Tuesday, July 10, 2012
The Writing Muscle
NaNo for the first time. For those of you who haven’t done it, it’s way cool with how you punch in your word count and see your progress visually on a graph.
I’m not sure how you all faired, but for me? It was a struggle to sit down and force myself to pump out the minimum 1600 words or so each day.
And the words were crap.
Total messy gibberish that might as well have been a mesh of words that someone randomly picked from a dictionary and vomited on a page.
But it isn’t like that anymore.
Something’s happened to me in the last eight months. I’m able to sit for longer periods of time, and keep my mind alert and in the zone. The quality of writing is better, along with the amount of words I’m able to put on the page.
And I think I owe it to one thing: Work. Conditioning. Failure to let myself slack.
I’ve kept a routine, and forced myself to put in chair time even when my brain wasn’t feeling it. Or when I’d rather have been sleeping.
And I can see the results. I sound like I’m on a weight loss show…
It’s true like anything, training and discipline do get you somewhere. I remember when I was dancing, there were certain steps that were easy. Cake. And it’d be fun to do those steps because they didn’t take much effort. Sure, it was good for me to practice them, and doing them kept my skill at a consistent level, but I wasn’t improving.
The times when I was improving was when the pain set in. When the burn of my muscles ached so bad I couldn’t take it anymore. It’s in those moments you’re stretching yourself, building muscle, gaining endurance.
It’s the same with writing. And crazy how our brain really is a muscle.
What are your writing “exercises?” Have you seen a huge improvement in the last year? Or even when you first started writing? Do you have a strict routine? Or do you fit it in whenever? (No wrong answers here, the point is that we write…)
Red. Head. Out. :D
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