Writing As Play

The very first error I made with my novel was thinking it was a linear process. Write one scene and the next until finished. This may be true for the first draft, but not the rest of them.

Part of the fun of writing a novel is seeing what lay down the road of each possibility. What if the character didn’t follow when they should have? What if they were killed? How can this portion be even more gut wrenching? – and then writing that scene to see where it goes.

Many of these pieces will never be read by anyone but the author and may be considered by some to be wasted time and energy. Not I. This is part of the joy and play of writing.

As writers we must turn over every stone, make the road long and necessarily weary, before we can stand confidently on our finished book. Through the struggle I admit I lose some of the fun and playfulness. There should be joy and it is work. For me, they are intermingled and confused all too often.

Every now and again my kids remind me of this. They have so much joy in what they do where I take things too seriously. It is a refreshing reminder to pull my head out of the ground and see the sun. I love my children for this and so much more.