Day 1 of writing experiment

Hello. I am writing every day now.

Is what I intend to do, anyway. If I write it, it becomes real, correct? Envision your goal and you can achieve it. Books, people write lots and lots of those. Some get lost and some make it to the top of the Oprah book club list.

I’ve had the idea that I want to write a book for several years now. I’ve brainstormed on different topics, but the one I keep coming back to, the experience that could be extrapolated into an extended short story or novella, maybe a really meandering novel, is the experience I had road-tripping a few summers back. I guess it’s not necessarily original, but it’s true. That’s what people look for, right? Truth. Especially when we are young, the search for what is true and real and worth our time is cripplingly important. Truth has meaning, after all. But wait, something can be meaningful without it being true; the Legend of Zelda series carries a lot of meaning for me on a personal level, but sadly it is a fantasy.

Anyway, I think my first goal is to be less careful in my writing. I hated going back and editing my work for undergrad. It was akin to plucking eyebrows out with your fingers—I did that the other day and cried—so I avoided it by sitting for thirty minute chunks at a time mulling over one or two or three sentences in my head, making sure everything was just so before committing it to paper. In short, it was a very demanding and inefficient process. Sure, I guess I only had to make one go of the thing, start to finish, but it always felt like a little piece of me had died by the time I was clattering out the last sentence. I wanted to sound smart and clever and have SUCH GRAND AND ORIGINAL IDEAS that would blow away my professor, who then, being so overwhelmed with my genius, would invite me over for dinner where s/he would pontificate on the finer points of whatever topic and I would pander. The undergraduate dream.

I know, of course, I never wrote (or will, perhaps) anything that amazing or thoughtful. My biggest strength was my inability to focus, which I think professors saw as endearing. Here was this eager soul, chomping at the bit for knowledge, needing guidance to refine all the thoughts swirling through my brain. And my professors, bless them with their generosity of heart, would try their best to lead me; and I, like the proverbially horse, would still do all the dumb things I ever did in my writing: attempt drawing improbable connections between disparate topics, get bogged down in the form, use prolix writing patterns to dress up simple ideas. To make another animal comparison, I was peacock-in’. Yeah, peacocks have fantastic plumage, but they don’t make great writers (never mind the fact they don’t have opposable thumbs).

Nah, I wanna be a bandersnatch. Also, people do really cool drawings of bandersnatches:

by DaveAllsop on DeviantArt