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THE PURE FUN AND JOY OF CREATING

February 2, 2021

            I guess I should break this down a bit, right up front. There are writers that are plotters and there are writers that are pantsers. I’m in the pantser category.

            What this means is that I don’t spend days, weeks, or even months plotting out my story before I ever type a line. The sole planning of my story is that in my head, I figure out A and then B and then the title right up front. After that, my plotting is dun didded.

            That’s it.

            Case closed.

            Upward and beyond (to quote someone ((Galaxy Quest??)).

            Following an outline, would turn the writing into a task rather than a pleasure. Consequently, it would suck all the life right out of the whole process, though I’d still somewhat enjoy it because it IS writing. Instead, I follow a seat-of-the-pants approach.

            In other words, I write freeform, with the goal being B, or, the end of the story.

            As soon as I start from A, the adventure begins. It’s a pure pleasure.

A PURE PLEASURE

            It’s no secret I love to write. Here I am, Sunday morning, everyone else is asleep and what am I doing? I’m writing this. I could be sleeping, or reading a great book (the current one is by Preston & Child, two great authors). Instead, I’m plonking down another Tuesday article.

            Why?

            Because I love it.

            I this case, it’s not one of my novels, or a short, plotted story.

            It’s a weekly blog article.

            It’s still writing.

            When it IS one of my plotted stories, when I sit down to write, I go off into my own world, my own adventure.

            It’s hard to describe what it’s like.

            It’s a pure pleasure.

            For some that profess to love writing, it’s a torture, an effort, a source of agony.

            Why?

WHEN WRITING IS OTHER THAN A PLEASURE

            Writing can be other than a pleasure for a multitude of reasons.

            A very common one is that a person gets an inspiration to be a writer. They have great ideas for stories. The issue is that when they sit down to put it to practice, the mechanics of the actual writing don’t pan out the way they think it will.

            Uh oh…

            Another one is that a writer has certain chops but they’re trying to emulate their tortured artist hero. This person is of the impression that every word, every phrase is pure torture and that’s what makes their output a great work, when and if they ever get done with it.

            Another one is of course, most people. They want to be a writer, but they haven’t yet developed the skills to be able to sit down and just write. This is the most common. They know they don’t have the skills yet, are willing to learn, but get too hung up in the mechanics of it to enjoy the process. This is similar to the first one above.

            Another common one is someone who’s good at writing, but doesn’t get immediate results for their effort. They expect a big bang for their buck, and have allotted a certain amount of time to be a success. When it doesn’t pan out, the virtual tears come. They like writing, but their main motivation is money, rather than pleasure. They’re out to make a living at something they love doing. There’s nothing wrong with doing both. It would be great to be able to do both, but this is a very difficult bid’ness to break into and very frustrating to most, like any other profession. It can stifle pleasure and creativity in a short time.

            Those are a few examples of typical writers, but not all-inclusive.

WHY I WRITE

            I have described my writing processes numerous times here at Fred Central, but I can only stress that when I write, when I create my stories, my “big lies,” to be facetious, I go to a different place. I’ve done that since I was at show and tell in kindergarten and told the class my sister went down the drain at bath time, or showed the ladies in the cul-de-sac my “polka-dot-sewer” drawing. I’ve never been at a loss for strange new worlds, and now I have an outlet.

            What makes it easier is that once I seriously took up writing, I discovered I actually had the chops for it. When I sat down at the keyboard and hammered out The Cave, way back in 1995, I discovered for myself that I could pull it off. I finished that novel, as crude as it was, in about three months. This was in the evenings after work.

            At this moment, I am now editing it. I have been quite surprised and shocked at how this very first attempt is not nearly as bad as I first thought it was. I’d never had any intention of publishing it until I found the original manuscript and scanned through it. Then I decided to go through it, sentence by sentence and clean it up. It’s slow going because my chops have improved immensely, but story-wise, it’s not that bad, and I think I have something that might just work.

            When I wrote it, I went off into another world. I did not stop to think, I just did. Right there and then, I figured A, the start, and B the ending. I even had the title which I figured while I was contemplating B. After that, it was a matter of going off into my little world and typing away at my very crude computer.

            Somehow it worked, despite the quirks of the software, and whatever other obstacles I had to deal with at the time. I went off into my dream world and because I could type almost as fast as I could think, which admittedly can be rather slow at times…kept me at a rhythm and pace that worked.

            It’s almost impossible to translate that feeling to a non-writer, or even to some of you that don’t possess the skill to write that fast, or that on-the-fly. I take my ideas and just spill them out. That’s it.

            Pure joy and pleasure of creating.

            There’s no high greater than that for me.

            THAT’S why I’m a writer.

            How about you?

            Happy writing!

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