Thursday, March 06, 2008

Trusting the Practice

You know how they say the more you know, the more you don't know? Sometimes, I can look at my writing and feel like I've come along way over the years, but ... really, I can just see just how much I need to improve. The more I write and the more I read, the more clearly I can see the flaws in my writing.

I tell my students that if you can hear it, you can fix it.

But sometimes, I can see my rhythm is off. I can change my rhythm to a certain extent, but sometimes the information I want to impart at that moment refuses to bow to the rhythm that I prefer.

I mean, I can make my rhythm not wrong, but sometimes I have trouble making my rhythm exactly what I want.

Anyway, i was thinking as I drove today, that the practice always leads somewhere. A day may not see much improvement, but add that to day after day for years, and it will add up to something.

As adults, we want lots of measurable and visible improvement every time we practice. I think, in writing, that a whole lot of the improvement happens under the surface, even unconsciously.

Or maybe that's just what I tell myself every day, LOL. We all have to have faith in something, I guess, as we sit down day after day and write.

What motivates you? What gives you faith, writing-wise?

9 bonus scribbles:

Edie 3/07/2008 12:47:00 AM  

Spy, I'm the queen of tweakers, so I don't think this is a good question for me. I know I'm better, but I can always improve. I'd hate to be static. I can tell when a writer is doing the same old thing.

I love writing, and I guess that's my motivation.

lainey bancroft 3/07/2008 10:19:00 AM  

That rhythm is a tricky thing, Spy. What works and is absolutely musical with one set of characters and situations can be completely discordant with another.

What motivates me is the determination to find a way to make each story hit its high note. Can't answer to the faith...sometimes I have it, other times, not so much.

Travis Erwin 3/07/2008 11:30:00 AM  

Faith? Who said anything about faith. I'm running on sheer stubborness, and my desire to prove the naysayers wrong.

Anonymous,  3/07/2008 01:09:00 PM  

Such an interesting question, since this has been fluttering in my head all week. My background is liberal theology. Writing is an extension of it. So though I'm on the very first baby steps of writing, it's fueled by the desire to have a voice, make a difference, affect change.

I had thought that was in a fiction genre, but the more I read you truly fabulous authors, the more I'm uncertain. Best of luck with your work, though!

StarvingWriteNow 3/07/2008 03:37:00 PM  

right now, dear, the only thing giving me faith is blogging--at least I"m writing something. And something is better than nothing.

spyscribbler 3/07/2008 11:36:00 PM  

Edie, I love to tweak! Maybe that's your answer ... the joy of tweaking, or improving, is what motivates you! Doesn't really matter what, in the end, though, does it?

Lainey, so true. I was thinking of the rhythm of the words, but I like your analogy better! I never thought of rhythm in that context. I like it.

LOL, Travis. Stubborness. That's a good one. I use that one often, too. Sometimes I can't get moving until I'm backed up against a wall.

Aerin, welcome! I think all that is in the fiction genre. I know fiction has sure influenced most every aspect of my beliefs and ideas.

Definitely, Writenow. I've had those periods, too. You just gotta thank God for every little word, sometimes.

Aimless Writer 3/08/2008 09:51:00 AM  

There's nothing better then finding the rhythm in a a story. Then it rolls like magic. You can't walk away and it consumes you night and day. Is this motivation? Or something else?
I have faith in the universe-it will deliver.

Bernita 3/08/2008 10:22:00 AM  

It's the discovery.

Julia Smith 3/08/2008 09:53:00 PM  

The thing that keeps me writing is the voices! The voices! No, seriously. Actually, it really seems that I can't rest until the story is done, as if the characters need me to tell their story. I can get annoyed sometimes when I reread my stuff and it seems clunky, but for the most part I'm more concentrated on the story playing inside my head - and the need to move it to the page.