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  1. CSwolery
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    CSwolery Member

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    Writing is Agony

    Discussion in 'General Writing' started by CSwolery, Jul 22, 2011.

    Hi! I'm a very long time frustrated writer. I've joined, because if I'm ever going to actually write something publishable I'm going to need help. Many, many people have complained aobut not being able to write, but I can tell you exactky why: See I have very pronounced ADD, and my mind is always zooming. For writing the process actually accelerates as I'm trying to get it all down, and at 25 words per minute I can only type about 1/4 as fast as I need to. Litteraly, my fingers are on the first paragraph, my mind as at the end of chapter one and I'm screaming in frustration. Writing is utter torment, and I will use any and I do mean any excuse not to do it.

    The thing is I don't even want to write. I want to read the stories I am trying to write but no one has written them so I have to. This makes me upset. Entertainment should not require and effoirt on the part of the auduence. Then there's the editing issues. I can fix typos all day, but I need somone to find them for me because I've gone over stories four times, forwards and back, and still not caught half of the very painful, obvious typos. It's just not something I can do, and it's a waste of my time to try. Then there's the stories themselves: take my baby, the one I have to finish before I die. It's called Defender of the Reich, it's an AH novel about a German General who overthrows Hitler at the end of World War II and fights the Allies to an honorable peace. Simple right? Well no, cause in order for the story to work, the Germans must still have a shot at stalemating the Allied Juggernaut and that means I have to reimagine the ENTIRETY of the Second World War, and that expands one book into seven, one for each year of the war. Now I really like how this has devereged DotR into it's own universe (the Devil's a female, it's that different). I like the subplots, but six frickin books to get to seeing Hitler getting his brain blown out? I'm a little overwhelmed.

    So I can't seem to focus, slow my mind or otherwise do what is neccessary to write these damn things. I need write these stories: I had a friend who says that they torment me like a calling (devine calling) that will never let me go because that's what I'm supposed to do. Trying to write is, to be frank, attempting to shit when you have the worst constipation ever. If it's hurting that much, I think I need to try a new approach, cause the traditional approaches don't work for me at all.

    Anyway, thank you for reading this.
     
  2. One90proof
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    One90proof New Member

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    Maybe you could try telling the story verbally, a chapter at a time, into a memo recorder then transcribing it later after your brain has shifted out of high gear.
     
  3. colorthemap
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    colorthemap Contributing Member

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    I had a similar problem so here is what I think: don't write until you want to, otherwise you won't ever care for it. And don't worry if it is good or not, fix that later.

    Also on another note don't write your novel like a series it needs the regular elements of a story.
     
  4. Yoshiko
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    Yoshiko Contributing Member Contributor

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    I think your mentality is your problem. If you don't want to write then you're going to write crap. You're going to be frustrated and bored and you'll just flounder before stalling altogether.

    Don't think of yourself as the "audience". You are not part of an audience and you won't be until you have the story written; you are the creator and it is your job to put the words to paper, not anyone else's. If you want to become part of the audience and read back an amazing story then you to write it first. Don't whine about it and just do it. Write the story. Hack it apart. Then write it again. Part of being a writer is having the discipline to write it in the first place. You seem to believe your story is worthy of being written, so respect it and treat it right. It cannot write itself without you. Take it as slowly as you need to - 100 words at a time, if you have to - just get it written.

    I also have to second what colorthemap has said: don't think of your novel as a series. This puts more pressure on you and you might become too involved with the overall picture to realise that each book should be able to standalone as a single story too. For now, try to focus on just the first story - worry about the rest later because for a series to even stand a chance you are going to need a solid foundation to work with.
     
  5. CSwolery
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    CSwolery Member

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    Actually I don't think this will be too much of a problem...I think. When you say that they should stand on their own, I gotta ask if you can start reading Return of the King without having read both the Two Towers and the Fellowship of the Ring? Internal plot archs can be done, but my (anti)hero protagonist's evolution to where he is willing to kill Adolf Hitler (with whom he has close and cordial relations) is something that will take the whole of the series.

    The first part is called Clique of Theives. That book may have a disturbingly happy end because in three months the Germans have conquered all of Contenental Europe, Russia is arrogantly occupied in Finland, and Britian is on the ropes without any allies. But Clique of Theives is so important because most of it takes place in the last days of peace before WWII. See, I want my characters to feel like peace time characters: they are not warriors and battle madiens, they are husbands, and wives, and children. And they all have things they'd rather do. I figure the war should be seen as a damnable interuption on the very normal lives of very normal characters. They gotta step up and become heros, but war will always be not their element. War is a travesty while it's going on, and then a tragedy forever thereafter. I didn't mean for that to be a central point, but how better to demonstate that than a WWII epic filtered through the prism of Germans?
     
  6. e(g)
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    e(g) Member

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    Just based on what you are saying, I honestly don't think you'll see a writing project like this through to the end.

    The thing is I don't even want to write.

    [regarding editing] ...and it's a waste of my time to try.

    Trying to write is, to be frank, attempting to shit when you have the worst constipation ever.

    Perhaps fiction writing isn't what you should be doing. Perhaps some kind of non-fiction writing would suit you better.

    I've read a lot of posts in various groups where writers talk about having ADD. I'm always curious as to why someone with ADD would ever want to write a book. It seems they would do better being news journalists.

    So, I don't really have any advice on how to turn you into a fiction novelist when it's not something you like or want to do.

    Good luck, C.S.
     
  7. Mckk
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    Mckk Moderator Staff Supporter Contributor

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    Quite frankly, you sound like you HATE writing. You can't call yourself a writer if you hate writing - I'm not sure why you'd even want to call yourself that considering how much you hate it.

    I'd ask myself this question: why do I write?

    And if your only answer is either "I don't know" or "Only God knows because it's f-ing horrible" then that's probably your answer. Just quit fiction.

    On the other hand, why haven't you thought of using a recording device? If thinking too fast is your main problem - just tell the story verbally and record it. Still not as fast as thought but certainly 10 times faster than writing. So you have the story down.

    Now if you hate to edit and this is for pure pleasure anyway cus it sounds like all you wanna do, actually, is imagine the story without having to put any work to it - eg. basically for pure personal, passive pleasure - then you can just listen to your own voice telling you the story without worrying whether you've worded it well or not. Really, if no one's ever gonna read it, who cares if it's good or not as long as you enjoy it?

    But my main point stands - just stop writing, no one's making you. Writing is supposed to be fun - and writing is frigging hard work. If you can't get through the hard work, then frankly, my dear, you don't love it enough to finish. So I wouldn't even bother. Stop wasting your time.
     
  8. kid
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    kid New Member

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    Feeling like this is relatively normal. Its like in sports, exercising, etc. I'm not sure how familiar you are with MMA, but in EVERY fight a fighter has, they are never 100%. Broken and cracked bones, pulled muscles, black eyes. You have to learn how to play through the pain. Cut out some time in your day to sit down and write, no matter what. You aren't going to want to do it, but do it anyways.
     
  9. heather_ashcraft
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    heather_ashcraft Member

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    that guy put it perfectly with his sports analogy..

    and for one thing i dont beleive at all that you dont like or hate writing...that is completely illogical given the whole of your statement..if you didnt like it or hated it,then there would be absolutely no value whatsoever in it...and thus you would not participate in it...

    the fact that your trying to the point of agony proves you get use out of it,and thus the resource has an ascribed value of utility to you..

    though on a completely different subject,your problem is immensly similar to mine...ive been trying for 7 years just to get started with a book..hundereds of attempts,still havent gotten anything going yet...part of that is due to the fact that i would try when i didnt have any inspiration

    inspiration is your writing fuel...and you cant write without it...

    here is an idea..do what i do sometimes...take whatever writing you got now,and put it away in a box or something...and if you cant bear to add something to that writing,just write about whatever you can,rinse and repeat this process over and over again,putting each little small peice of unfinished work into the box,

    youll eventually forget about them completely,then youll be able to read your own work and be entertained by it because your at that point reading it from an outsider`s perspective instead of an insider`s perspective..and thus can enjoy it
     
  10. SteamWolf
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    SteamWolf Senior Member

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    I can empathise entirely!! I think you will actually make a great writer. You say you don't want to write, but you want to tell a story. I'm pretty much the same.
    The brain works MUCH faster than the fingers, so either work out a way of getting the ideas out at the same speed as you think (pencil and paper, talk into a microphone, etc) or accept that you will have to have a few goes at getting things down.

    Writing to me is much like being ill.

    You feel miserable for ages and don't want to start.
    When you do start it feels awesome and you can't get it out fast enough.
    You feel better when you're done, but you never want to look at it again.
     
  11. heather_ashcraft
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    heather_ashcraft Member

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    without a sense of taste your mind is free to touch the zen of pure flavor! - helmut spargle,futurama
     

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