of a dozen half-told stories, I’ll have told a few stories well.

I can always go back – that’s what re-writes are for!

What’s holding you back in your writing?

How do you keep your stories honest?


lovemylevi said...

Following you from the Friday Follow link-up! Hope to see you at

Mom vs. the boys said...

following you back! I've been waiting to do those hearts with my guys since they were tiny, I love them! if you missed them, check out our snowflakes we made too, they look great all winter in the window

The Peg Board said...

Ah yes.. fear.. a big hurdle.. we all just have to work through it!!!
Happy Friday Follow!!

Miss Fanny said...

I'm visiting you from Friday Follow. This is fun. Happy Valentine's Day and happy blogging!

Kim said...

Yes, fear... The excuse I name for not writing is work and general busyness, but I know for me also there is an element of fear. When we write non-fiction and when we are the narrators and we are writing about our personal experiences, we are putting ourselves out there. And everyone seems to have an opinion about something - be it writing style or content. I know there are people out there (including me!) who will, and do, applaud what you write and are excited to read your work. Please don't let fear get in your way of doing that which God has given you the gift to do. Hey, I have a great idea... develop a helpless motto specifically for your writing and say it constantly as you prepare to write and as you write! If you want your writing to be truly great, allow God to put Himself out there through you! You don't have to be putting yourself out there alone!

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