I’ve been trying to work my way back into fiction writing after having been on a long hiatus. The long hiatus has been filled with editing and layout and figuring out the publishing aspects of my Greenville novel. Now that I’m most of the way through that, time to turn back to writing. Not that I haven’t produced any writing at all since last May. I’ve done plenty of blog posting and writing for work. Nonfiction writing is second nature to me, so interruptions don’t throw off my production. Fiction is another beast altogether.
In order to get back into the flow, I find it helps to read books on writing advice. My current book of choice is “The Writer’s Idea Workshop” by Jack Heffron. I’m four chapters in and am finding that it is just the book I need for this period of time. In Chapter Three, Heffron suggests creating an ideas file or keeping ideas in a notebook. I already do this, so this isn’t earth-shaking news to me. He also suggests revisiting those ideas, which is what I chose to do today.
I started by cleaning my desk, which was full of cat hair, dust, and bits of food. Yuck! Who can work in that? Then I dug out my stack of notebooks with writing ideas. Here’s the stack:
My current ideas notebook is the one with polka dots. I sifted through these, looking for past ideas that I haven’t developed but that I’m still interested in working through. I found about a dozen intriguing ideas, several of which I’ve got started and have been mulling for months. No wonder I’m having difficulty getting started again. Too many ideas! From here, I need to reread the stories I’ve begun and choose whatever grabs me the most. It’s as simple (and as hard) as that. I think I’d better call on my muse to assist me.
As I was cleaning and sifting, I took a look through all of my accumulated writing and took pictures to share with you.
This is my bin of past collected writing, including high school and college stuff, plus years worth of daily journals. This does not include the ideas notebooks shown above. I keep those in a file cabinet.
Below is my file box of past versions of Greenville stories. The box is about one-third full. I also have at least one notebook and several file folders devoted to the book.
And here is my collection of books on writing, plus a middle shelf containing binders of finished work, including essays, Greenville, and printed blog posts:
My brain is now feeling overwhelmed and over-worked, so it’s time to stop thinking for today.