Writing, writing, writing

Writing from a fresh perspective

Writing from a fresh perspective

I haven’t been posting here as often, because I’ve been rather stuck with writing. Which is a good thing, because I’m usually stuck “not writing” instead! And I’ve been more regular at my writing blog.

Exercising the writing muscle is not over-rated. If you keep at it everyday when it is hard to get even a sentence out, there will be days when you’re blessed and cannot stop writing.

This happened to me on the 25th Feb, when I wrote 2000 words on a short story, took me the whole day to do it, but I think I’ve got a decent draft to work on. 26th and 27th Feb were relatively dry days, I spent a lot of time reading, researching, and plotting, not that much time writing.

Let’s hope things are better next week, because I’ll be traveling, and will always have a notepad by my side.

Hopefully, it will give me a new perspective, trigger a fresh way of looking at old things when I come back, or a fruitful response to the new things I’m going to see.

Writing about Italian exams, word count

Firstly, can’t help bragging: I cleared my CELI 3 exams in Italian!

Secondly, and (not so cheerfully), here’s my word count for the last week:

19th Feb: o (Revised a story though)

20th Feb: 317

21st Feb: o (did not step near computer or notebook)

22nd Feb: 418

23rd Feb: 1211

24th Feb : 891

Writing about reading, drowning.

As I wrote on my writing blog, I’m currently drowning in books.

But unlike any other man or woman drowning in real life, going under water, swallowing it in their lungs, I am not scrambling for the surface. I am dipping my head into books and staying under. This is so much better than breathing.

Writing about Books and Librarything

I have talked about reading before, and I love the way Susan Sontag defines its place in a writer’s life:

“A writer is first of all a reader. It is from reading that I derive the standards by which I measure my own work and according to which I fall lamentably short. It is from reading, even before writing, that I became part of a community—the community of literature—which includes more dead than living writers.”

Over the years I’ve read books, scores of them. A few of them I remember in their entirety, I remember the essence of others, and still others I’ve forgotten, and the only thing I remember is scattered images. They’ve gone down into me somewhere, all these books, become subsumed, distilled. Maybe they flow in my veins, who knows.

I’m not sure I can go back to reading everything I’ve read before, or even the ones I really liked. There are too many good books I haven’t read at all and am dying to read. So many books, so little time. Even when I finish 2 books a week, I’m only able to read 8 a month, and about 100 a year. Not really enough. Well, I sometimes finish a book in a day, or two , but then there are spells when I can only get in a few lines seated on my throne in the morning, or a chapter at bedtime.

So books once read stay that way. But now I’ve discovered Librarything, and once I’m done posting into my virtual library, I’ll put up its widget on my writing blog, so I can get reminders on what books lie on my reading shelf. I can look at books I’ve read, but are no longer with me, and maybe decide to buy them again to put on my tottering, real-world bookshelves.

What about you? How do you relate to books–the ones you have read and ones yet to read?

Writing about hiatus

I know this blog has been on holiday. Other than the million small challenges on the personal front, I have been doing writing workshops, attending writing advice surgeries and that’s kept me busy.

But it has all been incredibly helpful, and I feel as if I’ve progressed 3 months in 3 days! I’m trying to blog about my workshop experiences here to try and share as much as I can of what I learned, but I realize you have to be at a workshop to really benefit from it.

It is not a teacher that teaches and you take notes, it is a facilitator that initiates a writing session, and then moderates exchange of views and comments, so it is hard to capture the whole thing in a blog post.

Two more sessions this week, and then this wonderful learning period would be over, and I would be back to struggling on my own.

Word Count:

11Feb- 500,

12 Feb- 315,

13 Feb-700,

14 Feb- 1134 (writing at workshop),

15 Feb- 600,

16 Feb-412.

Writing about wrong notes

Gustave Flaubert once said something that summarizes my state of mind today:

I am irritated by my own writing. I am like a violinist whose ear is true, but whose fingers refuse to reproduce precisely the sound he hears within.