1. Melzaar the Almighty
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    Melzaar the Almighty Contributing Member Contributor

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    What do your writing highs and lows look like?

    Discussion in 'General Writing' started by Melzaar the Almighty, May 5, 2011.

    I'm just incredibly curious now if anyone else has similar writing experiences to share. :p I think I've learnt something about myself this evening. I found myself eating my words about something I said here a short time ago, that being something like:

    "I remember every single word I've ever written"

    I was looking for some notes in my notebook from Christmas to help me with my essay, and opened the book at the start because I didn't realise that my scribblings from the holiday/exam season last semester were in the opening. I was pretty much insane at that point: I'd done 3 massive essays with next to no sleep, as well as pulling a couple of 7 hour stints in the library to research my dissertation. I was sicker than I've been pretty much ever but didn't know it yet, and my only real memory aside from falling asleep in a Chinese restaurant is somehow throwing my lamp off the table and smashing it when I was half-asleep, and having a huge break down because I was convinced it was going to poison me. :p

    Now, I've also said somewhere else here that I never, ever stop writing, but it just struck me today how writing is to me. I looked in this notebook and realised that I could see my focus trailing off from the last scenes I wrote of what had been my Next Big Thing (I got about 50,000 words in before this point but it just suddenly stops as I get sick), and then there's just 6 different stories, all fragments of things I started, or random scenes from stories I was writing which weren't even part of the timeline - non-canon scenes, openings to stories in genres I never write (I was writing a WESTERN. WHY, Melzaar? WHY?) and all sorts of crazy stuff. Scenes which I couldn't even identify what story they were from. The weirdest thing is that I was sure there was so much more of all of it, and the fact it only runs to fifteen pages before I got my mind back surprises me more than the fact I have the pages of gibberish at all.

    It's almost like I just stuck a pen in my ear and let my dreams write what was happening, because I could have hallucinated all of December and I'd have no way of knowing. In fact maybe I did. :p

    So, that was clearly the lowest point I've ever had in my writing - writing stuff without even knowing I was doing it, and stuff that makes no sense and has no possible use to me now. It's weird, just thinking about how my subconscious is so well-trained to write that even when I was practically a zombie I was firing out random ideas, coming up with story concepts far beyond my normal range (seriously. Westerns?) almost like clawing at writing just to keep myself moving. Or that my writing got the sickness along with me or something.

    Anyone else got similar experiences, or did I really lose my mind this December? :p Once I got better I started a new novel, stuck to it, and finished it in a couple of months, so no permanent damage. :p
     
  2. spklvr
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    spklvr Contributing Member Contributor

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    I think you lost your mind, just a little :p
    I'm guessing lots of stress in addition to illness can do that to a person.

    Personally never experienced something quite like that, and honestly not sure how to answer... I guess my writing highs are when I'm energized and inspired, sitting at my desk and not slouching in the couch or bed. At those times, every sentence I write is practically perfect, and even it it's my first draft, I barely have to change those parts later when I revise.

    My writing lows... when I'm tired, slouching in the bed and writing incoherent crap that I barely remember in the morning, just because I want to write... and I guess that's something similar to what you experienced actually.

    I'm absolutely addicted to writing though. Usually when I come up with an idea I can wait until I get home or is on a break (as it's usually at work between customers I come up with ideas), but now and then I HAVE to write. Just today, we were having a sale and I was so inspired I had to write single words and half sentences between customers. It was just a plot outline, but still. Horrible writing.
     
  3. Melzaar the Almighty
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    Melzaar the Almighty Contributing Member Contributor

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    I kinda stopped posting on this forum much over the winter, so you all missed out on crazy Melly :D

    That makes me feel a lot better, though. :p
     
  4. spklvr
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    spklvr Contributing Member Contributor

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    It's actually a lot of fun seeing what I wrote the next day :p
    One night I started out writing English, then switched to Norwegian, and ended the night by writing German... and I clearly do NOT know that much German anymore.
     
  5. Melzaar the Almighty
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    Melzaar the Almighty Contributing Member Contributor

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    Okay, that makes writing a western seem almost normal. :p
     
  6. popsicledeath
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    popsicledeath Banned

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    Hah, I've been doing crazy zombie writing for a few years now. Was having a lot of health issues, chronic sinus infections, fatigue, etc. Would write essays for classes, not even remember the next day what it was I wrote about, and get them back (from very sympathetic professors I was thankful to have) with comments like "This is really great, but I noticed I circled nearly 5 prepositions a page that were flat out wrong... are you okay."

    I was struggling so hard to hold the big concepts and general technique together, that the little things were being lost, and I was literally writing of my prepositions on a way that was getting awkward (though less so when professors realized I was very out of it most of the time, not just trying to invent new styles).

    Though, that's not 'real' writing. My real writing high was with a story last Fall where everything sort of finally clicked. All the academic crap I'd learned finally stopped causing noise, and the story just came out, in tact (thankfully with all the academic lessons and stuff still working, but without having to obsess over them). My professor, a critically acclaimed fiction writer had very little feedback beyond 'bravo!' written at the end (when in the past his feedback has been, well, one time he simply told me a story wreaked of unwiped [butt] and that I needed to stop screwing around, so not like he's one to blow smoke). It was the high, having everything come together like that.

    The low was when, only a few months later, that story headlined my writing sample for my applications, and subsequent rejections, to all 8 of the graduate writing programs I'd applied to.
     

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