Writing Woes–A Day in the Life of a Novelist

Click on image to view photo source.

Click on image to view photo source.

For those who haven’t been in the loop, I have been working on the latest revamp of my novel project, The Siren’s Curse (Previously Deshay of the Woods). The writing is going pretty well, thanks to the prodding of some supportive writing buddies, but some nights can be rough. If you’re an author, you must know how it is. You set aside writing time, which is great since typically you have to write when time becomes available making for a very inconsistent routine (I’ve a few tips to share when attempting to type while brushing one’s teeth and shaving).

Everyone in the house was asleep. Yes, it was late, but I’m a night owl anyway so I can work with that. I had a cool IPA just left of my laptop and a late-night snack to the right, my MS up on the screen and a will to punch keys and form lyrical prose and several ‘wow’ moments.

And here’s how it went:

There was a need to draw back for a moment, as if the grip of a riptide were pulling her away. The light emitted from her trinket brought heat to the metal, and she had a sudden urge to cast it away, fearing it might worsen. But it never did, for she was blinded by the light, revved up like a deuce another runner in the night…blinded by the liiiiiight…

88888888r4awraif (That’s my forehead smashing against the keyboard)

Dammit. Stupid Manfred Mann’s Earth Band and their stupid Blinded by the Light song with its stupid lyrics nobody can ever get right (for years my wife and I thought it was ‘wrapped up like a douche’ instead of ‘revved up like a deuce.’).

Then I decide I need to take a break, clear my mental palette, drink another beer (yes, after staring at the screen for who knows how long after the song lyric debacle, I’ve gone through a beer) and recollect my thoughts. After a half hour of sifting through sports scores, I sigh and go back to the jerk-of-a white page as it reconvenes in its efforts to taunt me like a maniacal drill sergeant.

After another fifteen minutes and a line and a half of purple prose get dumped on the page, I decide I need another break. My head’s beginning to throb as I try to find my muse who, in this time, has done nothing for me but continually feed me the same Manfred Mann’s Earth Band lyric over and over again.

I get up to get another beer. When I come back, the cat is lying on the keyboard and has somehow erased several key paragraphs and saved it that way. After narrowing down a long list of new nicknames I wish to call my pet from here on out, I shoo him away and get back to writing—blowing away the wisps of hairs still clinging to the keyboard.

Then I continue:

…and she had a sudden urge to cast it away, fearing it might worsen. But it never did. Rather, it settled into something soothing, nuzzling against her bosom until she could scarcely discern their separation from one another.

Hey, this isn’t all that bad, I think. The words are starting to flow, I think. MY MUSE HAS RETURNED TO ME, I think.

"Turtle," the cat

“Turtle,” the cat

And then Turtle (my cat’s name is Turtle) jumps on my shoulders…only he doesn’t quite get to my shoulders and his hind claws dig into the skin of my back.

The bad thing about all this is that I didn’t get much writing in. The good thing is that now I know how resilient my cat is after getting thrown across the room.

Just a day in the life of a writer, I suppose.

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About authorphilpartington

Phil is a writing enthusiast of many years, having been published in numerous online and national print trade and sports publications over the past decade. He has spent the past five years delving back into the world of fiction writing, focussing on the fantasy, horror and suspense genres. Deshay of the Woods is his first novel.
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5 Responses to Writing Woes–A Day in the Life of a Novelist

  1. Feeling your pain. I can’t put two words together until the DH and the kid are unconscious. Then the dog starts yapping outside my window, the new clock my DH has hung above his desk ( which is opposite my desk) is tick, tick, ticking so loudly I rip it from the wall and stuff it under a couch cushion in the other room. Then there is the writer cat. Yes, there’s always the writer cat sitting directly over the exhaust vent of my laptop or even better on top of my mouse or my note page of things I have to fix in my ms. Come to think of it, it’s a miracle any book ever gets written. Ever. Keep on keep in’ on my brother.

  2. Pingback: Writing My Fear Out | Fiction Writing For Teens & Adults

  3. Pingback: Cats and beer. | Chrisroxxs

  4. Pingback: I (DJ Don Edwards) am playing Revolution Roulette by Poets Of The Fall after just playing songs by The White Stripes, Imperial Teen, Gina Thompson and Manfred Mann’s Earth Band on radio Mondays! | Sunset Daily

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