Sunday, January 10, 2010

Writing About Not Writing. And Cheese.

Okay, so a few people have asked why I'm still blogging, editing, outlining, etc., when I'm on a self-imposed break from writing. And on the surface, I suppose that does seem a bit contradictory, but it's not. I haven't written a word since I grounded myself. Ah, but haven't I just written these words? Well, yes.

Thing is, there's editing, outlining, making notes, researching, plottering, scheminating, revising, querying, and blogging.

And there's...writing.

To use a cheesy analogy, let's say you're setting out to carve a relief map of New York City out of a brick of cheese. What? I told you this would be cheesy.

There's planning it out, researching the layout of New York City, finding the necessary tools, sharpening said tools (assume this is some really hard cheese), prepping the cheese (however one preps hard cheese for carving a relief map of New York City), and figuring out exactly how to carve a mugging-in-progress in Central Park without knocking over the Statue of Liberty.

And there's...carving.

Carving is the hard part, but it's certainly not the only part. The carving is the part where your hands get tired and you get cheese under your nails, and that's the part I need a break from for a little while.

To put it another way, have you ever noticed how many people talk about writing a novel someday, but never do it? They tinker with ideas, but never actually put pen to paper and nose to grindstone and write it? There's a reason for that: Tinkering is easy. Writing is the hard part. And no, I'm not one of those people who says writing is horrendously difficult, agonizing work. It's not, but let's be real: It is work. I love this work. Every last minute of it. There's a reason I choose to work upwards of 16 hours a day at's my passion, and I wouldn't trade it for the world.

It's still work, though, and it can get tiring after a while. My self-imposed grounding doesn't mean exorcising all things writing from my's just a few days to clear my head and get the cheese out from under my nails.

And now I suddenly have an inexplicable craving for a grilled cheese sandwich, so I'm going to wrap up this blog entry, go make myself a sandwich, and get back to outlining-not-writing.


  1. I now expect you to incorporate an analogy involving a sculpture of New York City carved out of cheese in your next novel. I hope you're happy.

  2. You bitch. You only posted that because I'm on a doctor-imposed cheese-grounding.