“The Drive to Write”

Welcome to Thorsday, where I stomp around and pretend that I’m a Norse god of thunder!

Thorsday exists for whatever lightning bolts strike me during the week, and let me just tell you, gentle viewers, have I got a lighting bolt to the cranium this week.

A quick note: for those of you unfamiliar and maybe a little annoyed by my appellation “gentle viewers,” allow me to explain. If you, like me, love the absurd and adore Tom Lenk‘s character on Buffy in all his ridiculousness — well. Picture Masterpiece Theater run by the blond guy in this video.

Got it? Good.

I’ve been doing a lot of editing lately. Trimming, line edits (rearranging things, making it cleaner), fixing typos, and reading my manuscript so much I think I can offer to recite the whole thing to agents who ask for a full. I’ve been doing a lot of blogging lately (haven’t missed a day since October). I’ve been tweeting and Facebooking and poking at Google + with a stick, and then I joined Triberr, and I’ve been reading and reading and reading non-fiction craft books and poking at contests with a stick and submitting things and…and…and…..

You get the point.

What I haven’t done much of, with the exception of the 1,500 or so words open in a Word Document right now, is write fiction.

I got a little pamphlet in the mail today from The Sun Magazine. It was a teaser, filled with a couple of fun little shorts, an essay excerpt that made me want to read more, and a small vignette about a husband whose wife discovered his infidelity a week before the birth of their daughter and eleven years after they got married.

My fingers started itching.

I know that feeling, gentle viewers. I know the itchy fingers. Those itchy fingers mean that something wants out. My characters have been chatty lately. They’ve pestered me at work, while driving, while blogging and cooking and not cleaning.

They’ve been poking me with sticks. And I’m surprised at the reaction.

Not the wanting to write bit, but the wanting to write what. I have oodles of urban fantasy waiting patiently (sometimes not so patiently) in my head. I also have a standalone paranormal dystopian I’ve been playing with, and another urban fantasy series, and what could be another urban fantasy standalone. Oddly enough, what wants to come out right now is short stories.

I know, I know. WAT. As for the picture, the Cheezburger.com made me do it.

One’s about a five-year-old version of my second novel’s protagonist. It’s back story that won’t go in the book, but it’s mundane and terrifying in its own right, because it’s about The System. It’s plausible and frightening, and out of the context of my trilogy, it can be literary fiction.

I’ve never tried that before, gentle viewers. Not in earnest.

I feel like starting the query process for my novel broke down a barrier. It made me want to put stuff out there. To build my career brick by brick. It took a week and a half for the title of Chris Baty‘s closing address last week to sink in — The Drive to Write.

I’ve written prolifically for the past six months and more. I’ve written something every single day. In November, I polished off 60,000 words of fiction and another 30,000 of non-fiction blogs. It began as an exercise in self-discipline. I’ve had people ask me if I was burnt out.

I don’t feel burnt out, gentle viewers. I feel hungry. Not just for an everything bagel with salmon spread. I feel hungry for writing, for creating, for getting the itchy fingers itchier.

What makes you burn? What makes your fingers itch? What makes you want to get out of your comfort zone? Have you had a lightning bolt lately? Share it with the Thorsday crowd!

So today is a day to write. Signing off.

The stories beckon.


About Emmie Mears

Saving the world from brooding, one self-actualized vampire at a time.

Posted on February 2, 2012, in Buffy, life intervention, Thorsday, urban fantasy, writing progress and tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink. 9 Comments.

  1. i like the expression ‘drive to write’. as a matter of fact, i started my first post recently with ‘writing my mind’

  2. Great post, Emmie…happy writing…

  3. It’s a pain in the ass when you have this hunger to write but you stare at the screen and you see nothing. I’ve been wanting to edit my novel I produced during NaNoWriMo, but I couldn’t do it. Instead, I’m working on the second novel as we speak (yes, it’s a series). I can’t help it. It’s a good idea, at least, to me. Besides, I know how it will end and it will end big. I promise!

    I wish you luck, and it’s people like you who inspire me.

  4. I love that itching to write feeling — but it’s been eluding me for a few days. I’ve done a little each day, but my Muse must be recharging….

  5. This is such a great post, but I’m feeling bummed that my itch has been so deceiving the past few days — as in they only type crappy sentences, paragraphs … pages. Good writing is exhilarating. Crap is just painful 😦

  6. Kourtney Heintz

    Emmie, when I finished my first novel and was querying it, I got the idea for a short story. Something to play with while I waited for the other novel to take off. The short story eventually evolved into it’s own manuscript that I’m shopping around now. Write whatever comes to you. Who knows where it will lead or what it might become. That’s the fun part. 🙂

  7. I want to be in that same spot. I want the time to do it all. I want to be writing and editing, and yet, real life seems to rob me of the time. So unfair me thinks. 😀 But seriously, when you have the itch to be doing these things, but need to put them on hold for “other” things – slightly painful. LOVED the vid. Big fan. Probably don’t need to tell you that.

    • I hear you on the time issue. I work 45 hours a week at my “day job” as a cocktail server. As an introvert, I think that actually helps me with the rest of it, because when I come home I am so drained from being around people that I have to write.

      My husband gets a bit lonely though. :/

  8. Great blog! I always feel the “driving itch” when I’m riding in the bus on the way to school. I go through these old, fascinatingly decayed Cairo streets. That’s when I sit and think about all my characters, and my bushel of worlds, and how they interconnect. Somehow seeing all the ramshackle buildings, old mosques, and donkey carts jangling past narrow alleys helps that.

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